Calm, Forward, Straight

Calm, Forward, Straight

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

In the Arena #30 - Being here now...

Over the weekend, I groomed up Val within an inch of his life and attempted to take conformation photos.

I suspected it would not be a one person job, and that is a fact. So my father was enlisted as assistant. The mosquitoes continue to be epic... it was challenging for Val to stay still - especially since I didn't apply any bug spray not wanting to diminish his sparkly-ness. Every photo has an in motion tail and most show Val slowly walking towards his handler (Dad), searching for treats. And his reverse side pictures mostly had his feet cut off.

What I didn't expect from the experience was the effect of the horse handling 101 lecture I gave my Dad. When you have to break something down for someone else, you get a different, (really beneficial) perspective on it. I believe Einstein once said something like - "if you can't explain a concept to a 10 year old, you don't really understand it yourself." Not comparing my father to a 10 year old, but he has zero horse handling experience, so the analogy kind of works. Also, my whole demeanor changed, more authoritative. Very positive experience.


I believe some of that leadership spilled over to our ride today, which was the best ride we've had to date outside of lessons at my trainers farm. Our turning issues have all but disappeared, we had some super turns on the forehand and we were making decent circles - both directions - by the end of the session.

Val has recently decided that the back right corner of the paddock is scary (spooky neighbors with guns related) and the area where the sand has gotten dry and fairly deep is hard to work in. He began the ride trying to avoid both areas. I kept my legs on and gently created walls wherever he tried to evade. Breathing, patience and tons of praise. Basically, I was able to stay in the moment today. My seat felt so good. And both of our attitudes were excellent. I may be on the way to conquering my confidence issues...

A great ride to build on. Can't wait until we do it again :)


  1. He's got kind of a lovely blue undertone to his coat.
    I have tried many times to take a good confirmation shot of my horse. You definately need someone there who is either a good horse photographer(stands in the right place and gets the whole horse) or you need a good handler to help you, so you can take pics.
    Sounds easy but it's not..;-)

  2. Nice picture, and it sounds like your ridden work is going very well!

  3. Val looks gorgeous, he's such a handsome guy. Taking horse pictures is really hard either by yourself or with help. They never seem to cooperate. I always miss the 'good' shot which occurs right after the 'bad' shot'.

    Your ride sounds like it's getting you where you want to be, that's a good feeling and confidence builder. Hope those nasty mosquitoes die off soon.

  4. Val is quite a handsome horse... sounds like you have a lovely relationship with him. Good for you - and Val!

    Petra Christensen
    Parelli 2Star Junior Instructor
    Parelli Central

  5. Jill-

    Not much about horses that is easy lol ;)

  6. Kate and Arlene-

    Thanks once again for the kind comments and support. I get so much inspiration from both of you (and Billie). :) :) :)

  7. Thanks Petra - I think we're turning into a pretty good team :)

  8. Catching up here after some time away - so glad you are enjoying these super rides and successes! It's wonderful to read and I'm inspired too!


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