I recently joined a riding club, and their lessons are helpfully labeled by the topic of the lesson. So for my first lesson, I choose “Introduction to Stadium Jumping,” because it seemed like a safe option, while still maybe presenting a little challenge. I haven’t had a lesson for a while, but I can physically jump, even if it’s crummy, but, only in straight lines presented in a ridiculously easy pattern. Lots of turns will be a challenge!
It would also be challenging as Berry hasn’t been off the property yet this year. I assumed the field trip would get her very excited, which turned out to be accurate. She was very hyperactive when we first got there, and then after blowing off some steam, she was just active. I love it when she’s more forward though, controlling the energy is easier than trying to build up energy, in my opinion.
I had originally planned to bring my helmet cam and my SoloShot 3. Then, it ended up being a rainy, gross day, so I was wondering if the lesson would be canceled. But then I found out it’s in an indoor, which is awesome, but my SoloShot doesn’t work indoors. So I abandoned any hope of getting footage of myself riding. This is why I dressed like a frumpy lump, because if I think no one will see me, my outfit inspiration is potato. But then it turned out the club videos everyone’s ride (OMG free media to share!?) and now my outfit of the day is on display for everyone, because obviously if I have some kind of media, I’m going to post it.
The lesson started with a grid, starting with ground poles, and progressively turning into crossrails. Berry acted like she’s never seen such a ridiculous thing as a ground pole before, and proceeded to jump over the single pole at a walk. She didn’t have the energy to keep that up though, and she remembered quickly what a ground pole is.
It was a mostly uneventful lesson. I don’t feel like I learned a ton, but it was a refresher to get us started this year, and I did get asked to do turns that I don’t normally do, so that was a bit out of my comfort zone. It was nice to ask for them, and actually get them. Makes me feel good about what we’ve done in the past. She didn’t refuse any jumps or even look twice at the funky fill some of them had. It was fun to get out and move around again. I clearly need to continue working on my own position, but Berry is a joy to ride, and I really do love that mare. It feels like we’re an old married couple at this point. I’d like us to both keep growing and learning, which I don’t think is too much to ask. We both get better after every ride.
I was told to join the beginner novice/novice class next time, so I have that to look forward to. The class is titled, “Combinations.” Ooooo, this will be fun!