Free Lessons with Anne Kursinski

Emma over at Fraidy Cat Eventing posted a link to sign up for free video lessons with Anne Kursinski.  Click here to sign up!

The first lesson gets down to basics, covering the use of cavaletti poles.  What a great idea to watch these video lessons on days that it is too cold to ride, and work on the cavaletti exercises, which are a great alternative to jumping for those of us who are stuck riding inside for the season.

Can’t wait to try some of her exercises out.

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Lesson Update and Book Review

My lesson was great today!  Mabou looked pretty sleepy beforehand but he certainly woke up as soon as we started jumping!

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Sleepy pony
Sleepy pony

We did a few courses with the jumps set at 2’9″- 3′, and really worked on me being straight.  My problem is that my right shoulder is more forward then my left… which I adamantly blame on the fact that I sit at a desk all day writing with my right arm forward and using my mouse with my right arm forward.  Soooo basically I need to quit my job to better my riding.  His lead changes were excellent though, so at least I must have been somewhat centered for those.

monogram all the things
monogram all the things

I also broke out my new black monogrammed saddle pad!  Love it!!  Today I ordered a helmet monogram and a horse jumping monogram decal for my Macbook and iron on monograms for my TS breeches!  Monogram crazy today!

I just finished reading a new book recently, and since I am always looking for good horse books (and maybe you guys are too) I thought I should share!  It’s called Ambition by Natalie Keller Reinert and it is about a young eventing trainer.  I couldn’t put it down, the author did a great job capturing the accurate equestrian experience.   I got it from Amazon for those who want to check it out!

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Lesson Recap

Although I don’t have a single photo or video, believe me when I say my lesson was FABULOUS!  It was the kind of lesson that leaves you grinning and on cloud nine for the rest of the day because your horse was so amazing!  We worked on really being straight on the long sides and bending through the corners in our flatwork warm up, then did some big serpentines with flying changes in the center (pony was excellent).  As for jumping, we did a bunch of single fences with big rollbacks to really make me sit up, rock him back and collect him and bend through the turns.  He felt like BUTTER, bending and collecting felt effortless.  What a good boy, he worked so hard today.

Real Men Wear Florals
Real Men Wear Florals

It is finally cold enough to break out the sheets.  As you see above, his sheet is very manly indeed.  The mares love it! And… check out this matchy matchy fun

matching puppy!
matching puppy!

I just love it… Can’t wait to get a photo of the two of them together!

Give me treats I was a good boy
Give me treats I was a good boy

Lesson ReCap

First off- since it is officially fall I broke out the rust breeches today! So anyway, after the weekend’s disappointment, I had a great hack yesterday and decided to lesson today.

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We warmed up with some flatwork… .making sure that I got him moving with big elastic steps and trying to quiet my seat and sending him forward just using my legs, not posting bigger.  We did a lot of sitting trot and worked on me sitting up and back, as I like to lean forward a little too much sometimes!

Flatwork!
Flatwork!

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Then we did a very challenging jump exercise that had a single vertical jump on one side and a cavaletti pole on the other side.  We had to make an oval and jump the jump to the vertical.  It looked like this:

circle jumps

At first horsie kept landing on the wrong lead and then giving me beautiful changes, but after a few times he figured it out and landed correctly.

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We started small and really worked on the flatwork inbetween the jumps, making sure that I pushed him out on the circle with my inside leg, used my outside leg to keep his haunches from fishtailing out and kept my shoulders straight (which is hardest for me ugh)

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I also was using my outside rein a little too much to pull his outside shoulder around the circle, so trainer had me really exaggerate the separation of my hands and open my outside rein, which would prevent me from being able to pull back on it.  It made a huge difference and pony immediately softened.  Then trainer raised the fence and we kept going.

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The bigger height definitely helped to force him to rock back and balance himself.  Then trainer raised the fence again, and by this point I could feel he was getting tired, but he has so much heart he was a great boy and jumped super!

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What a great lesson, I really feel like he was so good and didn’t get annoyed that we were doing the same exercise for a while.  He was listening well, and I love him in the rubber pelham!  Rubber bits are our friends apparently!  I have lots of homework now and things to work on from trainer, which I like because it helps me structure my rides.  Afterward I rubbed him down with liniment and let him have a nice long graze.  It is supposed to rain tomorrow, so he will get a well deserved day off.  LOVE MY PONY!