For years I’ve gone to the gallops on foot with pony racing kids and team chasers. In fact, for years I did everything I could to avoid going to the gallops on Pea! I’m just not a speed demon. Things changed a few weeks ago when Pea’s chiro said we needed to do some fast work. At this time of year our normal canter routes are quagmire so going to the gallops was the only way to make this happen.
I have been twice now, once with one pony racing kid and today with four of them! I have thoroughly enjoyed both trips and even let my stirrups be hoiked up about a million holes today (definitely not up for a racing saddle).
It is easy peasy, all you do is ride in a straight line, no steering required, very few transitions too. There is definitely a recipe for a successful gallops experience though:
Trust – I trust Pea and I know how she works. I admit that both times I’ve been nervous incase she brought out her firey side but have had absolutely nothing to worry about. I can walk or trot her even with other ponies bombing off in front of her – she’s an absolute star!
It is obviously also easier if you can trust the ponies and riders you are with.
Knowledge – Knowing how to bridge your reins and getting into a safe position is what it is all about.
Equipment – Neck strap! Body protector! All the things to make you feel safe.
Have you been to the gallops?