Monday, March 18, 2013

Trotting Chrome! - Chrome's Seventeenth Ride

 Hey guys!  I rode Chrome today instead of taking him for a hand walk out on the road.  I rode in the round pen because I decided to work on trotting!  I had my husband video tape us, but I'm waaay too embarrassed to post it.... my riding position has gotten horrible with no practice or lessons in over seven years... I have no core strength at all and couldn't figure out how to post to Chrome's trot at all because he was slow, fast, slow, wiggle, drop shoulder, fast, turn head to outside, wiggle, slow, fast, etc.  A typical baby lol.

I've been longeing him some, so he's figuring out the trot on cue.  He actually did really well picking up the trot!  His biggest problem was maintaining the trot and circles.  He just doesn't have the strength yet.  We only trotted six or seven strides per trot, then I would click/treat.  I definitely need to strengthen my core because I kept collapsing forward when he would stop so suddenly for his treat.  :)

He nailed his whoas which is awesome, because that's one of the things that had me worried.  :)  I started out in the saddle, but he was being balky so I pulled it off and rode bareback.  It didn't change the way he was acting so I don't think the saddle is to blame.  I think it's just really hard work for him because he has no muscles!!

There was one point when he ducked in sharply on the circle and tried to stop so I tapped him with the whip and he ducked his head as he jumped forward into the trot again.  It felt like a crow hop, but it wasn't.  If that's the worst "attitude" he pulls I'm totally cool with that hehe.  I think I totally psyche myself out sometimes because when I think about it I start thinking of everything that could go wrong, but once I'm on his back I'm as happy and confident as can be.  I get to start taking dressage lessons again in June (on a school horse) so hopefully that will boost my confidence some more as I get my strength and position back.

I rode for probably twenty minutes but only got about five minutes on tape because my memory card was full.... go me!  :-/  I took some screenshots off of the video of some of our better moments.  I was wearing jeans and sneakers so my pants leg pulled up.... I'm wearing breeches from now on lol.  The jeans were horribly uncomfortable.  Like I said my position is horrible.... I constantly caught myself looking down which causes me to slouch and my toes kept pointing out and my feet sliding forward because I wasn't on my inner thigh/calf like I'm supposed to me.  It's just a lack of practice over the years.  I'll get it back I hope.  :)

Sorry for the rambling.  Here are the pictures.

 Our trot!  This is only the ?fourth? ride that we've trotted on and our first ride trotting more than three or so strides.  I can't wait until he develops some rhythm.... he can be sooooo balky.  It should get better with some more practice on the long line I hope.  :)

I like this picture.  :D  My position sucks, but he sure is pretty!!

I'm changing my whip so that's why my arms are stretched forward.   This shows how he was reaching down at times in the walk.  I also like the way the sun is highlighting him.  :)

And this last one is for Faran.  He stood right there watching us the whole time!  Such a good boy.  :D

Anyway that's all for now.  I'm going to stick with my plan to do the Couch To 5k with him in hand and on the longe to get him in shape because he was definitely struggling with me on his back at the trot.  He could barely trot going to the right.  He kept spiraling in on a tiny circle and trying to turn around, so we will be spending a LOT more time in that direction on the longe!!


  1. I love the second picture, you guys look so chilled out and relaxed together!

  2. congratulations. it's totally normal for all the changing of gait and balance as he learns to balance you up there. I would keep the saddle. a few things you can do to help is to go into a half-seat so that he figures out how to balance. The second is to put a strap across the pommel attached to the d-rings so you can help you keep your seat.

  3. The speeding up and slowing down is what my horse trainer complains about while riding Gabbrielle. It makes it impossible to post in rhythm. I glanced at the first picture before reading and actually thought your posture was pretty darn good. It's hard to sit perfect in the saddle if you haven't been doing it every day. And even if you have been doing it every day, if you don't have someone watching and correcting you who is an equitation expert, it's easy to develop bad habits. Some days I concentrate just on my horse. Other days I concentrate just on myself. Some day I hope to put it all together. I'm glad you got to work on the trot.

  4. Amber, that's totally my favorite picture too. :D

    NuzMuz, it does make posting impossible!!! I finally gave up and sat the trot and he seemed to do much better with that. And thank you for the compliment on my position. I really appreciate that. I'm really looking forward to taking lessons again so I do have someone on the ground reminding me lol. It is so easy to fall back into those bad habits, especially when concentrating on a baby. :)

    Teresa, I can't believe I didn't think to use a half seat or a bucking strap (well the Aussie saddle has a horn so I can use that). I think both of those things will help me stay in balance better with all of his wiggling. I'll try it next time and give you an update to let you know how it went. :D I'm also going to have my husband in the center to encourage him to stay on the rail, that way I don't have to worry so much about steering. :) Thanks for the advice guys!!!

  5. I think your position looks great!! HOwever, if it didn't who cares. You can't look good on a baby. I remember riding Bre super early so no one could see us. She would zoom off, then dead stop-rear-headflip, her canter was like riding the legs of four different sized horses and I felt like we could fall over at any second. You just can't look pretty on a greenie. You might want to crank up your stirrups a bit. It is easier to keep a stable base and make it easy to switch between half seat and posting.

  6. I will definitely try taking my stirrups up a bit. They did feel a bit long so that could be part of why I couldn't keep my seat. :) The lack of a strong core is the biggest part lol.


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