A small hurdle, hurdled.
January 5, 2011 4 Comments
Tonight I flat out felt like hell in the saddle. I’ve been working out, trying to un-do the fitness collapse my two weeks off and a bout of the flu brought. Today, despite the fact I had a lesson, I did an awful cardio-step workout that kills my legs. Tonight was no exception. My muscles were tired and sore.
I mounted up and we got to work – but immediately, Christy spotted something weird. I was curling my leg back, towards Maddie’s flank, as we trotted around in two point, warming up. She alerted me to the problem, and I tried to fix it, but it wasn’t happening. I started to post, and that didn’t help either.
We dropped to a walk, and I kicked free of the stirrups and let my legs hang a minute, then started rotating my ankles and stretching. Ahh. That felt good. After a few minutes, I put my feet back in the stirrups, and Christy gave her seal of approval. Off we went again.
For about 15 seconds.
Clearly, things weren’t working for me tonight. I started curling my leg again, and things still felt awful. I dropped the stirrups again.
And then, because one of my resolutions is to just shut up and ride, I said to Christy, “Hey, I want to try something.” I nudged Mads into a trot. While I was too busy staying focused on the horse, I think I did hear Christy’s jaw audibly drop and hit the ground. She’s been trying to get me to drop the stirrups for, oh, months …. maybe even years. Mads has a trot I can ride without stirrups. I never contemplated dropping the stirrups on Jag, who had a trot that felt like a pogo stick, it was so bouncy.
Granted, we weren’t doing much of a trot. But we did four or five little shuffle-y circles around Christy, and called it a night.
I really want to ride more and better without stirrups. It’s the only way to develop a truly independent seat. And it’s sound practice and makes one a safer rider. In particular, I’d like to be able to drop and pick up my stirrups – or adjust them when they slip – with ease. Tonight was the first step.
So it was kind of a stupid ride tonight, but in the end, I had an important win.
Tomorrow we’ll give another lesson a shot. I’m going to do some yoga and pilates, and gobble a couple Advil before heading to the barn. Hopefully I’ll put things together tomorrow night!