Monday, 25 May 2015

Schooling Show, AKA wherein I revisit mistakes I haven't fixed

This past Saturday I competed in my second schooling show of the year. I felt quite relaxed about it going in because it was being held at the barn I take lessons at, so no 'new venue jitters' to worry out!

I had been riding consistently at home, but while my jumping practice was going well, I had not managed to get the nerve to raise the jumps past little cross rails in my backyard arena.

I had bravely entered all the jumping classes. All of them. Luckily the organiser stopped at 2'3".  The classes began at cross rail Hunter, and then alternated between Hunter and Jumper classes as the course height increased.

Super cute cheering crew entertaining themselves at the show

We did a warm up/lesson over cross rails with our coach and I seemed to be doing alright for the most part. Then coach raised the rails from cross rail to a straight 2'0" and I lost my mind. I was a bit surprised by just how scared I was. I actually could not feel my legs once it was my turn and we barely made it over the first two jumps. Miss Tea needs/demands I ride after the jump or she bucks/flails/stops hard a few strides after the jump (isn't that just freaking weird?!) so with my jello legs, that is what she did. Twice. The third try I managed to get leg on and direct her and make a very ugly go of it.

At that moment I was really wishing I had a school horse that would tote me around the course while I sat there like the untrained monkey I was riding like.

My first two classes were cross rails Hunter and then Jumper. We did very well and Miss Tea felt nice and relaxed at that point which was my only goal really at that point. Then 2' which was alright, but not great. I was overdoing the whole "let's be relaxed" thing and she actually hit a few of the jumps.

And then 2'3" happened. I did it without jello legs and got some of our correct leads even and I was very happy with just getting it done, regardless of how messy it looked.

2'3" - just too ugly for video so here is a frame grab
This show just highlighted my same issue that I have been struggling with -- cantering a course is hard for me and Miss Tea. Seriously, how do you all do it? So I can live in the land of trotting cross rails for ever more, or get some big girl panties on and get to work. I hate not making progress, so big girl panties it is!

Next show is two weeks away so I better get cantering...:)