Summer Solstice weekend plans

DressageCob

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Third flat lesson of the year on Saturday. Considering our location the forecast doesn't look _too_ terrible so hoping for a bit of rain so I can do some jumping on grass at home to get used to studs and hopefully get him feeling a bit braver again
Your new photo is awesome! Where is that?
 

WelshHoarder

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Hiding away in denial about it being the longest day! But in reality, taking baby Welshie and small child out to unaffilisted dressage on Saturday, then hoping the weather is kind so they can crack on with learning the other tests they’ve got coming up. That’s assuming they’re both ok in the morning after an awkward trip/stumble tonight - they both seemed alright this evening so hopefully all will be fine…
Then possibly a lesson on Sunday, but depends if instructor has caught up with some of her uni work, last weekend she was a bit swamped so we postponed. Might start doing something more structured with my mare as well, she needs to come back into work!
 

Breagha

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Nothing much planned this weekend. Probably schooling and hopefully get out for a hack if I can find someone to look after Layla. Husband is going to a Puddledub show next weekend at the fountain for their first ridden and workers in 3 years.
 

AandK

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We're back in the game! Foot all good now, so just building it up to get back to where we were before the bruising... Had a rather lovely little session in the school on Weds, hacked yesterday AM instead of this morning due to the weather - they weren't wrong! Tomorrow looking much better so another short school and then have family coming over in the avo for a BBQ.
 

milliepops

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Got my skates on this morning to get lorry into the field before it started raining. Sticky 3yo went straight up the ramp and plunged his face into the bucket of pony nuts :D so pleased with him this week, he's gone from being completely unable to think about what he was being asked and falling over his feet, and then really worried when he finally did get on the box, to confidently striding up the ramp and being relaxed on board.
I'll need help to do the partition shutting really but that can wait.

Nice confidence boost for me that I can teach him stuff too ;) I was a bit worried that he was so hard of thinking. i think he just didn't know how to learn. Well he's had a crash course now ;) he's got better to lead and also more manoeuverable for doing this work, plus had a little introduction to moving away from a whip which will be handy for lunging etc. And Hera learned she could be in the stable on her own. All small things but feels good to make progress now. Gold stars all round :)

 

southerncomfort

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Sat on my youngster today while OH led us around the school.

All good! 👍He was more interested in the polo's husband had hidden in his pockets than the bonkers human on his back.

He is so nice to sit on, wide but not nearly as wide as the barrel bellied welsh cob X.
 

Laafet

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We have a lesson tomorrow at home and maybe trying to video some online dressage on Sunday. I say try as we can't get out to hire my trainers arena (I really can't justify spending £100 plus on hire to go 20 minutes up the road) so we are going to have to tackle the hedge of doom if we video at home. It's been exasperating - the F-A corner is the bane of nearly every liveries life st our yard and I suspect if the farmer cut the hedge down that we would all be fine but that's a flat no. It is telling that in winter they are all better in that area!
Stormy was going really well - scoring 72% last month but we have gone hugely backward this month. I am hoping it's just the way of a 5 year old and we will get back there. Based on this morning's performance I am a bit deflated. So it's good timing to have a lesson tomorrow. My trainer is excellent at coming up with answers when I get stumped and start catastrophising.
We have got our first show next weekend and I am so glad we are just going in hand!
 

Goldenstar

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Blue the Cob is off to do two Prelims on Sunday . He is coming on some of you might remember that this campaign started off to get him cantering when he arrived canter was achieved by running in trot with his head up and swung to the outside once canter was achieved it was long strung out and four time despite this he always jumped very neatly .
It took a long time to teach him the transition which was done from walk and while it’s coming in the trot it’s still work in progress.
The canter it’s self is coming on but he’s ten and that’s quite a lot of wrong muscle memory to turnaround . It’s definitely only one canter no gear changes yet though and he can’t do it for long or manoeuvre much if we get through the test error free that will be a result .
Sky is just back in the field after two marvellous lessons over two days with Clive Halsall.
Very very hard work horse and the rider ( the pro ) Sky just keeps offering more and came out today and did it again very very proud of him .
Sky will walk tomorrow out hacking and rest Sunday .Monday is him being ridden by the pro and Tuesday they go to Paul Langford for their usual fortnightly session .
Thursday is his induction session at the water treadmill I’ll let you all know how that goes .
 

