Thursday, 13 August 2015

#TBT: Leaving Room For Interpretation

Oh look, its thursday!  Time to dive back into prehistory again.

One of my favorite sayings is "What I said and what you heard weren't the same thing".  This proves true repeatedly when you start learning to ride ... scratch that ... during your entire riding education. Its understandable when you think about it.

A rider is trying to coordinate their limbs (all 4 of them) and balance on a moving surface, while coordinating the horse's limbs, and trying to hear what their coach's instruction over their own struggle to breathe at the same time.   It might be easier to juggle pitchforks and flaming torches while reciting Shakespeare, on a surfboard.  So, a little mis-interpretation at the time is understandable.
Friggin' Amateur
Just a sidenote, but I refuse to adapt to this 'trainer' shenanigans.  If you pay the person to educate your horse, they are a trainer.  If you pay them to educate you, they are a coach.  If their primary job is to teach you, they are not a trainer, unless you are a seal...  Unless you happen to be a competitive horse riding seal, at which point, carry on! (And send video, I'm begging you, because I need to see this) Rant over and back to your regularly scheduled T-Rex

The truly epic incidents tend to happen when your coach isn't there, you're riding independently and have had time to process.

One of these incidents was back when I had my first pony, the aforementioned 'perfect pony'. There were two instructions at work that day.

  1. If she does 'x', use your stick
  2. When you can't stop, point them at the wall.  Then they'll stop.

You might be able to guess where some of this is going... stay with me.

Pony does 'x', I use stick.  I don't remember what 'x' was. I do remember the acceleration underneath me, vividly. Pony shoots forward like the proverbial scalded cat.

Not good, need brakes.

No brakes.

Pony is galloping off with me indignantly, as she has taken great affront. So, I point her at the nearest piece of the fence line of the outdoor ring while riding in the (ever so classical and elegant) water skiing position.

Did you know that 'wall' and 'arena perimeter fence' don't mean the same thing to a pissed off pony mare?
I mean, I still don't but then?  Wow.

Because I sure did when I felt her front feet lift off the ground to clear the arena fence line, which happened to be between 4' and 4'6" high. To this day, I still don't remember why I used my stick. I sure as hell remember picking myself up off the ground on the wrong side of the fence line uncertain how I got there, with my pony standing beside me inquisitively.

The main difference? Mine jumped the whole damn fence, and I was a kid.
And to this day, I haven't used a fence line as an emergency stop, which brings me to my next favorite saying.

Pain teaches ;)

Again and again ... and again

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