Normally, most of us try to keep our personal lives separate from the blogging/horse world, but I personally believe they are one in the same. I know for myself at least, most of my decisions revolve around my horse and his welfare and our plans etc. I also have a S/O who is wonderfully involved in my life and curious about my horse endeavors. Numerous times he has come out to the barn on his own free will to photograph or video our rides, he's been to our first show and he always asks how my rides went or how Bacardi & Yankee are doing. Its incredibly refreshing and adorable and to know he will always be there willingly to support me.
While I find it sweet & adorable and fondly refer to him as The Boy, I think he wants to be depicted as a super strong, manly man. While this is incredibly accurate, I will always think of him as The Boy on this blog, but since he requested a name change I will gladly honor that request since he has spent many hours at the barn with me willingly.
Quick backstory on my S/O; all through high school AND college he triple lettered in Football, Wrestling and Track and made the All-American team in 2014 for College Wrestling. He also is an avid and competitive crossfitter and shares my passion for the sport.
|Newspaper clipping from his win|
Well. He has entertained the thought of riding a few times with me and proved to be a natural (of course) at it, in which I was blown away and pleased since I selfishly could then drag him along on rides and horse things without feeling horribly guilty.
|Riding sweet LillyBelle|
Yes, a knight. Who jousts. Its a real actual thing.
At first I wasn't sure what to think because even though I had seen it at Renaissance festivals, I thought it was just randoms dads who got bored and decided to showcase a dead sport.
Nope, its a thing.
There are World Championships and everything, and we happen to live 30 minutes from the man who IS the reigning Jousting World Champ and was the host for the show on TV, Full Metal Jousting.
I of course was giddy, knowing that my S/O might possibly learn Dressage if he wanted to go forward with Jousting training. Its hella expensive and requires a lot of time, obviously. This is where Shane looked at me and said "I need you to teach him how to ride. teach him Dressage" and then we discussed my past and Eventing and Dressage and it was intriguing.
There were two options, S/O work his ass off for 10 hours a day in exchange to learn the basics of riding from Shane on lesson at a time....or bribe me to teach him how to do more than putz around on a QH on the trail.
Um, obviously he chose me.
I was SO excited to get the chance to teach someone so important to me the basics of Dressage and how to gallop a horse etc.
The main issue was finding a horse for him. He's twice my size and in no way is Bacardi ready for beginners to be on his back, let alone someone his size. Sadly, perfect Miss Lilly sold and no longer is an option. Luckily, I have a few friends in the area and one of them just purchased a half-Belgian for her equally as green and large bodied S/O. She also is more than willing to let us use him for lessons! #winning
His name is Chewbacca and he's the cutest half-Belgian I've ever seen.
Our first real lesson into the emersion of Dressage was this weekend and I wanted to focus on learning the dressage seat and feeling the gaits and recognizing when to correct.
I will never be a real instructor since I have a difficult time breaking down the art of riding into understandable and smaller parts. I really want to nit-pick every little thing, like seat, hands, hips, knees, shoulders etc and I know thats completely overwhelming for a new rider.
I figured that hardest part for him will be opening his hips and not sitting in chair seat and its imperative for dressage (and jousting) to have a deep seat and long lines. We really focused on just feeling the walk, each footfall and how the hips move through the gait and relaxing those hips open and rounding around the horse instead of what most green riders do...chair seat, tip forward and flail.
S/O was a great study and after learning how to get a lazy butt horse to move, really settled into a longer frame and worked on stretching through his heels and keeping his body aligned.
Its a bit harder in a western saddle, but for now I want him in that to have that horn for balance and security. In time I know his hips will open up and getting that leg long will be easier.
I also briefly covered the function of posting vs sitting trot and how to do each. Then we dabbled in a little bit of trot (think one lap) work to begin to feel the movement. He did great but as all new riders, had some difficulty, thus the short spurts. I wanted him to focus on correctly riding instead of just flailing about until he got it. So the second his leg came up and he felt unbalanced we asked Chewy to walk.
It was a great lesson, and I hope I'm teaching the correct way. I really want him to be successful in this endeavor and I am so grateful to be a part of something so cool!
|Bangor: Destroyer of Worlds and his trusty steed Chewy|
Do any of you have S/O's or Hubbies that ride too or are at least interested in your horsey world? I hope so :D