Ambers Echo

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So proud of Dolly and Katie today in the NSEA National Championship JwS qualifier. She jumped 2 lovely double clears in the 80/85 and 90/95 classes to place individual 7th in the 80/85 and individual 3rd in the 90/95. Top 2 qualified! Arghh. She missed out by 1/4 of a fault! But they jumped 2 beautiful rounds so can't ask for more than that.

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maya2008

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I can’t take my pony out ‘cos she is being ‘Auntie’ to our new foal so too much infection risk just yet 😟.

Husband and kids took two to local arena hire though (quiet yard where son shares a sweet 12.2hh). Daughter got back on the Shetland for the first time in ages and actually enjoyed herself. Son has definitely started to grown out of the Shetland though. His balance is so much better on the bigger share pony.

Long hack tomorrow to try to keep everyone vaguely slim…
 

blood_magik

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I had two fab lessons with new trainer this morning. First time he’s seen Blue so was interested to hear his thoughts.

as soon as I got Blue soft and let him take the contact forwards he took advantage and rushed so I need to make sure I keep counting and be quicker to stop him running. We did get there eventually and he felt so awesome that I didn’t want to stop 🤩

So still lots to work on there…

Then Raz was so chilled I had to double check I had the right horse 😂
Lots of moving the shoulders and quarters in/out bother on a circle and on the long side to stop him getting stuck through his ribcage and then we had a look at the changes to finish. He was sooo much softer than the last time we attempted them (around 18 months ago) and we got several clean, smooth changes each way 🙌 so to say I’m happy is an understatement 😄

First change:
 

Roxylola

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Hooray for so many positive updates and happy weekend planners.
Our dressage lesson was mega. Had a false start as the trailer had a flat tyre, but we borrowed another livery's trailer 🥰 and arrived late but threw tack on and cracked on.
Full of beans to start and a little shirty about my leg at first, then about the stick but he settled and let me use them in the end 😂
Worked on our shoulder in and leg yield, walk - canter, simple changes (and just about can get a true canter to walk transition now). And a little counter canter to finish. So pleased with him, he's really coming together now.
Homework is to try a double bridle a bit so he's used to it for our next lesson
 

Bernster

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Better day today with the new boy. Had a quiet hack out with 2 friends and then did some big circuits in the school, working on rhythm and speed and he def improved. No canter work for a little while as the right canter feels like the wall of death, but pleased to have a better session under our belts.
 

nikicb

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Eight months to the day after Maddie became mine, we finally went to our first competition together. I honestly couldn't be more pleased with how it went despite the very early start - I really do not like alarms set for 5 something these days! She was really good in the warm up, and we achieved everything on my list fairly calmly - walk, trot, canter on each rein, some lateral work, a little gear work, and some transitions. It was good to see that although she had a good nose at each horse coming in and out of the warm up, she really wasn't bothered about them working around her.
We wandered down to the indoor at our allotted time, but unfortunately the judge wasn't quite ready, and we had to wait a little while outside. Once we were allowed in, I think we had both become a little tense and Maddie took exception to the haylage bales that she could just see over the wall. If you bear in mind that she does go in this indoor regularly, it was clear that there were some competition nerves going on - I am quite happy to admit that I was part of this as well. Anyway, we rode the test and got a fairly clear round in terms of doing everything at the right place/time etc., but I knew tension would affect our marks.
We returned to the warm up as there was only about 15 minutes till the next test, and just walked for a little while, before picking up the pace just before our next test. By this stage there were about 7 horses in the arena, and Maddie still remained pretty nonchalant about them which was great and helped my confidence. We went up to the outdoor arena and rode our second test. This was loads better and we definitely had much more connection right from the beginning. We had a bit of a mistake with a muddled canter-trot transition where she changed a stride before trot, then got everything back together. Unfortunately towards the end of the test she got distracted by the next horse waiting to come in, went to drop the canter, but I pushed her on to maintain it, so the last few movements were a bit rushed, but we did everything where we needed to, and I was pleased that I felt comfortable enough to tell her to get on with it.
Back to the lorry once we had cooled off, and she was really chilled despite the lorry park being absolutely heaving by that point. Once I had untacked and loaded Maddie, I checked our scores and we had achieved 65.769% for our first test (2nd in our section and 3rd overall) and 66.034% for our second (1st in our section and 2nd overall). I think that's a fair reflection - the first test was full of 6s and 7s which is under what we could score due to the tension. The second test was all 7s and 7.5s for the first three-quarters of it, other than the change blip of 4.5, then dropped once the other horse distracted her - we did finish up with a 7.5 though, so it is worth riding every movement!
To top it all, that means we have qualified for Area Festivals in our first outing! Once I had taken Maddie home and done my yard, I then went back to write for the Medium to PSG tests - I shall definitely sleep well tonight, and I think Maddie will too!



