Jackie Cochran's Blog (422)

The Final Cold Morning of the Season

The Final Cold Morning of the Season

This Wednesday morning it was quite crisp, 45°F with a brisk breeze at dawn and it did not warm up much in time for my lesson. I had to put my cold weather breeches back on and I could wear my BOT back brace without getting too hot. I even used my home-made bit warmer on the bits.…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on May 18, 2019 at 11:32am — No Comments

Is the Double Bridle EASIER for Horses to Understand?

Is the Double Bridle EASIER for Horses to Understand?

This week was the fourth time I used a double bridle on Bingo. I continue to be totally amazed how this horse who was VERY resistant to hand aids has settled down and is now showing definite signs of understanding my hand aids. Even though my curb rein is sagging enough so that I do not bring the curb chain into action, when I give hand aids…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on May 11, 2019 at 12:00pm — No Comments

I Rode Bingo Twice This Week

I Rode Bingo Twice This Week

This was a good week, I got to ride Bingo 30 minutes at a walk twice this week, once for my lesson and then I FINALLY got a “homework” ride in.

Wednesday I was so glad to see that clouds of hair did not come off Bingo when Debbie groomed him! He is still shedding, but a lot of his undercoat and…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on May 4, 2019 at 11:24am — No Comments

We Check Out the Weymouth Curb

We Check Out the Weymouth Curb

One of the advantages of the double bridle is the ability to communicate with the horse at a level of great subtlety. The bradoon give the snaffle effect or course, like the Weymouth curb gives the curb effect, and the subtleness of the double bridle comes from how the rider uses both bits in combination. For most purposes the individual bits are used to indicate…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on April 27, 2019 at 1:28pm — No Comments

I Introduce Bingo to the Double Bridle

I Introduce Bingo to the Double Bridle

My French-link Egg-butt Bradoon bits finally arrived on Monday. Yeah! I got out my cob size bradoon hanger, found my longest Micklem bit straps and my new reins. My Hinterland notched reins stayed on my Wellep double-jointed snaffle since I really did not expect for Debbie to tell me to go ahead and use my made-up double bridle, but I went ahead and put my…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on April 20, 2019 at 11:04am — No Comments

Bingo Slowly Improves

Bingo Slowly Improves

The shedding season is in full force and the bug season is just about to start down here. Bingo hair is all over my saddle pad, my girth, my riding clothes, and tracked into my mini-van and house, Bingo hair is taking over my universe (with some help from Cider.) You'd think after weeks of weekly thorough groomings that the quantity would decrease, that his coat would look…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on April 13, 2019 at 10:29am — 1 Comment

Learning How to Use My Upper Thigh

Learning How to Use My Upper Thigh

Several weeks ago I had run into a quote from Stephen Peters that said that the lower legs do the driving aids and that the thighs do the collecting aids. From what Debbie has told me about how she gives her halting aids I knew that Debbie had already figured this out long ago, even it she had not put the idea forth in a pithy statement. After discussing this…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on April 6, 2019 at 1:57pm — No Comments

Bingo's Selective Memory

Bingo's Selective Memory

Due to Debbie's endless list of tasks to get her stable ready for a show today I had to take my lesson on Thursday. I'm just glad that Debbie was able to fit me in!

When I got to the stable I noticed a sign in the wash stall, to NOT shed the horses out in the wash stall because all the hair had…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on March 30, 2019 at 10:56am — No Comments

Bingo's Vacation Ends

Bingo's Vacation Ends

Bingo had a 8 month long vacation with nobody riding him at all. He's been fed, his hooves trimmed, and blanketed when needed (he lives outside), more than enough time for his body to heal from any little undetectable injuries. Debbie had started grooming out his winter coat the week before my lesson, getting a lot of hair off outside the barn.…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on March 23, 2019 at 10:29am — No Comments

I Will Be Changing My Lesson Horse

I Will Be Changing My Lesson Horse

My lesson on Wednesday was the usual. Cinnabar, came in with his usual “you again” sour expression, he did not particularly enjoy the grooming (mostly Debbie), and the overall impression I got from him was that he thinks he is overworked and “underpaid” (he gets fed plenty and has lots of turn-out with his buddies.)…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on March 16, 2019 at 11:07am — No Comments

Riding in the Drizzle

Riding in the Drizzle

This week I had a choice, I could ride in the drizzle or take my lesson on frozen footing.

