Horses, Life, A Touch of Geek

Archive for the ‘Saddle Seat’ Category

Show Photos: Pro-Am 2017, The Wonderful Mr. Whizbang

Driving Thursday

W is for The Wonderful Mr. Whizbang. If you are joining me from Blogging A To Z, welcome! Since the blog is already daily, with topics for each day [About: Schedule], there is no specific A To Z theme. I may even skip a few letters. Gasp. Clutch the pearls. The goal for this year is less crazy, more visiting. [Ze State of Ze Blog 2014]

~~~

HB Whizbang on the way to wining our inaugural Academy Driving class.
Photo by Doug Shiflet

Thank you to Shiflet Photography for giving photo certificates as Academy prizes [Show Report II].

My photos: Shiflet Photography > View Proofs > 2017 Pro Am >
120 – Aca Showmanship Driving
121 – Aca Reinsmanship Driving
132 – Aca Equitation Adult WTC
133 – Aca Showmanship Adult WTC
136 – Aca WTC Championship
Purple vest, black helmet
Note that everyone had helmets! It may have been required for juniors.

This is the first time I did not buy a riding picture. It was that bad. [Show Report I].

Coach Courtney’s thesis that it’s all in by head gets further proof by the lovely pictures of Desi in her other classes.
127 – Aca Equitation WT 9- 10
128 – Aca Showmanship WT 9- 10
Blue vest on the rider, knee boots on the horse.
Yes, being shown in walk-trot by a 10-year-old. I don’t want to talk about it.

Coach Husband thinks the problem was showing a new-to-me horse for the first time. He has a point. He usually does. With the inexplicable exception of Previous Horse [Defense], I have always taken a while to adjust to a different horse [Report, Sorta]. My record is seven years with Opinionated Jumper Mare [Jump Crew].

Neither of these preclude my stick or dressage lesson arguments [Report I, above]. Why not both? I am vast, I contain a multitude of methods for getting in my own way.

Previous Photos
[2016] [2015]
List of posts [Perry GA]

Alvin in 2016
Photo by Doug Shiflet

Thank you for reading,
Katherine Walcott

Different Versions of the Same Thing

V is for Versions. If you are joining me from Blogging A To Z, welcome! Since the blog is already daily, with topics for each day [About: Schedule], there is no specific A To Z theme. I may even skip a few letters. Gasp. Clutch the pearls. The goal for this year is less crazy, more visiting. [Ze State of Ze Blog 2014]

~~~

Saddle Seat Wednesday

Holding four reins
Photo by Courtney Huguley

I am now riding with a double bridle. Gulp.

In dressage, graduating to a double bridle is a big deal. It is a point of endless discussion, mostly about the dangers and about criticism of folks who have done so without proper skills.

For example, a quote from Dressage Today, emphasis mine:

“Are You Ready for a Double Bridle?”
by Ana Gilmour

“However, using a double bridle too soon can result in anxiety in the horse, mouth problems and irreparable damage.”
Dressage Today
Mar 6, 2017

This puts a certain wariness in one’s head about having two bits in a horse’s mouth.

In saddle seat, 10 year olds ride with a double bridle. Allow me to repeat that. Munchkins who are learning to show walk-trot are doing so with a double bridle. Minus the vanishingly small exception of a few young horse classes, if the rider is in a suit, they are using a double. Performance = 2 bits.

I’m not against it. It works for them. The situation is the same as dressage getting its knickers in a twist about tempi changes whereas hunters install lead changes as soon as possible. Different disciples, different goals.

Granted, I did use a double bridle with George in the sidesaddle class at the Washington International Horse Show. But a) George was made of cast iron. Nothing was going to hurt him. & B) I never actually touched the reins.

It has been decreed that I will learn to ride saddle seat with a double bridle. The horses are fine with it. I can’t look at the curb rein without thinking about irreparable damage.

Thank you for reading,
Katherine Walcott

Mr. Whizbang is not objecting to the double. He is objecting to being surrounded by fools, his normal state.
Photo by Courtney Huguley

Too much shade, but a cuter Mr. Whizbang.
Photo by Courtney Huguley

New Equipment: Stirrups Up

U is for Up. If you are joining me from Blogging A To Z, welcome! Since the blog is already daily, with topics for each day [About: Schedule], there is no specific A To Z theme. I may even skip a few letters. Gasp. Clutch the pearls. The goal for this year is less crazy, more visiting. [Ze State of Ze Blog 2014]

~~~

Jumping Stirrups!

I raised my stirrups!

Wintec saddles [Equipment] come with their own style of stirrup leathers. Therefore, I had to buy a shorter ones rather than adjusting the ones I had.

I haven’t had that much of my lower leg on a horse since Previous Horse. (I pass quickly over the handful of jumps I did with Roscoe, Rodney’s initial name [Square One].) Saddle seat is all about the thigh and the knee. Occasionally, I have to use my calf when a horse needs extra motivation *cough*Sam*cough*, but the ideal saddle seat equitation position is one’s lower legs out to the side like pontoons on a seaplane.

We inch inexorably forward.

Thank you for reading,
Katherine Walcott

Que Pasa?

Driving Thursday

Q is for Que Pasa. If you are joining me from Blogging A To Z, welcome! Since the blog is already daily, with topics for each day [About: Schedule], there is no specific A To Z theme. I may even skip a few letters. Gasp. Clutch the pearls. The goal for this year is less crazy, more visiting. [Ze State of Ze Blog 2014]

~~~
Warning: more whining. Mostly because I can’t think of anything else to go with Q. The photo from the show has not arrived to be used for Driving Thursday & Quite The Dude.

