We have some Stage IV students on a exam preparation course and they are currently doing jumping sessions so we get to do some of those too. Got to jump two horses over 1m course and it was great to be actually doing something rather than teaching only (apart from me feeling rather alien in the saddle after barely riding in the last two weeks).
Then onto my next lesson with a very committed client who has her own horse, a youngster, and who came to me last year to enquire about some training. She insisted I told her bluntly what I thought about her then current level and what I would recommend...so me being perfectionist me I told her to book twice weekly lunge lessons for about 6 months, then she can have the reins again and start proper riding ;) She was not a beginner by any means but this is simply my ideal system and if someone insist on my opinion then hey ho.
So she went away to have a good think about it and...came back in early March ready for a challenge. If someone ever EVER doubts the benefits of advanced lunge lessons should come and see this girl in action. I wish I have filmed her at her first session and then once in two weeks or so. The progress you make when you really focus is remarkable. I wish I could have those lessons!!
Her feel improved immensely which proves what I believe in - that any rider can learn to ride with 'feel'. Sure, not everyone can develop super intricate coordination and not everyone has that elusive talent but knowledgeable riding is not a rocket science and every rider owes it to the horse to at least try to understand the movement they intend to work on.
Lunge lesson done so quick quick to change and run to jump into the car for my driving lesson. I am making progress apparently, phew!
Out of the car, change back into my riding stuff, grab a toastie (thank goodness for the lovely lady who gets my food done on time!) and ride a fab 5 year old which I really enjoy schooling.
He's got such a workman like attitude and really does try his best. Super ride (only wish I wasn't so all over the place, get annoyed with myself for how quickly I lose the quality of my skills if I don't ride regularly).
Chop chop. Off the youngster, finished him off as nobody available at the yard, then quick to run staff training. I decided to take them XC as they really need to do more of it plus M. rode my "baby horse" and I knew he would enjoy it ;)
Pic.: M. on D., the horse I would buy as a fun horse if I only could! He's a bit of a trouble but I totally adore him.
He did indeed. Maybe apart from the first jump which he overjumped in humongous fashion sending M. flying, literally FLYING above the saddle, legs in a split, hands in a desperate position and a loud squeak - cartoon style!!
This is how he jumped it the second time (M. still sqeaking he he), think 3 to 4 times higher and you will get a picture of the first go..;)
Vid.: M. on D.
He got better and better as we went over more and more jumps, really got it in the end and breezed through. I once took him over some of the jumps so we went back to those and he just went into 'point-i-will-jump' mode :)
Vid.: M. on D.
The tires remained sticky until the very end though, he obviously must be thinking there is a horse eating monster hidden in them.
The other two horses jumped super, they are good old pathfinders and confidence givers and both riders did a decent job especially considering they can get a little nervous (to say the least).
Back from hot footing the woods (as I wasn't on a horse I did fair amount of hiking from one fence to another) and quick quick to be on time in the arena for my next and last jumping lesson.
Tired me now. Think hot bath is due!