I was so busy yesterday morning and had such a lot to get through before I allowed myself to go to the yard that I didn’t ride until about 4 o’clock. The yard was just quietening down after Saturday lessons and everyone was going home except me!
I made the fatal error of forgetting that it had recently rained and went up to get Pea in my riding boots. If you follow me on Instagram you will have seen the mud around the hay feeder on my stories. It was not good.
I was feeling tired and a bit flat and initially said I was only going to go out for a short bumble into the village but as soon as we got out of the yard and down the track I felt instantly better – the magic of horsepower!
I texted my YO to say I’d changed my mind and was going further but as we plodded along I had a new idea. I hadn’t cantered out since my hip replacement (which is now eight months ago!) and I thought it was about time I did. I intended on cantering out before Christmas but at that time I didn’t feel confident to go on my own and I didn’t get around to organising other people to go with. I’m really trying to get Pea (and myself) fitter and stronger and I know that cantering out is going to help that and have a positive effect on our work in the school. Yesterday, with my hacking confidence at an all time high I thought I would bite the bullet.
At my yard, we are very lucky that next to our fields we have an uphill grass strip to canter up with no gate to go through to get to it! Although it is super convenient, there are four potential issues that you have to look past to confidently canter up there.
- You have to turn away from the yard to go up there which doesn’t always make for a happy pony if they think they are going back to the yard.
- You have to ride up next to all the other horses who tend to join in the ‘race’!
- There is an electric fence on one side of the strip and a ditch on the other!
- There is a gate at the top, which may or may not be closed, that goes straight onto a road!
Can you see how easy it is to wimp out of going for a canter? Anyway, I didn’t wimp out and it was lush to feel the wind whipping past us again (and don’t worry, she definitely stopped at the top to admire the view!)
So there we go, I now hack out alone AND am starting to canter out alone. I’m definitely not the confidence crippled rider I used to be!