There are two parts to this seminar – the rope work which turned out to be about the mental side of us handling the rope as well as understanding and re-programming our physical reactions to an upset horse. And we have a meditation on what’s in the way of us doing what’s most important to us. Expectations of excellence / perfection vs enjoyment and all the nuances of that. Some VERY interesting discussion that I look forward to more of in the forum as everyone’s ahhaa moments slide quietly or leap in with a bang. Enjoy!
Have your lead rope with you for this seminar.
Anna-Karin’s Soga and Liam – bless them look at that gorgeous energy.
Anna-Karin and I had an exchange of emails around the way Liam is holding the rope. It’s carefully folded so there’s no loops to grab around his little fingers – because Anna-Karin and I both know people who have lost fingers to a looped rope, when the horse has pulled back suddenly and fiercely. It’s a shocking thing to happen and a brutal injury.
My passion with the little people is to teach them to have only one piece of rope in each hand, creating a safe habit for life no matter what horse they come across. That way we avoid circumstances where we take our eyes off them and they shift their hold or they don’t notice that they’ve looped instead of folded the rope. Sometimes they need a shorter rope so they aren’t dragging it or falling over it.
Anna -Karin also wondered if we could change our tendency to grab the rope and hold hard when something happens that makes the horse pulls back. Gosh there’s many elements to that, but yes it’s possible to change the neural pathways and we’ll have a bit of a feel around that this morning with the lead rope that I asked you to bring to the seminar.
(You may remember that it was Susan who did one of the riding seat lessons on last months seminar and her’s was about what changed in her body and took away from her beautiful riding seat as she picked up the reins.)
Hi Jenny, My brag, fresh from having read your email this morning.
I rode my beautiful Ignite for the first time in more than two months and it was heaven! Just to sit on her back…….aaah, (big sigh)
I’ve been practicing picking up the reins without tension in my fingers, hands, arms and body and keeping a soft seat in the chair. Then I took this new feeling along to my work in hand with her this week; we’ve only just started back in the arena after weeks of appalling weather. Today she felt soft and responsive and I had taken the bareback pad with me to try out (with the girth on the last holes as she’s like a balloon with the new green shoots!!). The ground work was amazing as I used my inner picture first and then a hint with my pelvis as a second cue if the IP didn’t work to get the forwardness and direction. So to sit on her and move forward without tension in my body and without brace from her was sensational. I will remain positive with this feeling and look forward to next time. It IS MOTIVATING.
Thank you for keeping us going Jenny!
Susan and Ignite.
From Julia over in Western Australia. Our topic this month reminded her of this.
This is a very important life lesson that a philosophy teacher taught his students.
The teacher cleared off his desk and placed on top of it a few items. One of the items was an empty mason jar. He proceeded to fill up the jar with golf balls until he could fit no more. He looked at the classroom and asked his students if they agree that the jar is full. Every student agreed that the jar was indeed full.
The teacher then picked up a box of small pebbles and poured them into the jar with the golf balls. The pebbles filled all of the openings in between the golf balls. He asked the students if the jar was full. Once again, they agreed.
Now the teacher picked up a bag of sand and poured it into the mason jar. The sand filled in all of the empty space left between the golf balls and pebbles. He asked the class again if the jar was full. The students agreed it was technically full.
Finally, the teacher pulled out two beers from under his desk and poured both of them into the jar filling the empty space between the sand. Now the students began to laugh wondering how far this was going.
The teacher waited until the laughter stopped. “I want you to recognize that this jar represents your life,” he started. “The golf balls represent the important things. Your family, children, health, friends, and passions. If everything else was lost and only they remained, your life would still be full.
The pebbles represent the other things in life that matter, such as your job, house and car. The sand—that is everything else. The small stuff. If you put the sand in first, there is no room for the pebbles or golf balls.
The same goes for life. If you spend all of your time and energy on the small stuff, you will never have room for the things that are most important. Pay attention to the important things in your life.
Enjoy time with family. Go to dinner with your spouse. Play games with your kids. There will ALWAYS be time to clean the house or take yourself shopping.
Take care of the golf balls first—the things that really matter. The rest is just sand. You are dismissed.”
Before the students left, one shouted out. “You never mentioned what the beer represents!”
The professor smiled and said, “Well I’m glad you asked. The beer just shows you that no matter how full your life may seem, there’s always room to have a beer with a friend.”
From Oriana whose Fred has had big trouble giving his feet.
I did have a small success. I asked Fred for a foot, he thought for a moment, and then gave it to me.
Since then it has been back to saying no, and leaning on the foot I want, just to emphasise the point.
So I have changed tack a bit.
The actual problem is getting him to lift a foot.
I started a training exercise to do just that ,using the special biscuits to make everything clearer.
WOW! What a change! But I never give treats……….!
I now have a willing partner, that is ever so quick to catch on, like there was never a problem.
I had to tie him up for a back foot, as he kept on backing away (trying to keep those biscuits in sight), for him to get the idea. Next time this was not needed. Not only that, but I could do the “difficult” back foot, too.
All of this is done in a halter, but not holding the lead rope.
After the first time, the next day I had Nuvem and Fred standing at the electric gate, looking expectantly at me. He wanted to do some more…………..I have NEVER had a horse do that before. Of course I obliged.
(Me: it’s funny that Oriana should describe this as a SMALL success, when I would describe it as transformative. 🙂 )