While she loves to be in the saddle, she seems to enjoy learning more ways to keep Meggie in line. That Meggie can be such a stinker.
Another exciting thing with lessons this month is that Emma started her group lessons. The first class was pretty interesting but we'll get to that in a few. She now rides two days a week, Monday and Friday. She's loving it.
Anyway, here are the pictures from this month.
Learning tips on how to properly use her training stick.
Using her newly learned techniques.
The bits still a bit of a struggle, but Emma is getting better every try.
10Jul13- This was Emma's first group lessons. There are four girls in the class, Emma, Addison (she's 13 and Jill's barn helper, she's been riding for about a year), and two new girls, 11 year old friends, this is their first time taking lessons.
It was HOT!!! Emma's face was bright red before she even started doing anything strenuous. The fact that Emma was crazy nervous didn't help.
Bringing the tack over to the round pen.
Emma giving some pointers to one of the new girls.
This is where the lesson started getting interesting for Emma. I could see that she was fire engine red. She had already complained that her stomach hurt, but I figured it was nerves. After a trip to the porta-potty, she was back to work. As she was lunging Meggie, I noticed that she seemed to be dragging butt. I walked over to her to see what the problem was (figure it was the nerves still), except it wasn't. She could barely hold the training stick or the lead line. She looked at me and, with eyes barely open, mumbled, "I am SO tired!" So, I grabbed her pony, then had Emma sit on the ground while I tied Meggie up. I then scooped Emma up and brought her over to the car and we sat in the shade drinking some water. I still wasn't 100% sure it wasn't just nerves until I noticed she had water blisters along her neck. So, we doused her with some icy water, took off her helmet, and just chilled for most of the lesson. I even had her take her socks and boots off. One of the other moms had a big umbrella, so we sat under that near the round pen so we could at least watch.
With about 15 minutes left in the lesson, Emma was feeling well enough to get back out there. Socks and books went on, helmet went on, water got sipped, and she headed out to finish the lesson.
We learned a lot of non-horse stuff from this lesson. She now knows what it feels like to almost pass out. Both Jared and I told her to remember what that feels like so she knows how to handle it in the future. We also started bringing out a makeshift neckerchief that we could dip in cold water and tie around her neck. It has helped out a lot. Also, we keep the helmet off until she actually gets on Meggie.
I also learned that I need to trust my child more when she tells me she doesn't feel well.
22Jul13- I apparently missed an entire week of lessons. Oops.
We had a friend visiting and she got to watch Emma's lesson.
Tightening the cinch. Her muscles are getting strong enough that she almost gets the saddle tight enough with no help.
This is a position that Emma practices, where she hunches over, then...
She arches her back and is suppose to make her belt buckle (if she had one) touch the saddle horn.
Friends make things more fun!
Grampy watching Emma's lesson.
Boppa chatting to Gramma
29Jul13- Lots of ground work for this lesson. Emma learned some advanced techniques about maneuvering the lead rope and training stick during reversals (making the pony walk in the opposite direction during lunging).
Showing Meggie who's boss.
I took a great video of Emma putting her new techniques to use while lunging Emma, but it's pretty long, so I can't upload it here.
Well, that's it! It's so awesome to see the improvements Emma makes with each lesson. So much fun.
Hope you all had some fun this month!