 

WelshHoarder

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Baby Welshie and small person had a fantastic time out this morning - 65.21%, their best score so far (3rd attempt at Intro A), and came 4th in their class. Baby Welshie did go a bit bog-eyed and babyish once she was in front of the judge after a super warm up (typical!), but small person rode well, and it was all a lot more fluent and confident than their first two outings; we couldn’t have asked for more. Some lovely comments from the judge, lots to like, and lots to work on, but all in all it was a great trip out.

Lesson is confirmed as on for tomorrow, and small person is asking to canter and jump, so it thankfully looks like Thursday’s tumble hasn’t knocked their confidence too badly either, which is a huge relief - it’s been a long, hard road over the winter and into spring building them up ❤️

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Goldenstar

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Baby Welshie and small person had a fantastic time out this morning - 65.21%, their best score so far (3rd attempt at Intro A), and came 4th in their class. Baby Welshie did go a bit bog-eyed and babyish once she was in front of the judge after a super warm up (typical!), but small person rode well, and it was all a lot more fluent and confident than their first two outings; we couldn’t have asked for more. Some lovely comments from the judge, lots to like, and lots to work on, but all in all it was a great trip out.

Lesson is confirmed as on for tomorrow, and small person is asking to canter and jump, so it thankfully looks like Thursday’s tumble hasn’t knocked their confidence too badly either, which is a huge relief - it’s been a long, hard road over the winter and into spring building them up ❤️

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That is a beautiful pony
 

Northern

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Back in here after a boring few weeks with nothing to report. It's winter and cold and dark and wet with MUD.
Suffice to say there was not too much riding happening between the above and night shift.
I had entered a dressage training day intending to do our first elementary test out, the leadup wasn't great o_O BUT I picked up my new horse trailer on Friday, so decided to go ahead and go to the outing anyway to "test" the trailer ;) . We aren't quite ready to "officially" compete at Elem yet, we are still working on our laterals and suppleness and canter (which has become a bit wild lately). But having been working on some elements in training, the opportunity to do a whole test in test conditions was a good one.
The novice test felt a bit mundane (-ly ridden and got a mundane score!), but the elementary felt great albeit a bit wild in parts, with one super shoulder in and one non existent :cool: A good friend generously warmed us up which was a great help! Scores were nothing to write home about, but the feedback is what we went for.
L feels so much more rideable than even a few months ago, and the canter has especially improved over the last few weeks. I am super happy with how our training is progressing :) Would never have thought we could run through an Elementary 6 months ago!
I'm entered for a dressage clinic next weekend, which I am looking forward to.

Hope everyone up (far North) has a super and warm weekend!

Cheeky photo of the lovely girl, we never have photos taken of us so I had to buy some!
(Excuse the mud, no getting away from it at the moment!).

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milliepops

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well we still can't go anywhere but I'm enjoying continuing with the training at home. Last lesson a lightbulb turned on and yesterday it was a bloody stadium floodlight, the exercise we were given to improve Kira's activity in the canter piris has had a huge impact on all the canter work, I'm so chuffed.

