Happy Happy: A Lesson Recap


Last week Dino and I went to our first lesson since he got injured! AND IT WAS GREAT.

Homeboy was super pumped when he saw the trailer pull up to the barn and hopped right on, ready for an adventure. It may have just been a super low-key semi-private flat lesson since we're both pretty soft and fluffy at the moment, but man was it fun!

Dino has been bored out of his furry little skull lately, and he was absolutely beside himself with happiness to go out on a field trip to a new place. While we aren't back at the fancy-shmancy barn this winter, we are at another local facility that's also quite nice and is scheduled to get new indoor footing soon. Although with the way Dino felt about the outing, we could have pulled up absolutely anywhere and he would have been just as excited.

It was awesome to see my trainer after such a long break, and it just felt so good to get back to doing some actual work again. After a solid month-and-then-some of time off and very limited riding, being in an arena and receiving instruction was such a treat. Dino, for once, agreed.

The lesson itself was very basic, focusing on getting the horses moving freely forward off the leg and reminding the riders of how we ought to be using our bodies. We spend a good amount of time switching from two-point to posting to sitting at the trot as a body-awareness exercise, noticing when and how our horses changed their way of going relative to our own shortcomings in each seat.

He loves field trips so much! 
I was able to maintain a great trot while posting, in two point I dropped my inside shoulder and got crooked, and when I sat I tended to collapse my upper body which caused Dino to slow waaay down. Focusing on staying stretched upwards and seeking a feeling of having my inside shoulder 'cranked' back helped improve things quite a bit.

Dino was a bit sticky going into the first canter, but after he warmed up a bit in that gait he seemed to really enjoy cruising around on the rail and stretching out. He hadn't cantered under saddle more than a few steps in weeks, so it must have felt good!

We spent the rest of the lesson working on leg yields, cutting off the first corner of each short side and then moving the horses outwards into the next corner. After we'd mastered this exercise at the trot, we added in a canter depart after the leg yield, cantered down the long side, transitioned back down to trot at the next corner, and so on.

Dino had some things to say about this exercise when we first added in each 'difficult' part, and gave me some 'tude the first time I asked him to leg yield as well as the first time I asked for a canter depart. But once he figured out the pattern, he seemed to really be having a great time with it! The quality of his trot got better and better as we went, he was getting super sharp off the leg, the canter departs were nice and crisp and round, and he felt fabulous in the canter. Before long I had that familiar ear-to-ear grin on my face. It was just so much fun to be DOING THINGS with my pony again, and it made my heart so happy to feel him having so much fun, too!

We ended the ride with a nice long stretchy trot, and both Dino and I felt quite pleased with ourselves. There's just nothing like a great ride with great friends to rekindle your motivation!


  1. Wheeeee the triumphant heroes return! So glad Dino is back in business and that you guys are kicking butt again! ☺️

  2. What a great lesson. I do love the leg yield to canter exercises.

  3. Yay! Sounds like you all haven't missed a beat despite the unfortunate vacation time.

  4. Yay so glad to hear he is back in action!

  5. Hooray a lesson! That exercise sounds really handy :)

  6. Aw, sounds like you were both rejuvenated after the break. What a great reentry into riding after your hiatus. =)


Post a Comment

Popular Posts