Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Big Horse, Tiny Human

Me, the midget, has yet again decided that the big horses are the better option for myself. Despite having the option to choose between a much smaller, more physically suitable mount, I decided that Beorn, 17hands of pacing, sweaty beast, was exactly what I wanted to ride. He was the one from the flatwork ride that wasn't the easiest to canter. What fun.

So I guess the big question here is "Why?" Not gonna lie, I did sense some hesitation from the other teammates; Brittany was adamant about switching horses with me if I didn't feel comfortable, and rightfully so. I picked Beorn because he's a big horse with a big stride, but he's not straightforward. He's somewhere between Romeo and Abbey. I was fairly direct with Steph and told her that I might get nervous, and there was a 50/50 chance that I'd be able to canter him. I typically wing it in these situations, but I don't need another setback, and two less than stellar rides last week made me grossly determined to do better.

Beorn This Way
I did do better . . . well, after I actually got on the large animal because my legs were too short to reach my stirrups. When I did get on, and we started our warmup, it was a lot of giraffe at first. While my first reaction was to collapse forward, I took a deep breath, drew my shoulders back a bit, and tried to maintain a rhythm with him. Beorn is the biggest try hard out there. No, we didn't go in a nice frame the whole time around, but he's still so responsive and honest. I was shocked at how nice he felt, despite our obvious size difference. We did a group critique for the canter (and yes I did canter him without an drama). The biggest concern was me letting go and letting him move like a big horse. So, we did that in the second part of the lesson.

And he got even better. On the bit and tracking up, I seriously hope he looked as good as he felt. I was still getting used to the bigger stride, so it was difficult to get him to bend well, but that'll improve with time.

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