I decided that getting damp was better than risking a wrenched fetlock joint.

Sunday I was really hoping that the precipitation would hold off…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on March 9, 2019 at 1:44pm — No Comments

At Least I Had a Lesson This Week

At Least I Had a Lesson This Week

I only got to ride on Wednesday this week, at least I got a lesson in!

Cinnabar was my lesson horse again. It was so warm I did not have to use any of my butt blankets. I think I felt a lesser degree of the muscles in his butt moving smoothly because we did not have the BOT butt blanket on.…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on March 2, 2019 at 11:20am — No Comments

Another Week of Not Riding

Another Week of Not Riding

The weather has been most uncooperative! Last Sunday Shannon's grass ring was just too wet, even for just walking around.

Wednesday I nervously watched the weather radar before my lesson. It showed rain in several places but not over the stable. Debbie called, I told her this, and we agreed to try…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on February 23, 2019 at 2:00pm — No Comments

Two Creaky Old Ladies

Two Creaky Old Ladies

Yesterday I got to ride Mia. When I got to the stable the stable hands told me the Mia had hung around the barn UNTIL someone asked if I, Jackie, was coming. Mia immediately headed out to the furthest part of the pen she was in, out to the other side of the riding ring. Then they told me she had done the same thing earlier, hanging around the barn until someone mentions my…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on February 16, 2019 at 11:39am — 1 Comment

I Feel Secure While Trotting

I Feel Secure While Trotting

I know that this is an unusual new event for a rider with 45 years of riding. When I learned to post the trot at age 6 I had no problems and until my MS ruined my balance, proprioceptive sense, coordination, etc., I always felt secure trotting. However, for the last 5 years or so I started to feel like my breeches had a surface of slick glass as I started shifting…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on February 9, 2019 at 11:33am — No Comments

Some Added Security in the Saddle

Some Added Security in the Saddle

This week I tried something new.

Several weeks ago, on the COTH Forum, when I asked about hip protection, another rider recommended a new product, rubbery pads that self-stick onto the saddle.

Ever since I started riding…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on February 2, 2019 at 11:26am — No Comments

A Change Brings Me Back to Start

A Change Brings Me Back to Start

Debbie called me earlier in the week asking if I could postpone my lesson until 12:30 P.M. as she wanted to be with her grandson as he got ear-tubes Wednesday morning. Since it was going to be cold early in the day, and it was going to be even colder later in the week I agreed. We had never had a lesson where he had been turned out for hours previously so I was…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on January 26, 2019 at 11:19am — No Comments

Finally I am Riding Again

Finally I am Riding Again

And it is SO GOOD to get back into the saddle!

I have just been walking because I got so weak while my cracked ribs healed. My entire body has to be brought back “on line” so I can ride safely and without irritating the horses. Right now walking the horse is the best thing I can do to get my body…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on January 19, 2019 at 11:30am — No Comments

Dwyer on Curb Chains

Dwyer on Curb Chains

This is probably the last blog I write on Francis Dwyer's book, “On Seats and Saddles, Bits and Bitting,” since I am riding again (YEAH!!!). Since the curb bit, in the past, was named after the curb chain, I will give you what Dwyer wrote about the curb chain so that there are seven blogs I've written about this book. I am sorry if there is some repetition from previous…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on January 12, 2019 at 10:12am — No Comments

Dwyer on Curb Bits, Part III

Dwyer on Curb Bits—Part III

Now we get to the outside of the curb bit, the upper and lower bars of the curb bit cheek-pieces. Again all quotes come from “Seats and Saddles, Bits and Bitting” by Francis Dwyer, all caps are my emphasis and all parentheses include my clarifications when the meaning is unclear.

From page…

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Added by Jackie Cochran on January 5, 2019 at 1:22pm — No Comments

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