I’d like to get right to the jumping part of day 2, mainly because the flat work was similar and Eli seemed to remember and understand everything from the day before. The clinician focused on the junior I was paired with because she had not ridden the day before. I did not mind one bit! I don’t think I could have done quite that much cantering again the very next day.
Eli approached Sunday with more focus than he had on Saturday so we were able to make a little more progress over fences. Which is to say, make more progress in between the fences. Having a more rideable horse also helped!
Again, we started simple and worked over a cross rail, eventually adding an outside line.
The junior and I both had at least one similar issue: our horses tend to get downhill in the corners. The clinician emphasized pushing them uphill, not pulling. Seat, not hand. This is good advice.
After jumping, our session was not over. Did you notice Eli doing something a little unusual for him (meaning me, really)? We worked on schooling lead changes next.
I don’t really school changes. But nothing the clinician was saying was foreign to me. I have just never been the go-to lead change person, considering most of the horses that I have ever ridden ever had auto, easy, or uncomplicated changes. But Kathleen walked us through it and tolerated my slow wit when it comes to following instructions, and we actually got a few changes! It was a struggle, but Eli can do them. Now we just need to work on me. And my timing. And my position.
I really got a lot out of the clinic and so much of it is stuff I can apply right away and keep practicing. I probably won’t be trying to school lead changes daily, but as far as riding uphill, adjusting gaits with my seat, and using square turns for balance … that is all possible to incorporate into my rides. And I will try cantering more. It’s the most important gait for jumping, after all, so I should be practicing at the canter on the flat as much as at the trot, if not more.