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Horse mirroring his trainer at Pippsway Horse Connection Clinic Pippsway Classical Natural Horsemanship Wellington Somerset near Devon

I’ve been riding Bronson for a month or so now and Pip was hosting one of her Horse Connection Clinics. Having the opportunity to have 2 lessons a day over the weekend and observe and learn from the lessons of others is such a great way to take leaps and bounds in our horsemanship that I signed up straight away!

As I said in my last post, I’ve been much more on the ball when I’m in Bronson’s presence to ensure that I am not inadvertently being submissive. What came to light during one of my lessons however was that I am not making sure I am always in control when I am riding, if I want my horse to listen to me then that cannot be the case! Being in control when we are riding means that every step our horse takes needs to be one that we have asked for, at the speed and in the direction that we have asked. As soon as our horse does something we haven’t asked for we need to respond immediately. If we want our horse to listen to us any of the time then we need to make sure he is listening all of the time.

Pip had set up an obstacle course in the school and we were working our way around barrels and cones and over poles shifting our weight in our seat to turn. Bronson responded really well to direction but we were struggling with speed. He was working with very low energy and then when I asked for more in walk he would break into a jog. As he is very bouncy and I had no stirrups this was not ideal! It was great practise riding without stirrups and I was able to sit much deeper in the saddle so I will be doing more of that in my lessons to help me improve my seat. But mostly it was a great lesson to highlight that if I want to be in control any of the time then I have to be in control all of the time! I cannot pick and choose when I want to be in control!

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