Tuesday, 26 March 2013

Eventful week!

Well, it's been a pretty tense last week or so after coming home from a 'holi-moon' (my newly-minted mother-in-law's great name for the week my newly-minted husband and I spent in Tassie after we got married, with both our kids!) and finding my big Irish filly looking a little off. She just looked 'disconnected' behind, like her hindquarters had dislocated from the rest of her. Not that dramatic, just 'loose'! So, I got Robyn Larson-Shelton, bodyworker extraordinaire, out to check her our and, after a quiet ten minutes of walking around, standing up, walking some more, Robyn announced she was almost positive the filly had a fractured pelvis.

Bummer. What the hell does that mean?? It sounds pretty serious....I mean, a fractured pelvis is pretty serious in humans, right?? Yes, I'm told by the best vet in the land, Rochelle Joyce, but not THAT serious. The main issue is foaling (she's 5 months pregnant) but her young age and obvious lack of pain appear to be big ticks in her favour. She has no muscular atrophy on the damaged side, also a good sign.

After a week of misery locked in a yard, I go out to find both hind legs swollen. Hmmmm. I took her for a long walk, leading her off Assegai which they both liked. Swelling was gone in one leg and reduced significantly in the other. By the time I came out that evening, the swelling had returned. Hmmmmmm. Bugger it, I thought, I'll just put them both in the hospital paddock and they'll keep each other pretty calm. Ha!! Within 2 minutes, both idiots were galloping and cavorting around like yearlings. Bloody hell.

Luckily, a biscuit of hay goes a long, long way with my pigs of horses. :) No more idiotic cavorting. Just munching.

Assegai, after about a month of sporadic riding, is back in work (albeit in the bloody pre-dawn, pitch black, end-of-daylight-savings DARK). We've entered Intro at Albury in a couple of weeks and he'll get a clip between now and then. I'm trying to leave it as late as possible as he's just on the verge of being fluffy, but not yet fluffy enough.

Dressage is coming along pretty nicely. I'm doing a bit of jumping training tomorrow and might just squeeze in a lesson with Ben on the weekend. Haven't had a lesson in ages and I think it's starting to show!! Luckily, the Manuela Mclean clinic is coming up the week after Albury. Then the next big event isn't until Berrima in June, though I think Canberra might be running a hunter trials or something before then. If we go well at Albury I think I might aim for our first Prelim at Berrima. I walked a bit of the course there last weekend and it looked really lovely, perfect for a first Prelim run.

I'll keep you posted!

Friday, 15 March 2013

A big ole rut

Well, hi. It's been a while! Basically, I've barely been near a horse the last month, let alone riding and training 5 days a week! I've hit a big wall and am struggling to get over it.

It boils down to quite a loss of confidence that has crept up over a couple of months. The catalyst was a couple of lessons with a local coach, a person who doesn't go for a positive approach and basically left me feeling like a couldn't ride at all. It wasn't her fault, really, I just disagreed with her a lot and this inevitably resulted in me wondering if I was right or just adhering to 'tradition', 'ideas', 'approaches', 'methods' and all that crap that is unsupported by research or science.

A case in point. Andrew Hoy believes that one must not release with the hands over a jump as the jump is simply an 'elevated canter stride'. Why would you allow your hands forward when you are asking for a higher or collected canter, he asks. He teaches that the head and neck do not require rein to stretch out. This is clearly not supported by biomechanics, given a horse jumping a decent-sized jump is using his head and neck to a great degree for balance and to efficiently use his back, allowing his front legs and hindquarter to get out of the way of the jump, and the whole body position looks completely difference to an 'elevated canter stride'. Bizarre.

So, to be constantly arguing with someone that does this for a living is energy sapping. It doesn't really get anyone anywhere, and I started to wonder why I was paying this person money to just get told I'm wrong all the time. Fair enough.

Now I'm a bit lost, really. Lots of stuff going on in life and the horses just got pushed out. I was too tired from being up with the baby over night to get up at 6am in the dark to go riding. I know, what?? But I'm not even the first one out there most days!

I have Berrima next weekend and I'm wondering what the hell I'm thinking even still considering it. But I'm leaving it to the last minute just to see if I can pull a very large rabbit out of a very small hat.

Stay tuned!