Friday, June 27, 2014

Peaches - training project

Sorry about the lack of posting recently, I get so busy with life sometimes I run out of time to sit down and write out a blog post.
This post is going to be about the horse I'm training. Her name is Peaches and she is a 15.2hh chestnut Thoroughbred mare.

Her owner saved her just before she was about to be 'fed' to the hounds. Peaches was skin and bone and just finished racing. Her owner has had her for about 1 year and spent most of that time rehabilitating her and getting the weight back on and started basic training. She is such a sweet mare but really tense when ridden and still green.

Getting a pulse treatment

In the first few rides I was focusing on getting her to be comfortable with a long rein, she is used to having a firm contact so I had to train that out of her.
Now we have been doing a lot of flat work, getting her working nicely and forward and we have also started a bit of jumping.
She loves jumping and gets a bit excited as you can see in the video below.

Peaches is an awesome horse and she progresses every time I ride her. I can't wait to see how things work out with her.

Here is the link to the first time I jumped her.
Click this

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Weekend away

I have 10 days off working owing to me for the month of June. I recently used some of those days to go visit a friend. I stayed with her for 4 days.

We had the most amazing time. It was so nice to just get away from home and work and everything that's been going on and just enjoy myself. 
I won't write about all of the things we did because it would take way too long. But a lot of what we did involved her horses. 

One thing we did do was to ride her horses through the main center of Cambridge, (the SMALL city I was staying at). Her horses are completely traffic proof and it was so fun. 

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We started off by riding down to the bottle store and getting us a few drinks.....
Then we rode down the main road and went to the park where we practiced a few mounted games passes with our bottles and then we rode home. It was a really long but super fun ride, and we had countless people stop to take photos of us.

I had such a great time away. My friend Kimmy is my best mate and I love her to pieces.

My horses were looked after pretty well with my little sister in charge of feeding out hay and hard-feed (grain etc), and taking covers on and off. Thanks lil sis

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Melody and Romeo

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Bad fall

I had a bad fall with Romeo yesterday. We were out hacking on the farm and there are a few fences on the farm that we can easily jump instead of having to get off and open the gate. They aren't wire fences like your typical hunting fences, but wooden planked fences. Basically its just like jumping a cross country jump. This one particular fence that we had the accident on happened to have a gate beside it - no big deal. We had jumped this fence a few times, and as I was jumping over it for the final time to head home it went wrong, we were heading in slightly too fast, I tried to slow down slightly which was a bad thing to do in that situation because it messed up Romeo's striding. He was too close to pick up his feet and make it over the fence but he was also going too fast to stop. So he did the only possible thing he could think of and that was to turn. However because of the momentum and the gate right next to us we ended up crashing into the gate and somehow Romeo half jumped half fell/rolled over the jump landing on his side on the other side of the gate.
I was extremely lucky he didn't land on top of me. Of course being me I didn't think twice about jumping up and giving Romeo a full check over before considering my injuries. We were both fine just shaken. Romeo was perfectly fine and I hopped back on and jumped the fence a couple of times before heading home.
I have a very sore shoulder/neck/back but I'm sure it will come right in awhile.
We are both really lucky and I'm glad it wasn't any worse.

Pony Post - Romeo

Although Romeo is technically a horse I still call him a pony :P

Romeo is truly a great horse. When I brought him I wanted to compete in show-jumping. I brought him because he was a great horse to ride and he had an amazing jumping technique, and a lot of potential.
The start of the first show-jumping season with him didn't quite go to plan, we had a few bad competitions and a mix up with the registration. After that I decided to just focus on games for the season and Romeo got a bit of down time.
Romeo is such a sweetie, so friendly and affectionate.
He really taught me a lot since I've had him, I've really changed as a rider. Romeo is very sensitive to every little move you make on him - which meant I had to really focus on being quiet and still, and know that everything I did was a cue for him.
 I love this horse to bits and I can't wait for the coming season!!
At the moment we are going out for heaps of hacks on the farm and having a good old gallop :)

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Sunday, May 11, 2014

New oppurtunity

I still have one more pony post to write up which I promise I will do I just wanted to share this.
I put some photos on Facebook of me jumping Poppy bareback and bridleless. A lady I know that owns horses around this area messaged me and we got to talking. I told her that I wanted to get my name out a little and start training other peoples horses casually.

