As a child I watched others riding at a local country club and wished and hoped and prayed that I could join them some day. It took a while, but I finally made my dream come true at the age of 21! I found a trail riding stable and made myself a regular for about 6 months. Guessing that there must be more to this riding thing, I decided to take some lessons. Another 6 months went by and I started to look for my first horse to buy...because, after all, I was an expert by now, right? Ha, ha...my first horse was the best horse ever but he certainly knew much more than I did! What a saint!
I went on to learn how to really ride as the years went by. I hooked up with a crazy jumping teacher, got a new horse and entered the world of Fox Hunting and Hunter Paces. I had a blast!
But I still searched for more knowledge.
Over the years I have studied, attended many seminars and clinics and have come the conclusion that it takes more than a lifetime to learn enough to be a good horseman/woman. I have come to realize that these gentle creatures are very "deep" and they deserve so much understanding from us humans. I have made it my life's work to teach people about fairness, and empathy when dealing with horses.
Now, almost 30 years later, I own a 40 acre farm in Upper New York State and I teach riding to other budding super stars! I go by a lot of Sally Swift's teaching of Centered Riding. A series of back and shoulder injuries (not horse related, thank goodness) have led me to crave more education on the use of body as it applies to riding. Biomechanics of both human and horse are discussed here daily. It takes a lot to do it all right to make our horses happy and comfortable (us too)...and a happy and comfortable horse is a safer horse to ride.
I love my life....horses are my life! God bless the horses!
Do you have any pets?
I have two dogs and a cat to keep my 15 horses company!
We [my attorney and I] need national help from potential bitless competitors and bitless manufacturers.
USEF refused to hold a hearing with me in May of this year on allowing bitless bridles in recognized competitions. This was a scheduled hearing....so you see they have a big problem.
Now I am taking appropriate legal action and need notarized affidavits from individuals who desire to compete bitless. My rule change had been specific to allow 'all' bitless bridles so as not to exclude any design.
1. We need signed notarized affidavits from individuals who wish to compete in USEF sanctioned competitions stating they wish to compete bitless for the health and welfare of their horses and cannot do so because of the failure of USEF to change the rules in an appropriate manner.
2. Also it woud be very valuable if makers of bitless bridles [no matter the design] would send notarized affidavits stating that their business is negatively impacted by the refusal of USEF to allow open bitless competitors.
3. Also it would be very valuable if trainers who use bitless bridles [no matter the design] would send notarized affidavits stating that their business is negatively impacted by the refusal of USEF to allow open bitless competitors.
The complaint we will be filing will directly affect national and international competitions.
My attorney needs these affidavits and I am asking for donations to be paid directly to my attorney to help with the fees.
In order for this to proceed pursuant to my attorney's request, all affidavits and attorney fee donations will have come through me to my attorney. If individuals contact me directly I will give them the required information they need to fulfill the requirements.
Any help you could provide in this endeavor for the health and welfare of the competitive horse would be highly appreciated.
Hi Susan--I tried to e-mail but it didn't go through. I'll keep an eye out for her. I have been riding, around once a week on average during the winter. We had spring last week, up in the 70's, but now its in the 40s and due to freeze tonight.
Yes I have been riding, puttering around the ring. I think that I am finally getting my position right, feet, legs, seat, body, arms and hands. Next is work at the canter, then, maybe oh maybe, a little jump or so.
I like TB's too, after the Arabs they are my favorite breed. Of course the TB's have better movement for hunt seat riding than the Arabs. I am so glad you like the ones in your barn. Heart, intelligence, stamina, jumping ability and speed, what more could one want?
Hot and humid, and it is effecting my MS pretty bad, I had to quit rasping Mia's toes, keeping contact at the trot, and I am down mostly to doing the 3 speeds of the walk. Sunday, one mare I ride told me that my hands were no longer fit to keep contact with the bit--time for bitless. The other mare (different bit) lets me keep contact only at a walk, for short stretches, and not at all at the trot (she inverts, Arab, you know.) I LOVE the walk, I consider it the mother of all the gaits. True, it is a bit more challenging to get good impulsion and movement. Luckily my riding teacher is used to me now, though I am sure she gets bored just seeing me walk around!
So long as we are polite and respectful we have delightful discussions here on Barnmice. We most certainly do not all agree on anything. As you may have noticed, a lot of my blogs are about riding forward seat. NO ONE else rides forward seat here, or so it seems. I know my blogs get read, but I do not get a lot of comments on them so I do not know what a lot of the readers think about them. But you could offer so much here--we just had a good, long discussion on riding bitless. So I hope to here from you more, after all you are one of my first friends on Barnmice!
Take care. Jackie
Its gotten real hot and humid here. I hope your weather is better! My last ride was pretty good. I am trying to fuse an occult spavin on an Arab mare in her twenties, and Wednesday she finally gave me a moderately strong trot! My teacher and I have been trying to get her sound enough to do the beginner's classes (walk & trot) for my teacher's summer camp. I hope she does well, as I have been working on her for 11 months (just a half hour a week). I just figured, who better than a disabled person to identify with and help a disabled horse.
Its gotten so hot that I have to use a bitless bridle now because of the tremor in my hand getting worse. So I will be experimenting all summer.
Take care. I hope your wonderful horses are doing well too.
You have hit on alot about the abuse that horses endure. Even if I had the energy to go to shows, I do not think I would much, because alot of the "top" winning riders do abuse their horses and I absolutely hate seeing it.
I am trying to gently bring attention to some of the worst abuses through some of my blog posts. If all the top riders ride badly and abusively, and that is all people see, it becomes the norm--I think most riders do not realize how far behind the bit they are, because that is all that they see everyone else do.
Take care, and tell all your wonderful horses hi from me.