Saturday, July 17, 2010

Riding: The Art of Keeping the Horse Between You and the Ground

I've been practicing this art and find that sometimes it is a challenge! 
The other day I had a close call. I was working Pippin in the round pen...again. He was doing his funky move at the trot, so we were going back and forth between walking and trotting. His 'funky move' is a quick side step, almost always moving his hind quarters to the right, when I ask for a trot. Sometimes he just drops his hind end and moves up under himself. I have found he's been sensitive to seeing my hands and feeling my legs so I've been working to desensitize him to this by moving my hands, patting him, swinging my arms out, dropping my stirrups and picking them up again, and brushing my legs along his sides. We had been doing this and he had settled into a nice trot when I blew it. My toe came out a bit too far and caught the vertical bar of the panel of the round pen. It caught enough to begin to pull me off the saddle. Oh, and did I mention that Pippin seems to get unsettled if the rider gets off balance?!! Oh, and I suppose I should mention that he doesn't like people hanging onto his mane! So, there I was, hanging out over space, hand buried in the mane and horse showing some signs of being unsettled by trotting a bit faster....but he kept it all together and I managed to get centered on the saddle again and all's well that ends well. Well, sort of....the ankle is a bit sore, but only when it has to bend!
Maybe I should take up a different art. Perhaps origami. Nah, too much risk of getting paper cuts!


  1. Ouch! It's good that you didn't come off - he sounds like the sort that would have found that alarming, too!

  2. I second that Ouch!!! I know that hurts! Glad you didn't come off!

  3. I don't know which would be worse...hitting the ground or getting a paper cut. Those paper cuts can be brutal. Glad you recovered and stayed on.

    You are doing well with your boys. But I do think a lot of Pippin's riding issues could be fixed with 30 or 60 days with a good Pro. Some of these cowboy trainers that incorporate natural horsemanship with their traditional cowboy experience, are really good horseman.


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