This lady (lets call her K) said she would love her horse to be trained bareback and bridleless but she has no idea how or how to start. It was organized that I would train her horse to do it and also to do some jumping with her. I was offered to be paid - but because I haven't been training for very long time I declined and said I just wanted to get more experience with other horses. K said she would pay me anyway when I was finished but we will see about that. I am going to have my first ride on her horse late this afternoon.

This is such a big thing for me, I have had a lot of people put me down and say I'll never make it anywhere in the horse world. I tried not to let it get to me but it seems the more I do the more people judge and criticize. Its hard to stay above that sometimes, but sometimes you just have to rise above it and all you need is a few people that do believe in you to get you started.......

Ill keep you posted :)

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Pony post - Poppy

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Bareback and bridleless. 

Poppy is my one in a million pony. I have owned her for 7 years now and I could never sell her.
I have such a great bond with her. As you can see above I have trained her to be ridding bareback and bridle-less with just a rope around her neck.She also knows tricks liking giving kisses, bowing, doing the Spanish walk, rearing (with and without a rider) and the latest one is smiling :). I will do a post of all her tricks one day. I have a long list of tricks that I am going to be teaching her in the future ....

The last two seasons I have been competing her in mounted games. It was fun!! but I miss jumping her. In New Zealand the age for show-jumping on ponies is 17 which means I can no longer do show-jumping with her. Instead I have decided to start training her for eventing and maybe at the end of the season we can do a few small events.

Poppy is a Standardbred. She doesn't act like one at all, but as a result whenever I take her out everyone automatically judges. "what in the world are you competing a standardbred here for". It really frustrates me when people judge horses based on their breeding. But EVERY single time without fail, the people that judged us to begin with turn around at the end of the day and say "actually, she's pretty awesome".

Poppy is definitely a girls horse, and she's definitely my pony. What I mean by that is she doesn't respond as well to other riders as she does for me or my sister for example. I have had other people try to compete her but they just couldn't get her going very well. But then as soon as I get on her she goes 100% better. We have such a strong bond and I love this pony more than words could ever express. 

Monday, May 5, 2014

Pony post - Melody

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Melody has come so far in such a short time. When I got her she didn't know anything - she had been sat on a few times bareback but not properly broken in. As a foal she was very spoilt and as a result she had no manners. She would try biting when I was putting her cover on or when teaching her to accept the girth. I had to be careful around her back end because she would occasionally kick me without warning, not hard but playfully and she would give a cute little squeal when she did. Of course it wasn't cute at all and she soon learnt that it was not acceptable behaviour. We also had a lot of problems with accepting of the bridle. When I started her ridden training she had a bad bucking habit.

But in the 7 months I've had her she has turned into the awesomest little pony ever. She will ALWAYS run over to meet me at the gate. She loves any form of human interaction. Her ground manners has improved in a big way. She the coolest pony to ride. I rarely have to use the reins when I ride her because as a mounted games pony I have trained her to stop and turn 99% off my body.
I've also taught her to jump small jumps and logs which so far she has taken all in her stride. The more I rode her the less she bucked and she doesn't buck at all now. Also in the 7 months I've had her she has been to 5 shows. Four of them were mounted games shows. The first two we just walked or trotted all the games and as the next competitions came around we were cantering or even getting up a slow gallop.
The other show I took her too was a schooling show. There were about 14 other horses in the ring with us and she behaved amazingly for a pony of her experience.

At the moment she is being turned out for a 2 month break. She is getting kinda bored just sitting in the paddock - she is missing being ridden! But asides from the occasional grooming and changing her rugs everyday she is just chilling in the paddock being a horse.

I can't wait for the next season with her. We will start off with some winter competitions and I will start pushing her a bit more and being a bit more competitive in the competitions. So watch this space!!