Riding on a Tuesday
Another riding night and it is a jumping week – which of course I love. I always get a little nervous for a jumping lesson though. Not scared really, just a little adrenaline thrill of nerves. Once I start on a jump course the nervousness pretty much goes away and then while I wait for my turn to jump again, the nervousness comes back.
So tonight was fun as usual, we really worked on slow, slow, slowing Lulu down and getting her off her forehand. I think for the most part that I was pretty successful there. There were some awkward fences, but I feel like I accomplished what I was supposed to. For the last jump course, Ann raised the fences for the first horse (a big thoroughbred) to jump. They looked a little big to me at the time. Well, not fantastically big, maybe three feet, even a little lower, not sure, but a little bigger than I’ve been generally doing these days. Anyway, after the thoroughbred went, Ann told me to go. I hesitated and almost asked her if she was going to lower the jumps first and then thought to myself, ‘this is crazy, these are nothing. I am more than able to jump these fences, they’re really not even very big.’ And I did. And I wasn’t even the least bit scared.
Anyway, I learned that even with the bigger fences we could slow things down to super, super slow and still get a nice spot, a nice jump. I had much more control, there were a couple of awkward lines, but everything seemed so much more doable. I think I’m getting a little better with my position too, I seem to be able to stick with Lulu better in general, I’m not getting left behind as much and my release is generally good, I think. But I do have to concentrate on keeping my upper body quiet, sometimes I still do that big hunter jump movement, sort of throwing my upper body over the fence. But at least when I do it, I realize it right away (and curse myself, of course).
So generally I’m pretty pleased. I really am seeing progress. I still get rather frustrated with myself, but less and less often. I’m pretty encouraged seeing actual progress from week to week. There is hope for me yet.