Apr 5, 2009

Spring Training

I'll get the yucky stuff out of the way first. Looking out the window I see a few of my least favorite things: snow, mud and wind. And don’t think you can’t see wind! I see it all right when it is blowing the snow across the yard and the tree branches are swaying with their early spring buds. I see it in the manes and tails of the horses as they dash from the barn, jockeying for the best spot at the round bale against those 40 mph gusts. It’s been over 24 hours of constant blowing. It’s revelry against the window panes is enough to drive anyone mad. End of rant.

On Tuesday, I stopped by Brenda Messick's to see how she was doing with Windy. This is the second spring I have taken Windy to Messick Quarter Horses for 30 days riding. Ideally, I would continue to take lessons after her refresher course, but we soon find ourselves in the heart of trail riding season and not enough hours in the day or days in the week.

Nonetheless, I enjoy watching someone else ride my horse; especially someone who rides so well! Windy was definitely in work mode and Brenda was taking her through the paces. Of course when it was my turn to ride her, I felt like I hadn’t been on a horse in my life! “Bend your arms”, “Collect her”, “Lift the inside rein”, “Move off the outside leg”, “Squeeze with your calves”, “Bump, bump, bump!”

Have you ever driven a skid loader? When you drive a skid loader, you use both your arms and feet simultaneously to make the skid loader go forward and backwards and your timing needs to be impeccable as far as lifting and dumping the bucket. After you do it for awhile, you get the hang of it, even though in the learning curve, it may cost you a few chunks out of the side of the barn or manure blown in your face! But as you progress, you no longer think about what your hands or feet are doing; you just do it. That’s how Brenda rides Windy. She knows when to press what buttons and how to press them to get the results she is looking for. It’s amazing to watch such precision and timing and seriously, I doubt I will ever have that much finesse.

Windy comes home next week and I am sure once she leaves the arena and we start hitting the trails, some of my old habits will prevail. But just the same, after she has spent time with Brenda, I have more horse than I had when she left and I mean that in a good way. And I have to try a little harder to live up to my horse’s expectations!

1 comment:

  1. Great analogy, now when I ride, I can pretend I'm driving a skid loader! I've never done that before. LOL!!


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