Thursday, 25 April 2013

Boot Camp

So this week started as last week ended with me on the sick list! I somehow managed to tweak my neck whilst lying in bed which led to me being in agony and questioning whether it was possible to break your neck just lying in bed - I'm not at all melodramatic ;0)

However I was only badly injured in the morning, come the afternoon I was dosed up to the eyeballs on a fantastic combination of painkillers and so managed to get on my pony to enjoy the sunshine. He was, as always, a saint... I'm not entirely sure what would have happened had he not been.. I would have probably slithered off and collapsed in a drugged up heap!
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Ignore me (shoulders, head & elbows)
Sunday arrived and we decided to go and play in the river that had burst its banks and, we had been told, was up to the horses bellies. I was uber excited but it wasn't as dramatic as foretold so our pony friend didn't have to swim but Buddy made the most of it by splashing our companions - he loves a bit of water.

As we are approaching our dressage re-debut I also squeezed a lesson in this week. I wanted to run through my test, practise in my kit and just ensure that I could get gain marks wherever possible. It didn't start off too well as Buddy was a bit lame on his bad leg however, I had found a bit of mud fever prior to my lesson and had picked at it a bit so I'm hoping it was just that which made him sore but he does usually get better after a bit of work so we decided to give it five minutes and see how he went.
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Heel first!
He got much better so we continued! We focused on getting Buddy in front of the leg, straight and equal in both reins. He prefers to work in a more baby outline and so asking him to come 'up' more is pretty hard work but we got him working in a lower and then more advanced outline and he got the hang of it pretty quickly. We use lateral work to keep him straight and tonight we used leg yielding in trot and then asking for a more medium trot on the opposite side to stop him getting stuffy. We also had a bit of a canter which I've been working hard on out hacking and I was very pleased to see that it translated into the school and he is much better although we still have a little way to go but I'm hopeful we could enter a prelim dressage test in a few weeks if we work hard.

We then ran through our test and it was ok, there are some half circles which I rode really badly the first couple of times so we worked on those and turning a bit earlier for our centre line. After 19 months we are ready to get back out the again!
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Gorgeous boy though want more heel first landing here
I had hoped that I would be able to sneak to our first competition relatively easily but found out that YO, her husband and some followers are also entering the same class. I am super competitive and can't help putting pressure on myself to do well and I know, whatever happens, I will be really disappointed if we don't perform well - especially if we are beaten (which is incredibly likely - so much so that I'm wondering why I would be disappointed as its pretty much a given). I really wanted to have a no pressure, low key debut but that's not going to happen now and I'm pretty sad about it. But hey ho.. Onwards and upwards. I'm still really excited about it :0D

If you're interested there's some raw footage of our lesson here:


  1. Go Buddy! He's looking well. Shame it won't be as low key as you wanted but I'm sure he won't disappoint you.
    May I ask, when he was slightly lame on his bad foot was he footie or short striding.?

  2. Thank you - he is rather special but I am biased!

    He was a bit short on it, barely noticeable but still there... He's been out on the grass more this week too so I'm wondering if that could be it too. There are so many variables to the barefoot journey so its hard to know what's right. Trial and error all the way ;0)