It's really simple, we started on a circle and just collect the canter back and then extend for 2 strides before collecting again, and repeat. in order to make the extension truly only 2 strides you almost have to give the aid to collect before the horse has even gone forward, and therefore can't rely on momentum to build up to get the extension, it has to be from the *aid*.
Initially i didn't trust her to respond quickly enough so we would have 4 or 5 strides forward but that's a sticking plaster that has to be ripped off, and working on the exercise honestly dramatically improved her responsiveness and she totally bought into it too, which is important ;)

Ran through the whole of the Inter1 canterwork with our new sensitivity installed and it all felt so much more rideable. this is such an interesting stage, learning to ride one test really well seems like a really limited aim but it has uncovered so much... it's obvious that the same will apply at I2 and GP if we ever get there but I'm starting to reconsider how I'd approach things at the lower levels with the next horse too.
Next homework is to do the same exercise in trot, I know this will be hard because she will offer canter if I'm too bullish about it.

Clever tired cobface :D

 

The Fuzzy Furry

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I got a message at tea time last night to let me know that my arena eventing clinic was cancelled for today. So consulted with friend who was also going at later time, and ended up doing a sj session at their yard which is a 6 min walk hack up the lane, along with her son on his horse.
Arena is a 40 x 20 so is the smallest I've jumped in yet, but apart from having to balance back to trot a few times on corners, B went v well with no poles down or stops, just a bit of throttle sticking....
All 3 of us helped each other, as we each did a 30 min session solo, and cooled down whilst the next tacked up, then parked our own one up on the yard, and put jumps up or down as required.

Not at weekend, but I'd forgotten I've also got a Trec clinic booked for Tuesday morning to box out to!
 

J_sarahd

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I did a bit of a “spook-busting” jumping session with pony. Set up 3 jumps - a cross with two eeyore fillers to the side, a small upright with two blocks as fillers and then an 80cm “spread” (it was barely a spread) with a filler. I only put that fence up to jump if he was a good boy over the rest. Today wasn’t about height but we don’t have many fillers at the yard so had to go that high. Plus I wanted a jump that I actually had to ride to and couldn’t just make him jump from stand still.

He looked at the eeyores (apparently every horse has an issue with those at first!) but because it was small I was able to get him over it easily. No issue at all at the upright, just took me straight into. So I decided to jump the spread. I was a bit nervous so I didn’t ride him into it and he ran out. But then a tap on the shoulder and leg on and he flew it. Jumped it far too big, but just very happy he went over it. So did it again and left him at that. I will definitely do something similar a few more times before we are next out. I think it’s 90% my riding so it’ll be good for my riding/confidence to keep doing it.
 

CanteringCarrot

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Let see...Friday we had a really good ride where everything just flowed easily and relaxed. Gave him the day off on Saturday. Then spent the ride today trying to get him to use and flex through his hind end. This was a bit of a discussion at a first. At the end the canter was very good. I was actually doing a canter exercise like Milliepops mentioned in her post. It's definitely valuable for our canter quality and activeness. Canter half-pass and the start to zig zags is relaxed, but could use more expression.

Been riding dressage for just over 3 years now and I would've liked to have seen more progress by now, tbh. Some days he really is on it and I think we can really go far, other days I think about scrapping the whole thing and walking away. 🤷‍♀️ I actually think dressage is worse for my overly critical tendencies.

Have a lesson tomorrow and I'm hoping eventually I'll get out of this mental rut I'm in.

Sweaty beast and sweaty rider today. F'n humid here!

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CanteringCarrot

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If its any consolidation I swapped to pure dressage in 2009 so have been pushing this boulder up the dressage hills for a fair bit more than 3 years 😂
Idk that I can last that long 🤣

However, a friend did put it perspective the other day. I got this horse 4 years and no one could even get on him. We messed around off an on with hoof issues, allergies, and loose stifle that he grew out of. He was spooky, nervous, and unsure about life. I never rode pure dressage, just got myself around the sandbox so I could ride cross country, and then had a break in my riding for a bit. Our access to good dressage instruction has varied...so then I realized maybe we are doing alright 🤣

But I think I'll ease off a bit then come back to some of the challenging stuff in a few weeks. Sometimes this helps us come back stronger and more refreshed.
 

milliepops

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sounds like a plan, you have to do what works for you :)

I find the whole thing endlessly fascinating, I mean horse sports in general but for me at the moment we are settled on dressage as it plays to the strengths of little Kira, just how you can teach them to do weird meaningless things without the power of language, and they willingly try, it's sort of bonkers really. I don't think I'll ever want to stop trying :cool:
 
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