Fun stuff!

Yesterday we rode to music! Leah started working with another student on a show piece, so she had the boom box out in the arena and was playing some new-age, sorta Lord of the Rings type music. As soon as Mo heard it, he started trotting away — or as soon as I heard it, I felt happy and started telling him to trot without realizing what I was doing. “This is great!” I said. “OK!” said Leah, “Then we’ll ride to music!” Using her best Socratic method, she then asked me what I thought the benefits of riding to music might be. The main one I could think of is that it would relax me-the-rider, which it does indeed. Not only that but with the right kinds of music, you feel like you’re in a movie! And when a “canter” tune comes on, it’s very dramatic and all of a sudden you’re out there saving Ireland or Scotland or Middle Earth or something, surging ahead on your noble steed at the head of an invincible army or you’re delivering the message that will save the good people of Rivendell (or Union Center, Ohio) from a fate worse than death — heroic, know what I mean? Plus I got so into it that I think I was doing a bit better of a job of asking Mo to do stuff. By the end of the lesson, I don’t know what we were doing exactly other than some fantastic collected little trot that neither he nor I normally do. Leah says he never got that far in his training. Does that mean I was *training* him to do something in spite of myself? But oh riding him to music was that kid-thing,  where you get all wrapped up in what you are pretending and you’re having fun pretending stuff!

Meanwhile, Gabby’s got a new official name: Avalon’s Fallen Angel. Isn’t that great? I burst out laughing when I saw the name on the white-board at the barn (something about vet certificates for an upcoming show) because it was just so darned appropriate. Gabby was born of excellent stock and valued at thousands of dollars, but she was moved about the country like a large and expensive piece of black walnut furniture that no one knew what to do with, like a wardrobe or an ice chest or a wooden commode chair that has to be made into something else since we now have built-in closets, refrigerators and indoor plumbing. She refused to jump despite extensive and special training, wound up at a teaching facility and then got sold to me, me who had some idea I could handle owning a 16 hand TB. She got sick, she pulled out of it, and now everyone loves her. I was so happy for her great new name that I made sure to give her some treats and rub her pretty, pretty head. The Angel Gabriel — a messenger from God who might have passed on to her earthly reward were it not for the efforts of many people and the plunging into debt of me with that horrendous vet bill. Ooof.

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3 Comments

Filed under Gabby, Just happy, Learning, Riding Skills

3 responses to “Fun stuff!

  1. Erica

    We ride to music all the time at my barn. My instructor choreographs freestyles for dressage competitors, so she’s really into it. Music has many benefits, the main one being helping both the rider and horse to relax. But it also helps you maintain an even cadence in your horse’s gait so he’s not speeding up and slowing down all the time. And as you noticed, you do it without consciously thinking about it — the best way! Singing is good too. When I get on my young horse, I either sing or laugh — it helps me relax and forces me to breathe! Music has much power!

  2. I started singing today, Erica, to try and relax while Mo went at one of his fast trots. Didn’t work for me all that well since I sped up the folksong to match him rather than using the song to gain control of us both:

    “Oh I wish IwasinLondonorsomeotherseaporttown!
    I’d put my feetonasteamtrampandgothewholeworldround!!

  3. music is cool. At the Arab shows we usually have music in the ring for our classes. It’s interesting how the right music can make a beautiful class and the wrong music can make one fall apart.

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