Do you know what the significance of today is? I didn’t until I logged onto my WordPress blog page. It is the one year anniversary of Ike’s Centerline Adventures! How far we have come since we started chronically our exploits. I looked through my photos from this time last year to see if I had a similar one to the one above that I took last week. As you can see, Ike is sporting a decent winter coat this winter and is beginning to fill out. Below is the closest I could find for comparison.
Poor boy didn’t have any winter coat last year…I think he is starting to lose his baby face and gain more of a topline. He has grown two inches at the withers and is now just a hair shy of 17 hands. I know for a fact that he is heavier. I know this because it hurts a lot more when his hoof and my foot try to occupy the same place on the ground at the same time. My toes and my Mountain Horse Winter Riding Boots don’t stand a chance against Bigfoot with his steel shoe. You can clearly see the shoe imprint on my boot. Luckily, you can not see that same mark on my foot.
After some late season winter weather and work kept me out of the saddle for 3 days, Ike and I finally got back to work with our lesson yesterday. Ms. C continues to school us in the basics because that is what we need right now. Our throughness is questionable some days, non-existent on others, and fleeting at best. I’m getting better at getting Ike to where he needs to be, but I still have miles to go.
I saw a quote on Facebook on My Virtual Eventing Coach’s page the other day that I really liked and sadly, it describes me to a tee, “Keep your hands forward thinking at all times, don’t be ‘stealing’ from the hind legs.” Yes, I’m a thief. If I am constantly pulling backwards or overbending Ike’s neck in one direction thanks to my “grabby” left hand, then he will never be able to truly push from behind and stay straight. Most of our lesson was spent getting Ike through and connected at the walk and trot. We had to do it at a slower rhythm to help Ike understand, and once we achieve it, we asked for more gas. But wait Alison, don’t throw him away just because you are going more forward! Oh, yeah, squeeze those fingers, engage that core, pull your shoulders back and show Ike the way.
Ride every stride. I should adopt that as my new mantra during yoga rather than om. I might actually remember it!
Entries are sent for our first two shows of the year. A new year is getting ready to unfold. Stick around for year two of our adventures.