Practice braids. My first ever. Meh.

With the show just days away, I still have a lot to do.   And I got a rude awakening last night when Christy reminded me that USDF rules apply to this show – meaning jackets, braids, the whole kit and caboodle.   Crap! Braids!  I was planning on rocking a nicely pulled mane.  So tonight I experimented, and came up with something that will look OK and won’t require me to learn how to sew in button braids, yet.  Some additional practice is needed, however.

In addition to the braids, we also had a long list of things to address in the lesson, chief among them the free walk and downward transitions.  We made some progress in the free walk – if I get really active and push with my seat, I can get Derby to stretch and swing.  A bit.  This is very much a work in progress.

Our trot work is almost pretty.

Downward transitions went better.  Christy had me work on getting Derby more in front of my leg by having me trot, walk one step and then immediately trot again.  This forced me to use my half halt and within a minute he was working very nicely – his back was up, his hind engaged and we had good contact.  When we added the halt through a medium walk we had our best executions of this movement to date.  Not perfect, but markedly better.

Our trot work was better too.  Christy worked with me on being more assertive (and nagging less) and we had a more forward, quality trot tonight.    So, progress.

In other news, the mosquitoes are close to plague levels.  The nights are lovely and cool, but the horses are being pestered by ravening hordes of evil airborne bloodsuckers.  Because it’s cooled off, I hauled out Jag’s old fly sheet and boots, and I festooned Derby in protective gear.   It looks goofy, but while the others run and roll, he stands quietly. As long as it stays cool, I’ll keep him decked out in his bug suit.

I think he looks kind of cute. In a pathetic and dorky way.


About Sarah Skerik
Sarah Skerik is an experienced digital business executive and strategist with a long track record of success in team leadership, employee development, marketing and business development.

5 Responses to Cramming

  1. OMG I love his suit of armor!! Hey, whatever works.
    Good luck at the show! What kind of braids are those? I think you did a fine job – I’d love to learn a braiding technique that’s a bit simpler but still looks presentable.

  2. Sarah Skerik says:

    Thanks, Sarah! The braids are modified button braids, done with elastics only. Those toward the bottom of his neck looked OK, those toward the top stood up too much. I’ll post a how-to once I figure out how to get them to all lay flat.

  3. Dorky, yes, cute=DEFINITELY!!! Hope the plague ends soon and good luck at the show!

  4. Brittany says:

    Hey Sarah!

    You and Derby look fantastic! Are you going to the Paddock Hills show on Sunday? I would love to come out and cheer you on and offer braiding help if needed, though your braids look really good for your first time. I haven’t met the famous Derby yet, and I would absolutely love to!

  5. Sarah Skerik says:

    Hi Britt – yes, it’s Paddock Hills. Would LOVE to see you! Ride times are 9:10 and 9:35. No need to get up at the crack of dawn to come braid – I think I have this one handled. Just sent you an email. ❤

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