Friday, August 12, 2016

10 questions for August

Thank you as always L Williams for helping me keep the content coming even when my own saddle time is lacking! Not that that hasn't stopped me from milking out every last word from the moments I *do* spend with the ponies haha.

So here's some light reading for your Friday morning - enjoy!

1. What is your biggest source of caffeine that gets you through the day? My beloved iced coffee cup the size of my face, spiked with a couple shots of espresso =D

2. Do you honestly think your trainer is the best trainer for you? This is an easy "No" bc I have so many trainers, how could any one be the best? I think each of them adds value in different ways to my ride. Sometimes it's all about technique and precision and method, sometimes it's lecture and talking or thinking it out, and sometimes it's just about getting out there and doing it and seeing what happens.

3. One token of advice a fellow rider/trainer/horse person told you that you still remember to this day. 
"Experience is that thing you get right after you needed it."
"If you don't like the way it looks the first time, ride it with everything you got bc it's not going to look any better the second time."
"If things aren't working you're probably going too fast."
"Confidence building, not confidence proving."
"Horses learn in the release."
"Learn from people whose horses get old."

lots of questions about trainers in this month's edition, so here - enjoy a couple pics of my jumping trainers that i bought last fall but never used

4. If riding meant costing your family so much money that they'd basically be on the poverty line, or making your family terribly unhappy, would you still do it? Lol this question .... the only possible answer here would shine a bright brilliant light on my extreme selfishness haha, so I plead the 5th ;)

5. Would you ride while pregnant? Sure but... um. Thanks but no thanks on all that noise haha

6. How do you tell when a horse likes someone/has bonded with you or someone else? Tricky question! As someone who has always enjoyed feeding shifts at barns, I love that feeling of walking up to a field full of hungry horses, looking at you eyes aflame with undying love. Of course that look goes away as soon as they eat haha.

I also appreciate when a horse keeps their attention on me when there are other distractions around. Some of that tho is more attributable to me believing that effective training requires that I be more interesting to the horse than their surroundings. However that needs to happen.

Neither of these examples really gets to true affection or a bond tho... I think that's harder to verbalize. Maybe the only way to describe it is that a horse who trusts you will say "Yes" when maybe they would rather say "No."

i'd say these horses look pretty happy tho!

7. Are horses capable of loving, in your opinion? I like to think so :) (even if the scientist in me doubts it lol)

8. If you could have one horse from your past come back for 5 minutes, who would it be, why, and what would you do with them in those 5 minutes? Another hard-to-answer question... there are so many horses in my past.... I'd love to ride Smellie Mae (gone too soon!) again, and feel how cantering down to a jump on her felt like there were giant neon placards counting down "5! 4! 3! 2! 1! LIFT OFF!" Or try to hang on for dear life as she whirled around some roll backs like the catty little pocket rocket that she was...

i'll always love this horse!

9. Should a trainer also be a friend, or should it be a student/teacher relationship? I'm honestly not too opinionated on this matter. For me, the most important element of my relationships with a trainer is TRUST. I have to unconditionally trust them to really learn from them. So... in instances where that trust is alive and well, I see no issues with also building a friendship on that. All the same, tho, I'm not particularly close with any of my trainers outside of lessons.

these gorgeous fall pictures make me hopeful that maybe i can get back out competing again this fall!

10. One piece of advice/training you were given by a trainer or mentor that you look back on now and view it as incorrect? My first trainer basically abhorred rein contact of any kind. As she grew older, she became more protective of her horses and felt like pulling was a cardinal sin. She may or may not have been right about pulling = bad, but perhaps took it a little too far. And it's legitimately taken me forever to learn what contact really is bc I've been so conditioned to just throw it away.


Also - if you haven't already, don't forget to take a couple minutes to click through this quick survey on rider safety and gear. The answers so far have been FANTASTIC and I am really really REALLY looking forward to digging into the trends. 

Thank you all for your participation and shares - there are some pretty exciting and insightful findings in the data so far. I'm also loving the commentary haha!

Survey closes early Monday morning - so don't forget! One random participant will win a $25 e-gift card!


  1. That GIF is making my whole day!! All of your memorable good advice tidbits are SO good - must add those to my collection.

    1. haha that gif is an oldie but a goodie!!

  2. I love the "learn from people whose horses get old" quote.

    Also I can't wait to see what results you get from the survey!!

    1. i'm wracking my brain trying to remember where i read that bc i'm about 99% sure i read it on a blog... it's a great piece of advice tho!

  3. wooo 10 questions! I love that first gif, reminds me of Calcifer from Howl's Moving Castle

    1. yassss lol - thanks for doing the 10 questions!!

    2. I just looked this up and now I want to read this book! Thanks, L!

  4. Good answers! This month has some really excellent questions.

  5. I love love love this: "Learn from people whose horses get old." :)

  6. Great answers!! - especially loved all those awesome quotes that have stuck with you.

    Love the first GIF also hahahaha

  7. I am great at throwing away contact too