On Thursday we trailered down for a lesson with Mary. This was the first time I had ridden since the trail ride with the Western saddle on Saturday. With Baron I never know what to expect. He has good days and bad days; sometimes he’s interested in everything but me and other days he tunes right in and we have a great ride. Fortunately my lesson was one of his best days yet! He was calm and focused right from the start. We didn’t even have to lunge him! I hopped right on and we went to work on trot circles. The whole lesson was upward and downward transitions, walk to trot and trot to walk. We did big and small circles and some figure eights.
I am better at upward transitions. Those went pretty smoothly. The downward’s were a little rocky, because I have a tendency to lean forward in the saddle and when he slows down, I pitch forward. The great thing about Baron is that when we’re doing rising trot, if I sit deep in the saddle, lean back and stop posting, he understands that this means to slow down. So we worked on my seat (sitting deeper) and leaning back slightly when I half halt him to a walk. He is very responsive; I guess on the racetrack he was used to listening to the jockey’s cues. He is doing fantastic, now I just have to work on my riding!
I have been very impressed with my trainer so far. She has really helped fine tune my riding by helping me with my seat and hands. Yesterday she stressed having quiet hands, being able to post and move my hips without moving my hands. She said that if I’m posting and my hands are moving up and down, I’m basically jangling the bit and confusing my horse. It’s like static and he has to try and decipher what all the extra “noise” means.
The highlight of the lesson for me was my trainer’s comment that I’m a “very pretty rider.” That is the ultimate compliment for me. There are certain people that just plain look good on a horse. Oh how I would love to be one of those people!