March 1, 2011

Back to the Basics

My Trainer has been recently blessed with a new baby girl (of the human kind) so I have been on a lesson hiatus for the last several weeks.  No worries, I understand, so I have been video taping myself to keep the momentum going.  At our last lesson she had given me a few things to work on so we have enough homework to keep busy.  I just need the visual to match what I think I'm doing with what I'm actually doing. 

Watching the video I can see we still aren't getting a good bend to the right and his head is ahead of the vertical.  But overall we are looking good.  After the long battle with Dexter diving behind the vertical I'll take a little nose out any day.

A little proud of myself for how far we've come I sent some of the video to my old trainer back in FL.  She has since retired from the horse business but we enjoy talking horsey stuff every now and then. 

She agreed he is looking much better and that it is easier to bring a horse back to the vertical vs pushing him out.  The she dropped a little bomb.  She asked why I was consistently on the wrong diagonal.  She gave me the benefit of the doubt thinking I was doing it on purpose.

She was half right, I was purposefully picking up the inside diagonal but didn't know it was the wrong  one.  OOPS!!  I guess after a very long hiatus from lessons my brain got mixed up on which diagonal to be on.   My current trainer hadn't really emphasized my diagonal, we've been too busy working on my frame and Dexter's.  And the funny thing is I know if you start posting on the first stride out of a canter you should be on the correct diagonal and I noticed I never was.  I thought it was weird but figured I had gotten that part wrong.

The embarrassing part was I looked back at the video from my show and yup, on the wrong diagonal.  How embarrassing.  I wonder why the judge didn't mention it.  Maybe we were such a mess she figured the last thing I needed to worry about was a silly diagonal.

So, I thanked my old trainer and told her I'd fix it right away, no big deal, look at my outside shoulder instead of my inside.  She insisted I re-learn how to feel my diagonal without looking, ok, no problem.  I guess I never really paid attention to my diagonal because I saw posting as something I had to do until me and Dexter were strong enough to sit the trot.  Then we'd only post when lengthening or when he got too forward.  But as we have been at it a year, maybe I should pay more attention.

We spent some time during our last riding sessions feeling the diagonal.  The good thing is it seems to be easy, or at least like riding a bike.  I can definitely tell what shoulder is moving when.  The funny thing is if I glance I can pick up the correct diagonal, but when I'm feeling it I almost always pick up the "right" (as in right or left) diagonal.  Even if in my head I am saying up, down, up, down correctly I'll come up on the down. 

Hmmm, guess I'm sided, just like my horse.  No biggie we can handle this one.  But it is funny the things you forget when someone isn't there reminding you weekly.  I always felt like riding a horse is like riding a bike, but I guess the technical rules get a little fuzzy.

1 comment:

  1. Haha, funny how those things just seem to... slip past you. I remember learning to feel for my diagonals... I don't know if I can still do it, checking is just second nature. Sort of like how I always look for my lead. When I first started riding I couldn't see leads, only feel them. Because of that, I spent a long time looking for my leads and I've never totally lost the habit. (Much to my coaches chagrin, I think)