The Horse Is Not The Only One With Issues In The Sandbox

Training Journal

If you’re riding a horse, you’ve already won.


I’m skipping Mood on Monday this week. Right now is all about reopening in the US. Impossible to talking about without resorting to politics. First, this is not harmonious. Second, I have nothing to add that you don’t already know.

As for what I believe? First, economics versus health is a false choice. A viable society needs both. Second, I stand with science. In the dim and distant past, I went to a magnet school with science in the title. It’s the bedrock of my worldview. You can probably construct most of my positions from there.

Enough of that.
To set the scene. The workspace for the horses is a section of their pasture. There is no fence, other than the perimeter fence around the entire field. The “ring” has slight slant across the short side.

Trotting downhill turns, especially to the right, on the flat. Prepare in advance. Sit up. Keep my weight to the outside. Don’t stress if he corkscrews. Crap. He has dropped his weight to the inside. It feels like a runaway freight train. Too late now. Can’t fix it by yanking with the reins. Keep going. Get a better balance next time.


Trotting downhill turns, as part of a “course” of poles. Go thataway.

Cantering at home, on the flat. (Audible intake of breath, with tooth-sucking noise.) We’re not ready for that yet. He was doing okay with cantering when we were in a ring where the fence could help with the steering. At home, were just out in the middle of nowhere. He’s not going to run off, but I have to do too much hanging on his mouth to keep him in the general ring area. Need to do a lot more trotting first. Work on our transitions, maybe on a circle first.


Cantering at home, headed toward a pole. Wheeeee, here we go.

And that, sports fans, is why I will never earn my dressage queen tiara.

Stay safe. Stay sane.
Katherine Walcott

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