I’m having trouble shaking off my poor performance at the show earlier this month [Report]. It’s not that I placed badly. I hope I’m more evolved than that. (Oh, I wouldn’t rule out going behind the barn and kicking the wall a few times.) It’s that I rode so badly. Not only that, but I worked really hard in the weeks before the show to be that bad on the day. I just don’t know what I’m doing out there.

Plus, I was miserable most of the weekend: tears, insomnia, stomach aches. The nerves trifecta. I’m reaching the level of Why am I doing this to myself. To be clear, the nerves still aren’t following me into the ring. So there’s that. While I did ride and drive defensively, I was not the hot mess I am before I get on.

Yes, Rodney is starting to go better. Will it ever be enough to make up for the enormous amount of time I have wasted to date?

My point? No point. I will get over myself, probably sooner rather than later. Onwards!

Thank you for reading,
Katherine Walcott

This Is Why I Am Paranoid Around The Barn

Saddle Seat Wednesday

P is for a healthy concern for safety, not an obsession, not at all. If you are joining me from Blogging A To Z, welcome! Since the blog is already daily, with topics for each day [About: Schedule], there is no specific A To Z theme. I may even skip a few letters. Gasp. Clutch the pearls. The goal for this year is less crazy, more visiting. [Ze State of Ze Blog 2014]
~~~

A while back, I was at Stepping Stone, getting ready for my lesson. The grooming stall is full of SSF brushes and material, so I leave my brush box just outside, in the aisle. (Yes, I bring my own brushes. Your point?) As I was about to reach down to get a brush, I saw a horse being led up the aisle.

From an excess of caution, I stood up & stepped back, waiting for the horse pass by. As he got level with me, the horse suddenly kicked out with both hind feet. I was looking at the bottom of a set of hooves from about a foot away. At least, it felt like 12 inches. Probably was more. I was perfectly safe where I was.

What if I had been a step closer, bent over? Shudder.

Thank you for reading,
Katherine Walcott

Letter Art: Wallpapering with Light

The Immersion Room at the Cooper Hewitt Design Museum has the neatest interactive table. Although the word “interactive” gets tossed about, this one really is. You use a stylus to draw on a screen. The result is displayed as a repeating pattern on the walls. Too cool.

Since my life is a blog post, I asked my friends to design Rodney’s Saga wallpaper. Voila!

Letter design & photography courtesy of the A Squad.

 

List of NYC Posts

nyc-2016-immersion-room-pose-1
~~~
No SketchBox lettering for April. It was pencils, which I have always hated for their messiness and impermanence. I tried, but not even the pretty colors and fancy holder could not overcome my loathing. The other item was a self-filling sepia pen that I could never get to work. #artfail

March: [Watercolor]
~~~
Lettering 2017

[Winter Tournament Letters]
[Watercolor]
[Daylight Savings]
[Connect The Dots]
[Pen & Pastels]
[NYC 2016]

Previous Lettering
[2016] [2015] [2014] [2013]

Thank you for reading,
Katherine Walcott

Show Report: Driving at ProAm 2017, or Showing Without My Security Blanket II

Driving Thursday

Pro-Am Benefit Classic Horse Show of Georgia
April 5-8, 2017
Georgia National Fairgrounds & Agricenter
Perry, GA, USA

120 Academy Showmanship Driving, 1st of 2
121 Academy Reinsmanship Driving, 2nd of 2
Both classes with HB Whizbang (Snippy. Or Mr. Snippy, we think he may prefer a more formal mode of address. Or perhaps even Mr. Whizbang. But I digress.) Thank you to the Alvis family.

As we came into the first class, I thought Snippy was looking around. He was. He wanted to make sure everyone saw his mighty marvelousness. We had a nice extended trot but not the dirt-flying, power-skids-in-the-corner trot that I was looking for.

In the second class, the competition had a better round &/or we had a little less energy that led to a little more wiggle.

Good drives, but not bulletproof.

As Sam is my security blanket under saddle [Report I], so Alvin is with the cart [Show Report, Photo]. Pro-Am last year was some of the best driving I have done [Team Awesome]. The thought bubble over Alvin’s head is so easy to read. Mainly he’s checking to see how much the rider or driver can handle [Report: Second Class]. If he is convinced you are ready, then it’s Luke in the X-wing saying, “Hang on back there.” I have not yet found those dials with Mr. Whizbang.

And yes, I was concerned – say 10% – that stomping too hard on the gas pedal would stir up the misbehaviors of our last lesson [Lots]. So, I was fractionally defensive, but not as bad as in my riding classes. Who woulda thought that one day I’d have a better time driving than riding?

Pro-Am links [list]

Thank you for reading,
Katherine Walcott