Doesn't sound like much. A little ground work, saddling, and finally leg over and up. As I settled my fanny down lightly on the saddle she gave me some serious flattened mare ears. I kept the reins slack, tension (as best I could) out of my body, exhaled slowly, and patted her neck, and rump. Her ears perked back forward, and I lifted the reins. No further drama ensued, and we we just did laps of the oval pen I have set-up with steel panels, practicing give and release with the rein, relaxing and getting the head down, softly stopping, and backing up. All went well. Phebes had her first hour under saddle in over two years.
I didn't remember Phebes feeling so BIG underneath me. I swear she is fully fifteen hands, which means she would have grown another inch since I laid her off work. What did seem to come back to me quite naturally was "the fear." Not the overwhelming, sweaty kind of fear, more an intelligent fear, that I was throwing my leg over a horse that hasn't seen work in a very long time. Phebes is just so incredibly powerful and has the fastest reaction time of any horse I've personally dealt with. Crap might happen. She also is sensitive and intelligent. We will get there. Journey was looking very perplexed and dare I say she acted like she wanted to go for a spin?
Discipline: LD/Endurance, CMO, Trail Rider, Cartoonist, Writer, Co-Director/ Green Bean Endurance
Favorite Links for training, gear, and memberships!
- National Association of Competitive Mounted Orienteering
- HOW TO CMO
- What is CMO?
- Old Dominion Endurance Rides
- Renegade Hoof Boots
- Riding vs. Racing a discussion with the Duck.
- Trumbull Mountain's INTRO TO ENDURANCE RIDING
- Principles of Conditioning
- Conditioning the endurance horse by SERA
- Short Article: Feeding & Training the Endurance Horse
- Feeding the Endurance Horse, Swedish Author
- Preventing Dehydration In the Endurance Horse, Ontario Competitive Trail Riding Association
- Jim Holland's fantastic training links here!
- South Eastern Distance Rider's Association