Coming off of Spring Bay it was clear that if we can’t get our dressage in line Annie and I will not be competitive at Novice. I decided that if Annie and I were going to go to any more recognized events I needed to tackle our dressage problem head on. I was feeling really frustrated. Knowing that if we could just get more consistent in the sandbox we would be placing consistently in the ribbons was hard to swallow.
I spent a lot of time beating myself up and comparing Houston and Annie on the flat. News flash – they are totally different horses… and also Houston was a tough cookie at Annie’s age as well. Frustration has no place in the saddle though so first I took a couple weeks of light riding and avoided the dressage saddle (read: bit) like the plague. Then came Rolex and all of the fun that goes along with it. I talked to my vet (her teeth are fine), I talked to my friends, and I talked to a couple of trainers. Short of xraying her head (which is not off the table) there is nothing easily seen wrong with Annie. She is fine on the ground. She is fine in a (sna)hackamore… And you know what… with an attitude and equipment change on my part she is getting more consistent in the bridle.
It is of course not perfect by any stretch of the imagination. I regularly joke that it makes your eyes bleed. BUT there are moments of progress. Those moments are what makes the blood/sweat/tears worth it. I am happy to say that we seem to be back on track for more regular lessons and I hope that the consistent help will continue this trend of progress.
Riding green horses isn’t for the faint of heart but when it all comes together there isn’t much that is more rewarding. I don’t know what is up next for us but whatever it is I know we will have fun when we get there! Anyone else taking a break from the ring lately to do some more homework?