This past weekend Apple (Rue Pomme) and I showed in Conyers, GA at the Georgia International Horse Park... my hometown! The weekend was awesome! We met new friends, saw a good portion of my family, and rode some solid dressage tests.
Saturday's test was our best one to date... and we placed in the MIDDLE of the pack. Bummer. I was pretty disappointed that our "best" was merely average. That just won't do. So Sunday I sat a little taller, pushed a little harder, and we came home with a 3rd place out of ~20. Much better.
1) The level of horse at Regionals is going to be AMAZING. I can't wait to see horses and riders of that caliber... and I hope we are up there with them!
2) In training: The goal is to give your horse CONFIDENCE, instead of trying to control it. We want to SHINE as a team.
We had a "moment" Sunday morning where my nerves were electric, Apple was fiery.... I know, I know, "Your horse is a reflection of the rider." My nerves were transferring to Apple. I had most of my GA family coming to watch. This was Apple's first time in the covered arena, with bleachers, and chairs, and loud music.... AAAHHHHHAAAHHH!!!! My brain was on fire, and so was Apple's.
I had to make a decision that this is a training opportunity, we are here to learn, we are here to preform. We're going in that ring, I must ride well, give Apple the confidence that "we've got this!" Remember to breathe, sit up tall, and RIDE!
She was a little hesitant, never seeing any of this before. I rode "the trees" thank you Mark McCarter, and Clinton Anderson. Apple trusted me, and we danced!
Lots of lessons learned this weekend, the most important to me is CONFIDENCE. As a teacher, leader, we MUST have it... And SHARE it.
Here's a video of First Level test 3 --67%
Here's the Musical Freestyle -- 63% (Very low score, I forgot the left lead circle.)