How I ended up on the ground in a dressage lesson 

Not gonna lie, I was getting desperate for a dressage lesson. It’s been a few months, and the last one we had was SO BAD (yes, horse, let’s pretend like you’ve never heard of contact before in your life), I’m not even sure it counts. So I was bound and determined to get one in this weekend, and wasn’t even deterred by the fact that the only time Trainer really had available was 3pm on Sunday.

Spoiler alert: this was a mistake.

I think I let myself be lulled into thinking it really wasn’t all that hot anymore, since this past week we’d had a good 10 degree drop in temperatures. What I failed to consider is that it was still in the low 90’s. With 70% humidity. And you know who’s not really acclimated to the heat anymore, since we ride so early in the morning? Me and Henry both.

I got there early so I’d have ample time to walk around the XC field and get some stretchy trot before our lesson started. Whatever was in the air yesterday was bothering us both, because we were both sounding a little bit wheezy. I’d given Henry a double dose of his allergy med before we left, but that didn’t really seem to help. Once I got him thinking forward I decided to just walk and wait for our lesson time. But we were still dying so the walking quickly morphed into standing under the trees while sweat poured freely down my face.

Trainer showed up and we got right to work, fixing our crookedness to the left (my bad), working on some sitting trot and 10m circles and shoulder-in. All was fine at first. Then we got to the canter and were doing a shallow counter canter loop down one long side, lengthen down the other side, and repeat. That was all fine (you know, when I let go and use my leg so the horse can actually move his hind end), so we took a walk break.


As soon as we stopped working, my world start spinning and I wasn’t sure if I was going to pass out or throw up. I quickly slid off my horse and sat in the shade for a few minutes, head bent over. Trainer kept handing me more water bottles (please don’t die in the dressage court) and eventually I figured I felt as good as I was possibly going to feel, so I hopped back up so we could do the exercise to the left. We did it 3 times that way and finally got a proper counter canter loop, so we called it a day and I promptly went back to collapse in the shade. I loosened Henry’s girth and undid his nosebands and we both just looked at each other like “This was an idiotic idea”. The glare I got from him was well-deserved. Sorry, bud.

a preview of next weekends torture

I think it’s safe to say that we’re done with afternoon lessons until like… October.

19 thoughts on “How I ended up on the ground in a dressage lesson 

    1. It always comes out of nowhere for me! Fine and then dead, with little warning. Trainer berated me a bit for not eating beforehand., maybe it would help if I remembered that part.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. all your trainers should berate you, Amanda 🙂 . Bottom line. But yes eating would help. And the thing is that that wooziness does SNEAK up on you when you least expect it. scary.


  1. i actually came here to see how in the hell Henry dumped you in a dressage lesson. Little did i know it was cause you wimped out in the heat 🙂 HA. Glad trainer was there to save your ass per normal! PS it was 59 degrees yesterday a.m. in New Hampshire 🙂


  2. Ugh ugh ugh I hate that feeling so much. I nearly passed out in a jumping lesson a few weeks ago. Glad you’re okay – heat exhaustion is scary stuff.


  3. ugh sorry girl 😦 i HATE that feeling of being suddenly wiped out. sometimes low blood pressure moments will hit and i try to be really sensitive to pre-hydrating, and also having something sugary on hand to eat if push comes to shove (juices tend to be ideal, but honestly just about anything, even peppermints, will do for me). bleh. extreme heat is the worst tho.


  4. Ughh that is the worst. I had a jump lesson at 9 and I was looked at my trainer after about 25 mins and was like “can we stop there?” I also felt the overheating coming on. I hear it’s supposed to be cooler this week though- fingers crossed


  5. Yeah I’ve developed a routine of stuff to do because I would get heat exhaustion by 10 am. Just….no. So I bring fruit and mix Gatorade with water – maybe that’d help? I know the bit of sugar and electrolytes helps to boost me, otherwise I feel like I’ll pass out and everything’s dizzy…. Ugh, it sucks. I am sorry that happened. Heat is seriously the worst but at least your lesson seemed to go well…?


  6. I totally did this once…but it was more embarrassing because I was in NC trying out a horse for sale and passed out after I got off. :/ Apparently food and water helps combat heat fatigue…go figure. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

      1. NO, but I ALMOST did. I was apparently delusional afterwards and thought I wanted her. After a few days of reflection I was glad she was in another state and it was taking time to arrange transport. 😉

        Liked by 1 person

        1. omg i was thinking this very thing. I would almost pass out then think it was a SIGN and buy the damn horse 😉 LOLLOL SO FUNNY! (Sorry to be enjoying your discomfort in the heat this way:) HA HA


          1. It’s ok, it was a few years back and I totally see the humor in it now. 😉 She was not a $4500 horse and only had one speed. She was with a barrel trainer if that tells you what the speed was hahaha

            Liked by 2 people

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