I had a lesson on Sunday with my good friend Diana who just started back riding again ( I am a bad influence I know!). We don’t get to lesson together ever so this worked out and the rain stayed away long enough.
I didn’t do a whole lot due to my hip issues (going to doctor today YAY). But Jenna had me try a neat exercise and holy cow it worked.
Some background. I hold onto the inside rein like I am holding onto to a lifeline off the Titanic. Except I never let go, unlike Rose!
By me pulling on the inside rein I give Remus something to lean on and therefore all hell breaks loose as he gets heavier and heavier and I just never ever let go. So Jenna was like how brave are you feeling (luckily we were in the small ring!)? I was like what do you want me to do? She took the reins and pulled them over Remus’s head and laid them to the outside of his neck. And then said hold them like western reins and let’s try a trot. At first I looked at her like she was nuts. Then I shrugged and went….okay. HA.
I failed big time not getting photos because I can’t find anywhere on google that shows this! But let’s just say imagine the reins laying on the outside of the neck then going to trot and then even canter. And your horse relaxes in his poll and trots and canters (well except for the muddy parts) better than ever. Hmmm. Also crazy how my childhood comes back (western pleasure as a teenager) riding one handed my other hand was totally by my side like I was riding western. Too funny how habits never die.
Jenna was saying, so what has changed? And I was like (duh) I am not holding onto his inside rein like a maniac? YES.
I do adore my horse because he can take a joke and we even did a halt from the trot that squared up perfectly with the reins on the outside. I really must pull on him poor guy. So if you ever have an issue with your inside rein (death grip) and want to try something new (and you freaking trust your horse of course), give it a whirl. I actually did the rest of the lesson like that. Go figure. It was fun and different and eye opening to say the least. I might even have jumped like that if my hip wasn’t bothering me!
What unorthodox ways of riding have you tried?? Anything that you want to share?