A short lesson recap

It's been very wet here the last few weeks, which is greatly needed, but makes riding hard. So Henry and I haven't had much of a chance to try out our new saddle. However, it was high time for a lesson, so I packed us both up and headed off early on Monday morning.

No photos because it rained :(

My coach had a grid and a serpentine exercise set up. We had a chat, she had a close look at my new saddle, I warmed up and then we got jumping! 

Henry was feeling pretty fresh after a light few weeks, which was actually quite nice. It was good to feel him ready to step up when I needed him too, and he kept offering the canter. I liked the feeling of that, and I do think he is happier in the new saddle too. 

We started trotting up the grid with all the poles on the ground. It took a few goes to get Henry to soften and lift his back, I had to get him around my leg on the flat and bending and counter bending before he softened but it happened quite quickly. We then gradually built the grid up, with me keeping Henry soft and forward something in and keeping my eyes p and chest open. I also needed to come in thinking shoulder fore because Hen kept landing on the wrong leading leg. If I thought about riding a circle on a straight line he was straight and landed on the correct lead.

Because I was too busy thinking about Henrys legs and therefore my legs I forgot about my hands, so then I had to make a more conscious effort to release with my hands over the jumps. Then I tried a little too hard over the oxer out and threw my body, but at least I allowed Henry to move his body?! Eh I know it's a problem I have sometimes, usually whenI am thinking too hard about something. 

Once the grid was fully built up, we came down the grid, turned right, circled and came over a serpentine of verticals set down the middle of the arena. it went ok the first time, I just needed to keep Henry around my inside leg a bit more. we repeated the exercise and he was a lot more supple through the exercise and we were done!

The new saddle felt great over the jumps, and it makes it so easy to keep my leg under me. I do however need to get my core stronger again, to help me and Hen out. I don't always land in a heap, but I don't recover as fast as I used to either! Ugh, children ruin your body. 

It was a useful, technical lesson, and it helped to clarify a few things in my head on the flat and highlighted a few things I need to improve over a jump. Hopefully things will settle down a bit more and I can have more regular lessons again!


  1. It is so good to see you blogging again! I'm fascinated following your journey through motherhood and horses, and with a sport change as well.

  2. that sounds like a really fun exercise!! i need to do more of this stuff with charlie too.....


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