When I lesson these days on my horse, I find that I have gained the ability to understand but the body does not necessarily do what it is asked. My main focus these days is keeping my body balanced and the ability to slow my breath down and think about what i am feeling. All are things that we all hear when we ride with a trainer. Along with the usual inside leg to outside rein. I don't know how many years I have heard that one but until I started to go into my own body and realized how being balanced and feeling the horse underneath me I never really understood what that meant.
As children and young people you just naturally sit balanced and are just focused on the fun things you are doing with your horse(s). How many videos do we see where the pony/horse underneath is doing all sorts of things and they just sit there and laugh. Even if they come off, most of the time they climb back on and away they go. It does not matter if they ride Dressage, Jumping, Western, or pleasure, they are in it for the thrill and fun.
I can't really say when I lost that but as I get older my body just does not work the same way and so I have to work at staying as one with the horse. When did the mind take over the reins of what I should do when I ride???? I am not really sure.
I know quite a few riders that are very very left brained and over think what they should be doing. Today's work world encourages that as everything around us, has to be logical. No one has ever said horses are logical, they are instinctual and as riders we are struggling with this concept all the time.
Personally I have to focus now on what I feel in the reins, looking up (bad habit from working on a computer all day) keeping my body balanced, breathing at times. All the while trying to keep my horse forward, in contact and in a gait. OMG I then realize I have no idea of where my line is and who is in the ring with me. Oops.
Sometimes I miss the days when I was a teenager, and just rode. I would get on my borrowed horse and take off for the land that had the trails and creek by where we lived. We would spend hours just riding over trees, jumps, water and hills. I didn't think which rein I was on, if the contact was too light or too heavy, if my horse was on the right lead. We just went. I now watch some of my friends children and hope that they get to have some of the freedom's we had. Many are so focused on training and competition, that while they love it, it cannot really replace the freedom we had when there was the space and places to hack out.
Ok that was my squirrel moment for this one... lol anyway. I am trying to take more time to get away from constant training of me and my horses and to go for walks and enjoy the moment and move with my horses. get out of your brain and into what you feel in your body and not only will your horses benefit you will as well.
I hope that you are enjoying my thoughts. If so please do not hesitate to leave me a comment. Hope you are well, and Have fun with your horses.