Julie Braddon, BHSAI Int SM (Regd) PC Accredited Trainer

t: 01963 33366
e: julie@juliebraddon.co.uk


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First jumping lessons ...

Posted by: Julie - 03 Jun 2012 14:05

And she didn't disappoint!!  What a difference a few weeks can make.  The last time I took Millie to Hayley in mid April, she banged & crashed about in the lorry for the first few miles before she settled, we did our first canter & then she travelled home quietly.  This time, it was her turn for our Wednesday lesson as Maddy really didn't need to jump again so soon after Pontispool.  Once again I had to go on my own, so I took my time & gave myself plenty of it as time is the one thing that really stresses me out, & off we went.  Well, apart from the odd 'shout' Millie didn't move a muscle & travelled brilliantly, like a real pro!  When we got to Hayley's we had a good 40 minutes to kill but it was really beneficial.  Millie stood quietly on the lorry whilst I tacked up & just generally stood about.  I got pretty much straight on & we mooched about for a bit whilst Hayley stood & watched what we'd been working on since the last lesson.

Now I know she liked her the last time, but this time she liked her even more!  She put us out some canter poles & after wiggling over them in walk the first few times & then trot, Millie suddenly decided that it was far easier for her to canter over them!  So off she lollopped (if you get my meaning!!) working it all out for herself!  Clever little mare!

A cross pole was added at the end of the canter poles next.  Now I had no idea what she was going to do but I have seen her over a pole on the lunge so knew exactly how high that back end of hers can go!  The first time of asking, the front end went up & the back legs crashed through - very typical baby.  The second time, however, the back end came up as well & I very nearly ended up around her ears!!  WOW!!  It didn't take her long to work out what she was supposed to do!

We then moved on & jumped another cross pole with fillers on either side.  Again, Millie got there, stopped, looked & then proceeded to step over one leg at a time!  On her second attempt she popped it beautifully, although I didn't have much control on the other side!!  The third attempt was brilliant - before, during & after the jump!!

A third cross pole was added to our 'course', this time we had fillers with pictures of elephants on them.  Now these were really scary!  We did lots of wiggling & when she did jump we were a bit wobbly but we got over!  Then the cross pole turned into a straight rail, but she'd sussed it by this time & jumped it well.  We finished the session by jumping all 3 fences one after the other - Clever mare!!  I can't wait to take her again!! 

The rest of my week has been busy with lessons, both flatwork, jumping & continuing to help Hannah to re-back DB.  When we finished on Monday, she was actually sat on him so we were both really pleased.

As we go into half term, I've managed to get Jack onto some rallies that I'm not teaching, which will be really good for him.  My mission whilst he's off is to help him improve his balance - so lunge lessons started today!  Poor boy, but he did a really good short sitting trot without his stirrups & managed to let go with both hands in canter too!

I'm on countdown to Millie's first dressage next Sunday now & I'm trying to learn not only the 2 prelim dressage tests that she is doing but also get my head around Maddy's first BE Novice test ..... eek!


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