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The Wonders of Victories

February 12, 2013

Victories come in large and small packages. Evidence of this is shown to me every day.  Take for instance the last winter tournament this weekend.  I had riders who have been riding for years and some who have barely started their riding careers and many in between.  Each category of rider had at least a small personal victory regardless of ribbon color.  I have one adult rider in the WTC division on a new horse that we have had for about 6 weeks.  She had ridden him at the previous tournament after only 2 weeks of owning him and naturally had some issues. 4 weeks later and she comes home with a blue ribbon!  I had one adult WT rider who rode a different horse. Her result was a blue ribbon in a class that she has previously been unable to win despite her nervousness in riding this new animal.  I had one young rider, new to showing and riding in general. She was severely disappointed in her ribbons at the last tournament and really doubted whether she wanted to show again.  She has been diligent in coming to her lessons and last weekend she came home with 2 reserves.  This particular child has an extremely competitive nature and will be a superstar in the future.  Yet another young rider has come along slowly and has a very sensitive nature.  She can be really nervous and is particularly so when her father is watching her.  Now this is a very gentle and kind man and it took me a few lessons to figure out why one week she would be stellar and the next be a basket case.  I finally put two and two together and suggested to the mother that he stay home for her first tournament.  She was a raving success so I had mom bring the dad to the next lesson and she had a great lesson.  Dad came to the next tournament and the young lady still rode beautifully and came away with a blue ribbon!  Hopefully, we can put that issue to bed where it belongs!  Small victories!

I only ask from each of my students that they build each ride and do a little better than the previous ride.  Challenges occur daily when dealing with horses as they are a live animal and sometimes have moods that change, just as we do.  Having an understanding of the horse and why they react the way that they do is truly what makes one a horseman. Small victories, building on what you already know, and persistence are what allows us able to have BIG victories.IMG_0159

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