Friday, May 31, 2019

Riding at Home

Well, it's a bit more exciting in my mind, but.. it works. I had wanted to put up some grids and jumps at home so that on occasion I could toss in a few rides at home and practice with grids. It's hard to do them at Ashland and I can easily set stuff up at home and do them. So.. I pulled out my standards and a lot of them were broken. So I mentioned it to Peri (not even thinking about all the jumps she had!) and she offered me as many of hers as I wanted!!! Yahoo!!! So I took 5 sets from her, 8 poles, and.. forgot jump cups. But I've got 3 pairs, so... I at least had something to start with. Oh, and I got a barrel from her. So...yay! I was really super excited about doing grids. :) 

So this morning, my truck was in the shop and I had a cancellation for my morning, so.. I had time. I fed ponies and then went and set jumps up. And... I'm trying to do my homework and be good, but... what I walk does not seem to correlate with what the measurements are supposed to be. So... I need to clarify that because... I swear I know how to walk strides. I think I don't understand the actual distances in feet for the striding. But I'll figure it out. I need to pull out my grid book and just use their grids. But since I didn't plan ahead and only had 3 jumps worth of cups, I just winged it this morning. I put in a three stride with poles on the ground, so I could practice getting the right canter. Yet... I think I did it wrong. I think I measured for a 3 stride off jumps.. not a 3 stride of canter poles?? So I don't know, we ended up making it a 4 stride to get what felt like a collected proper canter. Then I also set up a 2 stride to a one stride and then added the barrel on a bend before or after. 

So... when the boys were done eating, I took them both down to the front field because I didn't want to deal with them screaming at each other. Poor Fleck had to stand tied to the fence. But after we rode, he got to come on a short little walk about with us. :) Which made him happy I think. 

Dan and I warmed up a bit, but... that footing is tough. It's got so many little tufts here and there and ant hills. And it's good for Dan to learn how to balance and watch his feet, but it's a little nerve wracking. So we managed to get our warm up in and then I did some cantering and tried to get THE canter. I didn't quite get it, but my poles line was also riding funny. So I ended up making it a 4 stride, and that felt better. So then we carried that canter into the grid. And it was great! It felt a bit tight, but he was able to rock back and bounce on through. So then we tried again and we definitely did NOT have the right canter. He pooped over the first one, totally landed far right outside of the grid. Sigh... So we did it again and we got it pretty much right every time after. Although it was definitely tight. So I definitely need to find out the right measurements. 

So then we did the barrel. Ha! Dan did NOT get the concept of jumping it at first. I tried trotting it two or three times and finally cantered to it. Then he understood better. And once he realized it, he was looking for it and jumping. So then we incorporated it into the grid line. It rode well and was fun. 

So then... we decided to quit with that but I wanted to do some simple changes. We did walk to R lead canter to walk to L lead canter to walk to R lead canter. Yay!!!! Then we did it walk to L lead canter to walk to R lead canter to walk to R lead again. Ooops. We did that sequence again and go the L, R, L correctly. Then we did one fancy trot and quit. Well, we did pony Fleck around the farm for a few minutes to cool down. I wanted to see how the back looked now that Mike mowed it. It looks great! But the bugs thought so too! It was awful. There was like... 9 deer flies on their faces in seconds. Ugh.

So yep. It was a nice quick ride. Probably an hour total to tack up, ride, untack and hose off. :) So I'll definitely be doing more of that. Now hopefully we can get some rain so the ground isn't rock hard! 

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