From the expert himself, and famed curmudgeon: George Morris.
In his article from 2006, he discusses a lack of horsemanship in today’s riders. The article really resonated with me, because, chiefly, I am guilty of these things! I love showing, love winning ribbons, and wish I had more ‘guts’ as a rider.
I still do things like gallop my pony in the field, jump ditches, go up and down hills, ride in the outdoor arena when other riders refuse to (I do put front shoes on my pony when we transition to the outdoor because he is tenderfooted) and I take risks.
Not that many. I hate trail riding in our area because it scares the bejeezus out of me. I’m afraid of getting hit by a bus or motorcycle, of which there are tons and tons. The roads are too busy and too frightening.
Yesterday, I went to the outdoor and messed around with the little teeny tiny baby fences set up. We cantered them, trotted them, angled them, cut in and out of lines and generally did…Whatever we pleased!
I had a BLAST! I felt so free! Even though the fences were beyond small, it was just the most engaging feeling to do whatever I wanted. I do the ‘discipline’ work of dressage on Tuesdays, but i also feel like the ‘me time’ of weekend rides and Wednesday rides are necessary. It’s not a ridiculous free for all, trust me, but we just kind of messed around and I didn’t feel worried, or anxious, or anything.
It’s a nice feeling, ahhh…
It’s not perfect- the issues with his right lead (collapsing, falling in and struggling to maintain it) reared their ugly heads AGAIN telling me he is having a hard time with the footing and needs his shoes on- stat.
But, I didn’t let that derail our ride, we just moved on and I didn’t make a big deal of it. We enjoyed our small fences and i focused on finding my distances, and pace and sort of straightness.
It was nice to experiment a bit, without fear.