Monday, December 14, 2009

The Adventure Continues..........D Day Arrives.......

The Adventure Begins

Schooling my horse three times a day at the US National All Arabian Horse Show was making my horse better with his issues in the ring. And I guess you could say we were making progress in that aisle way as well. My horse was still reacting to any little thing but he was containing his reaction to a more suitable response. There was still plenty of twitching but not nearly as many episodes of jumping right through the bridle.

The only real problem I could see was my horse was getting pretty tired. I was worried I was right on the edge of pushing my horse too far.....and I'd have no horse left for my class. I decided Tuesday morning, the day of the section cut for my class, to just ride Legs in the early morning......unless, of course, that ride didn't go well and I had something major to fix. Then and only then would I school my horse at the lunch break.

Since I was riding in section A, we would be the first class of the afternoon session. I wanted my horse to have a longer break from the schooling session to our "real" ride so maybe he'd refresh just a bit. That would also relieve some of the stress associated with cramming schooling and getting the horse show groomed into that short amount of time. The last thing I needed at this point was my horse to pick up any stress from me.

There was that other issue with Legs as well..........the chiropractor. While I hadn't been able to even tell that first day things got weird whether my horse was still sore or not, it became clear by the next day the horse was definitely having more issues with soreness. The horse definitely needed to be worked on by the chiropractor again.

That next session with the chiropractor revealed the initial issue had indeed been masking more problems. The horse had several ribs that were out and increasing soreness in his back and both shoulders. The pain from these things certainly hadn't helped our schooling sessions. Pain can produce trolls where there normally would be none.

The second session with the chiropractor led to a third. The horse was getting better but all of the extra schooling was definitely contributing to more soreness than would usually occur. I was hoping the additional acupuncture would help relieve some of that and make working more comfortable for my horse. Anything I could do to help quiet those trolls, I was definitely doing.

That early morning call of the alarm clock on Tuesday morning was not welcome. My brain just did not want to engage enough even to find the phone to turn the darn thing off. It seemed like forever before I could get my heavy eyelids to open. Once that happened, I did manage to get myself out of bed and up to the barn..

When I entered Legs' stall, the horse just looked at me like I was kidding. He was in no hurry to cooperate with me stripping off his clothes and he reluctantly followed me into the ready room. That deep sigh of his was getting to be a regular occurrence in the saddling process. I sure wished he get things figured out and give me one of those sighs up at the arena.

It was a busy morning in the Ford Truck Arena. I recognized a lot of the trainers riding horses that would be in my class. There were 39 horses entered in the program. This morning it looked like at least half of those horses were getting their "real" schooling session........but not Legs.

I just wanted a nice quiet ride. I still had no big goals.........just quiet. I wasn't going to look for any kind of drape in the reins. The horse just wasn't there yet. The plan was to ride the horse I had.........and the schooling session reflected that.

I actually think the horse was more comfortable with all those other western horses out there. Even if they weren't necessarily heading the same direction or doing the same least they were rated pretty much the same. There didn't seem to be many english horses and only a sprinkling of hunter horses, we could pick a spot and pretty much stay with it despite the number of horses in the ring.

We did our usual flexing and bending. I tried to work off the rail a bit so I could push the horse laterally in the corners. Legs did pretty much everything I asked but I could still feel that tension that had been there for days. Still, the horse did what I I kept the session brief and then we headed back to the stalls. Considering where we'd been four days ago, I thought we were doing pretty darn good. I was confident I could get the horse through the class without a major long as no REAL trolls showed up.

Once back at the stalls, Jesse's group was working on getting their horses ready to school. Jesse had two riders in my class. One would ride in the first section with me. The other would ride in section B. Watching them scurry around getting ready, I was sure I'd done the right thing getting Legs schooled early. Then giving the horse time to relax before he needed to be groomed up to show.

Once the horse was back in his stall having breakfast, I set off for the arena to get my own. Once there I even watched a few classes, relaxing for the first real time since I'd arrived. I was definitely working on C A L M........something that had been in short supply my first trip to nationals those 14 years ago.

To be continued..............

The Warm-Up

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1 comment:

  1. Sounds like you've got a good plan going...C A L M, deep cleansing breath, calm...
    That's a good way to get an upper edge on the rest of the class.