Sunday, July 29, 2012


So Bootcamp went VERY! well. I got to ride five horses a day for three days. And I got a lesson on India and Roubles each day and then mini lessons on all the other horses. First I rode Roubles, then India, Revelle, Sage, and ended on Eclipse.
The best way to describe Roubles is a dragon. He's 16.3 hands and he's not a small 16.3 hands he's big and masculine. And he has an attitude as big as him, and did I mention he's six? But when you get yourself right and him right he's so much fun to ride! My rides on him were a little hairy because I wasn't psychically strong enough to keep him together like David does. However I will become strong enough to ride him it will just take a lot of practice so that when he pulls one of his stunts my body wont collapse. But anyways I got on him to learn about finessing my flying change aid, because I was all over the place and on him if you don't stay straight with your body and plugged in and working like a dog there ain't no way in hell that horse is gonna change his damn legs. So after many failed attempts at changes I finally figured out that the change happens on the exhale.
But before you ask for a flying change first you have to learn "H or Die" which is you pick a letter and you either reach that letter on the other lead or you die... and by die I mean the horse is halted and you start over. The next thing was straightness. I learned this trip that I ride every single horse like a banana, so getting myself "on" enough to get them straight was really hard and it took a lot of brain space, but I think I've pretty much got the idea now.
Now back to the exhale, what I was doing at first was trying to change the bend and kind of flail around to get the change but David taught me that its like you collect and hold your breath before the change and then when you want the change you think change and only move your seatbones and exhale. The exhale relaxs you just enough to allow the change to happen.

India also learned about changes with David! She did her six clean changes with David riding. But the exciting part was that he only asked for six changes period, so all of her changes were clean!! I wish so bad that I had thought about taking a video...

Now I have to get better with changes....


buckpony said...

Thank you for sharing your videos. You are doing an awesome job!!

I have so much trouble staying organized and quiet on my pony. My legs, seat and hands are no longer independent of each other, nor do they want to work together when I need them to. Hopefully if I can continue riding and if we can work out our saddle woes, I will continue to get stronger and will be able to be effective once again. It is really frustrating! :) Getting my body position correct while out of shape is really hard, too....bleck!

I love to watch you ride! You and Indie are such a lovely pair! Keep up all of that hard work - it is paying off! Can't wait to see even more videos!

Merideth said...

thank you!! i would consider taking some lessons with a mary wanless instructor they solely work on body position and strength. Its helped me a lot!

buckpony said...

I have a ride planned with one of my best friends on Aug. 18. Lida went over to England while we were in college and earned her British Riding Instructor certification or something similar. She is an incredible dressage rider and has been as long as I've known her. We PCed together and she has continued to ride on a regular basis all of these years. She doesn't have any children yet, so she has a little bit of spare time that I don't have. :) Anyway, I am hoping to have a mini lesson from her on the 18th. I'm not familiar with Mary Wanless, but I will google her! :) Lida and I both rode and worked for Judy Pirtle back in the early 1990's, and Lida continues to ride with Judy today. I'll let you know how it goes! :)

Thanks for the encouragement - I've never been a stellar rider, but now I really feel awful in the saddle! Like you, I rode almost every day, rain or shine and many different horses, all the way through college. Once I got married and had children, I tried to give it up, but just couldn't. It is certainly an addiction! After 17 years of hardly riding, it is fun getting back on, but frustrating all at the same time. We have tiny improvements as we go along though...maybe there is hope? :)