Monday, October 3, 2011

Cross-country, with pictures!

So Rev and I did a little bit of cross-country schooling on Sunday/ Woot! It's the first time we've done xc since I fell at Rafter K, and I was a bit nervous. Still, I kept telling myself that dude, this is Reveille under me! we're going to be fine! And we were. I have a couple of new issues to fix, namely my new tendency to balance on my hands and therefore hold Rev in too tightly and my reluctance to get Rev moving fast enough on course.

The Sprinkler Bandit was kind enough to come take pictures and even a little bit of video, for which I am hugely grateful. I see what I need to do to fix my hands and elbows, I think, and I can make some real changes, knowing what I look like in the irons.

Before we get to the pictures, I should just say that the barrels kind of worried me. According to Rev, blue barrels eat horses. However, she did them just fine. It was all in my head. :) As usual. And I would also like to register here that we're doing really quite well. Way better than I ever thought we'd do. *grin* If you had told me a year ago that we'd be doing this, I'd have thought you were being overly kind.

We started in the arena, jumping the same five-fence exercise I posted about earlier. From Rev's feet, this looks like a gallop, but I'm pretty sure it's just a canter:

Landing from one of the diagonal lines -- I like how close I am to the tack here:

And then we went out to the xc field and started jumping. This is actually our last run at the barrels, and this was -- despite the evidence -- our best jump. TSB says she took this one a split second too soon. We were attacking the fence, we were together, we were on pace, it was awesome:

MT discusses things with us, and Rev both listens carefully and makes sure I'm listening:

And then we wait for our next turn. Rev finds this boring:

We get to go again, and we jump the rolltop about 20 meters per minute (mpm) too slow, evident in my position here, but not so much Rev's legs -- GO REV!:

I have no idea exactly what 20 mpm feels like, so I kick on and go ... uh, faster ... and the jump improves for both of us. This is my favorite shot of them all:

Then we wait again, and Rev snoozes:

And now the video! I am trying in this video to really soften my elbows and get some pace going -- you can see my elbows flapping as I try to break them free. I didn't get the pace quite right, but ... the next couple of times we got the pacing better!

Thanks, TSB, for the photos! This will help a LOT!!