Social Distancing=Not Riding
It has been 10 days since I last rode a horse. I started the distancing sort of early, before the surrounding counties and the state (NC) closed down, since I had been compulsively reading about the spreading COVID-19 pandemic. Since I am in three risk groups I decided that it would be better for everyone if I just stayed away from the barns. Oh well.…Continue
Added by Jackie Cochran on March 28, 2020 at 1:47pm — No Comments
A Bigger Release
Amid all the depressing news going out nowadays I have found two bright spots.
First, Debbie and I went in together for a Guardian Horse Mask for Bingo http://www.guardianmask.com/, hopefully it will help Bingo with his moon-blindness. The company got it to me…Continue
Added by Jackie Cochran on March 14, 2020 at 11:55am — No Comments
Have I Found Another Solution?
Last night I was re-reading “Riding and Schooling Horses” by Harry D. Chamberlin who was a Brigadier General in the US Cavalry.
Since I have been having difficulties with keeping my right leg forward enough when in two-point I was re-reading Chapter I, “The Seat”. This time I was reading…Continue
Added by Jackie Cochran on March 7, 2020 at 2:21pm — No Comments
My Plans Go Awry
I approached Wednesday's lesson with great optimism. I had my double bridle all made up and I anticipated 30 minutes of just re-clarifying my aids, mainly reminding Bingo of what exactly my aid meant with me patiently waiting for positive results.
When I woke up it was FOGGY and the fog was thick but it was…Continue
Added by Jackie Cochran on February 29, 2020 at 11:01am — No Comments
Immediate Improvement with the Double Bridle
Lately I have been riding Bingo in the Fager Bianca double-jointed roller snaffle, with improvements with contact and responsiveness to most of my hand aids (turning was not perfect.) These improvements were so great that when I finally achieved Debbie's minimum requirement for riding in the double bridle (being able to get up into 2-point) she said…Continue
Added by Jackie Cochran on February 22, 2020 at 12:48pm — No Comments
Working on My Two-Point
This week I got to ride Bingo twice, and I hope I can ride Cider tomorrow.
I got my lesson on Wednesday on Bingo. It had rained a lot the first few days of the week and the ring was SLOPPY in spite of over 10 hours without rain. Debbie suggested going over to the other slightly drier ring, but since…Continue
Added by Jackie Cochran on February 15, 2020 at 10:48am — No Comments
A Pretty Good Week
I finally got to ride Cider again, it had been 6 weeks since my last ride on her.
Since I really wanted Cider's opinion on the Fager “Oscar” double-jointed “front lock” copper lozenge bar relief titanium snaffle, the one that Bingo did not seem to like too much, I was very happy. Shannon's grass ring was…Continue
Added by Jackie Cochran on February 8, 2020 at 10:55am — No Comments
First I Have to Recover my Strength
Last week the weather and my health did not cooperate at all as far as riding a horse was concerned.
When I saw Debbie on Wednesday for my lesson this week I told her that I wanted to get back into riding Bingo in the double bridle, and that I needed her opinion about how that horrible…Continue
Added by Jackie Cochran on February 1, 2020 at 11:24am — No Comments
As the winter goes along, we are reviewing all the basics. I firmly believe that this needs to be done over and over, and other professional instructors, some expounding on YouTube, others in writing, have offered firm support for this concept.
The principal is simple, the more one does something, the smoother and better one becomes at it. In the case of horse training, the basics are fundamental movements which, put together, allow for more complex, or difficult movements. In…Continue
Weather Changes Impact my Position
When I was able to celebrate the New Years by riding a horse I was hoping that this would precede a winter full of riding. Of course Nature did not agree with my hopes and dreams.
At least I've had a lesson every week.…Continue
A Tale of Two Bits
I had ordered three bar relief bits from Fager and they arrived a little over two weeks ago. Bingo had been sort of nice with the Lilly single-jointed bar relief bit and I wanted to see if he got better with the double-jointed bar relief bits. With the “Lilly” he was still opening his mouth some with my rein aids though otherwise he seemed more cheerful with it, but I wanted…Continue
Added by Jackie Cochran on January 4, 2020 at 3:00pm — No Comments
After Cider (and Bingo) gave me the “not interested at all” reaction to the Fager “Frida” three piece tongue relief snaffle I've gone back to the bar relief varieties of Fager bits. Since I knew that Bingo greatly preferred the single jointed “Lilly” bar relief bit I decided that it stays on his bridle for right now. I just get tired of having to switch a bit from one bridle…Continue
Added by Jackie Cochran on December 21, 2019 at 11:42am — No Comments
A Soggy Mess
Sunday was wonderful, nice and sunny. I got to ride Cider and I tried out the Fager “Frida” double-jointed tongue relief snaffle on her. Cider did not cuss me out, but she “told” me that she did not like this bit, her contact was not steady at all and she was harder to stop. I rode mostly on sagging reins and I practiced her turns using seat and leg aids and leaving the reins…Continue
Added by Jackie Cochran on December 14, 2019 at 11:03am — No Comments
Does Bingo Actually LIKE His New Bit?
I have spent this month experimenting with the Fager bits. On Cider I have been using the Fager “Lilly” single jointed bar relief bit with and actual improvement with contact. On Bingo I tried the Fager “Fanny” single jointed tongue relief bit (“uh, no, I don't think so”) and the Fager “Frida” double jointed tongue relief bit.…Continue
Added by Jackie Cochran on December 7, 2019 at 11:01am — No Comments
We finally achieved a short-term goal that I'd set, which is, to clear 4' (1.2m).
Early this year, I'd set that as a goal to work towards, because I firmly believe that one must always have a goal in everything, something to work towards. A goal gives one a reason to do things, to learn, to improve. Goals also measure milestones, points where one can look back and feel a sense of achievement.
I also believe one should have at least one…Continue
Riding Between the Showers
Wednesday morning was sort of dreary, passing showers left the ground damp and there was a breeze. Driving to the stable raindrops would start to fall, taper off, stop, and start up again. Since Wednesday was the only day I was guaranteed a ride we just drove on, maybe it would stop precipitating by the time Bingo was ready for riding.…Continue
Added by Jackie Cochran on November 30, 2019 at 1:42pm — No Comments
To determine if art enriches your life.
There have been several scientific studies on how art enriches our lives.
According to Professor Semir Zeki, neurobiologist at the University College of London, when you stare at great artworks, the part of your brain that is stimulated…Continue
Added by Linda Finstad on November 25, 2019 at 5:41pm — No Comments
Small Bit Guards are a Total Pain
And once I realized it life became much easier.
I have been using my new Fager titanium mouthed bits and I got interested in their bit guards. The promise was that they were easy to put on (and take off), and that promise was fulfilled beyond measure. Since I have cursed out bit guards more…Continue
Added by Jackie Cochran on November 23, 2019 at 12:47pm — No Comments
It Sure Feels Like Winter
Apparently it was the Siberian air mass visiting NC this week. It was cold, with a pretty brisk North wind and it just sucked the energy out of me.
Since Wednesday morning was too cold to ride I did not get my lesson until Friday. Friday morning I opened the front door to see what it felt like and I…Continue
Added by Jackie Cochran on November 16, 2019 at 11:01am — No Comments
I Try Out Two New Bits
After a week without riding I was sort of frustrated. I had two new bits that I was eager to try out on the horses. I really cannot complain too much if I can't ride because of rain, we have been getting dryer and dryer down here in NC. The ponds are shrinking and the creeks and river are low.
Added by Jackie Cochran on November 9, 2019 at 11:20am — No Comments