Monday, July 28, 2014

Clinic Hangover

So I'm one day out from the clinic and in a clinic hangover.  At first I was calling it a clinic coma, but I decided hangover was more appropriate.  I'm tired, groggy, slightly disoriented, and feel like I was run over by a truck.  Twice.

All that said, please forgive what should be a horrible attempt at recap-ping this clinic.

Day 1

I showed up to the barn nice an early on Saturday since I was the first ride, and immediately ran into the BO who informed me Mollie had been coughing all morning.  Great.  Because there's no better time to be coughing/breathing so hard that you can't even be ridden than the day of a clinic.  Luckily for me the clinician was very understanding and we had a very "theory" based lesson and really nit picked my position to death so Molls could have an easy day.

Learning how to sit up straight because I suck at it.
 My main take aways from that were:

  • I cannot cannot cannot arch my back.  So stop doing it, self.
  • I need to sit a hair more forward than I think I do.
  • I need to stop worrying about stretching my shoulders back because all it does is make me arch my back.  Instead I need to put my ASIS through my forearms and then think of "opening" my chest.
  • Rolling my pelvis/ASIS forward and through my forearms needs to happen every second.
  • I need to think about keeping my thighs more vertical, my calves a hair back, and my toes forward, not out.
Jean Luc also did some very cool demonstrations that I wish I had on video.  In essence he held up one finger and I put a finger up to his.  We very lightly pushed back and forth so there was a conversation going on like the conversation you constantly have while riding your horse.  He then proceeded to tighten his forearm and I could no longer feel our "conversation" through my finger.  Then he tightened his shoulder, same thing.  Arched his back, same thing.  Basically a very basic demonstration that if we tighten anywhere in our bodies it royally effs up everything.  But he used better language than that ;)

He even got on Molls for a second to show me a few positioning things, and Molls turned into a little midget pony right in front of my eyes.

Lastly I'm including this little video because even though it's sideways and we're just walking, he says things so much better than I ever could.  He's basically talking about how correct riding has less to do with obedience and submission than it does correct technique.  I paraphrased below because his accent can be tricky at times.

"...When you do it right they respond.  Immediately.  Because it's not obedience, it's not submission, it's natural.  It's comfortable, it's dancing the same dance.  Therefore, the second you ask, they respond.  So if they don't, they don't hear you the way you say.  Something is wrong.  It could be postural, it could be the balance, it could be dynamic, it could be the tone.  If one part of your body is too contracted, that does not work."

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