Horses, Life, A Touch of Geek

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The Dixie Cup
April 30-May 2, 2015
Georgia International Horse Park
Conyers, GA, USA

Sport Psych
When Tim Price and Wesko knocked down a pole in the final phase of the Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event, the mistake cost them $56,000. That was the difference between first and second place. Can you imagine the pressure?

Karen (Lende) O’Connor, the USEF color commentator this year, has won three times at Rolex, including the CCI**** in 1999 with Prince Panache [Wiki: Rolex KTD]. On Sunday’s livestream, she said you have to “Embrace it.”

My motto for today:

Embrace the Nerves

I’ll let you know how it goes.

More on the subject:
Finally Farm: Revisiting the Psychology of Riding
Horse Collaborative: Understanding the Mental Skills of Highly Successful Riders
Horse Junkies United: 5 Tips to Improve Your Mental Game for the Show Ring, presented by The Clothes Horse

Technical Considerations: Position
At the last show [Report], I lost control of my shoulders. I drooped. I flopped. I pitched forward with abandon. [Photo series: Dueling Disciplines]

At my next lesson, I had a crop shoved down the back of jodphurs and another laid across my forearms. The first reminded me to sit straight. The second insisted that I lift my hands, my arms, and therefore my shoulders. I felt like a fool. But it worked. Is it possible that maybe, finally, I understand what to do with the upper six inches of my torso?

I can achieve the correct position at a halt and under controlled conditions, i.e. on Bingo in the round pen at home. The next step is to maintain my form on different horses, when I need to adjust the horse, and/or as I get tired. Perfect isn’t going to happen right away. Today, I’m hoping for “Decent effort.”

Technical Considerations: Traffic Management
Despite my less than stellar showing, I did improve on looking where I was going in the show ring [Counting]. Unfortunately, I started looking in the MIDDLE of the curve and as I started down the long side, exactly what I would do if I were looking for a jump out of a corner. I need to look BEFORE the curve, so that I can plan a path around the other competitors.

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