Weekend recap: ch-ch-ch-changes

Change was the theme of the weekend. Most little, one kinda big. Let’s start small and build from there.

First – Henry got his mane done. I did it with the clipper blade method for the first time to help thin it a bit and it seemed to work better. Of course I totally forgot to take a picture of him post-makeover soooo here’s a picture of him eyeball deep in grass, pre-mane job, because his life is so hard.

nomgrass

Second – I changed his bit again. When I first got him I tried him in a Nathe but it didn’t really go that well. But he’s gotten a lot more responsive to seat and leg since winter, plus a lot more balanced, so I gave it another whirl. He definitely does not get behind the bit in it almost ever. On the flipside when I have to really sit and do a big whoa in a line I don’t have quite as much success. Then again the need for a big whoa is also almost never, and really if I was better with my body/seat it’d be a non-issue totally. For now I’m going to keep him in it and see how it goes.

My odd bridle collection
My odd bridle collection that is about to get even more odd

Side note: I noticed the past week that when Henry gets super sweaty and I get super sweaty, I’m not having as much grip on my reins as I used to. Not sure if the rubber is just getting worn down or what because I’ve never had this problem before. My gloves are still pretty pristine so I don’t think they’re the problem. Waiting to see how I feel about the calfskin reins that come with the PS bridle.

The big change was that Trainer wants me to try riding Henry a different way over fences. Basically he wants me to stay up out of the saddle and let him keep cantering more forward/open after the jump, and not sit again until we’re coming out of the corner toward the next jump. We tried it out a bit yesterday and while it’s always hard to make big changes (successfully) all at once, he did seem to go better with that ride. By nature he’s such a compressed little ball of a horse (basically the opposite of my last several horses) that opening him up gave him more lift in the shoulder and kept him more in front of my leg. Of course, now I’ve got to figure this all out on my end and get used to riding differently, but I think it’s a step in the right direction.

brownjump
why do they always look so much bigger when you’re cantering down to them than they do when you’re just standing there?

I also had yet another fun time with helmet makeovers, but we’ll talk about those tomorrow.

Until then, enjoy this shot from a pool party we went to on Saturday night. Yup, that’s a movie on a projector screen. Yup, those are glow sticks floating in the pool. Yup, those are also glow sticks around the rims of our cups of vodka/lemonade/punch mixture. Winning times three.

How pool parties are done
How pool parties are done

Thanks to everyone who has participated in the tack swap/sale so far! I have one more thing to toss into the pile – a size 54 brown Tekna Pressure-Eze girth. If you’re interested let me know and I’ll get pictures to you.

10 thoughts on “Weekend recap: ch-ch-ch-changes

  1. Epic pool party is epic. That’s an interesting change in riding, but it makes a lot of sense when you explain it. Bring out the best in Henry one lesson at a time 🙂

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    1. He’s a weird creature. I think that ride helps me too, because I tend to take away too much pace from him, and he really needs a little bit more for things to work right. I just have to totally retrain myself.

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  2. Epic pool party had a great film choice–love that silly movie. I am dying to see the PS bridle in action! & now also to see how it goes with the different ride you’re working on.

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  3. Just reading the title I thought you meant lead changes…
    I’m in the same spot now, learning to stay forward after a jump instead of cruising around on my bottom. Not in xc or I might die, but still, it is really hard to get rid of a habit like that. Luckily I ride a ton of different horses – everything from 14.1hh QHs to 16.2hh dressage warmbloods – so I don’t get too used to one way of riding.
    Isn’t it terrible how jumps look HUGE when you ride them and then when you want to brag they’re basically ground poles?? Still, impressive oxer! Nice!

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