Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Asking Clearly to Get What You Want

 Wednesday, when I went to ride Lucky and help Laura, I lunged Lucky by myself while Laura rode Dyna. Now that I had an idea of what I was supposed to do and what I was asking for, the lungeing went much better. I looked for the moments when Lucky was balanced, stretching her neck down. At these moments I asked for a transition, because it is important for horses to remain balanced throughout transitions, and to do this they must already be balanced! I did lots of transitions and changed directions multiple times to work both sides. Laura watched me for a few minutes to see what I had been doing, and said that I had done a good job!

 This also applies to riding. You have to know what it is you want, and how to ask for it, because if you don't know what you want your horse doesn't either. I was able to get Lucky forward and on the bit. I needed to get her to the pace I wanted by asking softly at first, and then stronger, and then soft again rather than kicking every stride. I worked mostly on a 20 meter circle, using my body to turn and my inside leg to keep her bending.
Picture of me riding Lucky!

 Something I have been struggling with is keeping my elbows bent. I keep making my arms straight, which jars the horses mouth and does anything but give an elastic connection. At these moments, of course, Lucky didn't come round and forward. However, when I really focused on keeping my elbows aligned, my legs stretching down and my body stretching nice and tall, everything came to place. Laura likes to use the figurative description on your legs stretching way into the earth like trees, and your upper body stretching way up to the sky. This description really helps.

 Now, the quick break down. What to work on:

  • Elbows bent!
  • Don't let the reins slip–fingers shut.

What went well:

  • I was asking more clearly
  • I didn't rely on my hands
  • I had good geometry on my circle
Also, in other news spring is on it's way! Large clumps of hair came out when I curried Lucky. It won't be long until she has a nice, sleek summer coat.


  1. I have issues with my elbows too. I always like to think of my elbows as weighted towards the ground, like I'm carrying grocery bags in the nook of each elbow. That always really helps me.

  2. i need to work on bending my elbows and closing my fingers too - it's a hard habit to break!

  3. I'm really bad about not keeping my fingers closed enough too. It sounds like you're really learning a lot and doing well!


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