Sunday, 26 August 2012

Bits and Pieces.

I have just spent my Sunday morning doing horse chores. I cleaned both my and Natalie's saddles and bridles, trimmed both the horses and cleaned the float out.

I was going to ride but I never get time to do any of that stuff so I decided to give Allie a day off. I wondered - when do you guys clean your tack? How often do you clean it?

Yesterday Nat and I took the girls back up to Mulgoa for another trail ride. It was awesome. We had the girls charging up hills and having extended trotting sessions, with about 3 big gallops in there too. I finally was able to get Allie to understand what galloping actually is - I honestly think she just didn't realise she could make her legs go that quick!

Both the girls were super sound on the rocky, hilly, sandy terrain. When I say rocky, I mean quite rocky! No boots, just a bit of extra wall (they were both due for a trim). Love it when my barefoot ponies kick arse like that.


On my lunch break Thursday I drove to the saddlery and bought this book:

I took Allie to the indoor that night and we played around with a few of the warm up exercises. She particularly enjoyed this one:

The book says to do this one for 10 solid minutes in sitting trot! I did it for 5 minutes half sitting half rising. I concentrated on precise shapes and flexion. It was super fun.

The book is pretty good - just a bunch of different exercises for different things (warming up, looseness, lateral work etc etc). I'm excited to incorporate our favorite exercises into our regular schooling routine. I really want to get my head around shoulder-in. Any tips?


Funny story - Natalie took Gracie on a road ride around our home suburb with her friend on another pony. Apparently there was a little girl with her father watching the horses go past. Nat said "want to have a pat?" and the little girl said to her dad "I want to pat the dirty horse!" while pointing at Gracie. I loled when Nat told me - Gracie is quite a grub - she always rolls and ends up with mud chunks on her forehead.

My trimming is picking up - I have picked up so many clients recently that I am trimming most of the day every Saturday and almost every Sunday too. I can't wait for daylight savings so I can trim after work to free up my weekends a bit. I am loving it though. I am getting quicker and quicker every trim. I can easily trim 5 horses one after the other without a break. I have my website up and running, have a new logo and am waiting for my cards to be printed. I am booked in to start my diploma of podiotherapy next year -I start my first block in February. This really is turning into a career for me. I can't wait until I can do it more then just part time. :)

A recent trim.


Oh - best of all - it is spring next week. :)


Kelly said...

Good for you on your trimming business!

As far as cleaning tack, I try to clean my saddle and bridle every other ride and condition both once a week.

I have looked at the 101 Dressage Exercises book on line - will have to add that to my with list!

Dom said...

That is seriously the best book ever and I cannot find my copy and the bookstore didn't have it and *tears at hair*. Thanks for reminding me that I need to buy it.

Val said...

Five horses in a row? Wow. Please share your secret. I am not totally spent after trimming my own horse, but I am definitely not fast, even with the stand.

That book looks great. I like the needlepoint exercise a lot. I call the loopy parts "teardrops" and ride that shape frequently myself. They used to be part of First Level test 1.

I learned to ride shoulder-in by riding a 10 meter circle and then upon reaching the track, keeping the bend like I am going to start a new circle, but going straight down the rail for a few steps. Before the horse loses the bend I ride another 10 meter circle. You can continue up the rail this way, keeping everything very laid back and stress-free for the horse. Some horses learn it more easily in walk, some in trot. I have also tried it for a section of a large circle for horses that do not bend easily. Wiggle worms seem to learn it more quickly, although it can be easy to get too much neck with those types. Shoulder-in is one of my favorites. Can you tell?

Lisa said...

Wow, you clean then after every second ride? Makes me feel slack! I probably clean my tack about once every six weeks! Lol!

The book really is good, grab it if you see it!

Lisa said...

Thanks for the tips Val! I'll have a play around with it next ride. :)

As for my trimming secret - hoof stand, brand new sharp rasp (I have given up on trying to keep my rasp until it is really blunt to save money. As soon as I feel it get a little blunt after about 10 trims I replace it with a new one) along with my big man hands and arms (which I used to hate but now I realise why god gave them to me!).

K.K. said...

I am super lazy and our saddles get cleaned about once MAYBE twice a year. My Dressage saddle is a wintec, so it doesn't get cleaned much. But when I do clean our Western saddles, they get a pretty thorough cleaning job and I bring out the tooth brush to get all the nooks cleaned out. My bridles get cleaned/oiled when they look like they need it, usually a bit more often than my saddles.
and I have wanted that book for forever! I need to start reminding the hubby that my birthday is coming up... ;-)