Friday, January 22, 2010

A Bit of Work

Riding Tucker Again

I rode Tucker in the arena today for a short work. I can definitely feel how much my stomach muscles must work even when I am simply riding on a longish rein.

As the last time, I did not ask for much more than forward work, and to my delight, Tucker was happy to comply. As a matter of fact, this time, when I asked for the right canter, he hardly protested at all. Just a little ear back, "Do I hafta?" and then into a forward canter.

I mostly focused on sitting up nice and straight but I can still feel myself sitting a little off to the right seat bone. Sometimes it's a consequence of how my horse moves under me, but it is my responsibility to sit straight in order to help him move straight.

I'd put up a little jump in the center of the arena, thinking it would prove a worthy diversion to keep the both of us from getting bored. The first time we headed for it at the trot, Tuck did a nice one stride evasion and went around it. So the next time, I made sure I kept him straight. He got just a tiny bit fractious, and we ended up jumping it rather awkwardly. No real problem, but I realized at that moment there was no point in trying to do it again as I was totally not in the right physical or mental frame of mind to work on getting it right. Had he been more quiet or willing to go over without my demands, perhaps we could have gone on, but I decided to stop then and there.

Once more, less was better.

Earlier in the day, I got a call from a friend who owns one of the farms just across the woods. She has a rider boarding there who is looking for someone to share some of her riding/horse interests. She is, apparently, an endurance rider and would like to explore the trails out back with a friend. That would be nice for me as not only will it encourage me to ride more, but I would have some company taking Chance out. (I'm not sure Tucker is quite settled enough out off the property, and Toby, though an excellent trail horse, is would have to be worked for a while to elevate his fitness enough for longer rides.) Chance, on the other hand, loves the trails, is young, and is fun!

So, I guess we'll see. I am definitely not and endurance rider, but going out with another rider does make the whole thing a lot more enjoyable. Perhaps it will be the incentive I need to get some more saddle time.

And a good reason to get more fit.


  1. Oh, endurance riders. Very fun. We see them a lot when we go on trail rides in the foothills. Enjoy the opportunity!

    And don't hurt yourself... you're coming back awfully fast.

  2. It's nice you got to ride again today. Glad to hear you stopped and didn't push it over the jump too much. A little at a time is just fine.

    Sounds like it would be fun to have a horse buddy to ride with. That always seems to motivate me too.

  3. Anonymous8:09 PM

    Smart to stop when you did - I think that's a big part of good riding - knowing when to stop!

  4. I'm so with you on sitting off to one side. It's incredibly frustrating. Like you said: it may be the horse, but it's our responsibility to stay straight.

    I love trail riding, especially with friends. Sounds like you and Chance will have a blast out there. Who knows, maybe you can even get into endurance riding. I've heard there are a few Warmbloods doing it these days.

  5. An occasional riding companion would be fun. I love to chit chat and ride at the same time. New friends are always good.

  6. company for hacking will be just what you need! Chance will love it, and so will you! and really, you know, it might do Tuck the world of good as well to have a companion

  7. I have learned that from you - that even if the horse is uneven it's the rider's responsibility to sit straight. I think it has made a huge difference with Tetley.

  8. sometimes it's fun for the horse, too, to do something different. A friend of mine with endurance horses and a jumper liked to take them to the beach once in a while and just let them gallop a few miles. The horses loved it - something different and stress-less.
    So, take Tucker out on the trail!
    (Of course, I am an endurance rider, and I would be happy to bring you over to the Dark Side for a bit : )
    - The Equestrian Vagabond