Catch and Release

I have had the Real Slim Shady stuck in my head for most of 2019 (okay fine, two days, that’s it, but still). Mostly the part where Eminem says, Guess who’s back, back again…

I am back! After a wonderful and relaxing holiday break, which sadly did not have ponies in it. The challenge of going home with only a carry-on to contain your stuff. And helmets are not very space-efficient.

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If I look away, maybe she will not be there when I turn around.

I have always enjoyed stepping away from riding for short periods of time. It does a lot for my bad habits, almost as if it waters them down. When I am not as “close” to the issues, I return to more of a blank slate.

As well, it gives me a chance to read up on the latest thoughts and methodologies of our esteemed equestrians on the internet. There is nothing I love more than to peruse Denny Emerson’s Facebook tangents or a thought piece published in the Chronicle by Charlotte Dujardin. Though sometimes I read outside my respective discipline, all of us are after the same thing: a horse that is listening and willing to perform what we ask.

Breaks are also nice as horses are usually given lighter schedules and are allowed to “be horses” for a couple of stringed-together days.

Yes, there are some horses that “need” a job and interaction, but they could also use time away from the regular routine.

I am always reminded of San Remo VDL, the famed equitation horse who only is regularly ridden during the Medals Season. That is probably the best life as a horse, be renowned enough that you can take months-long vacations each year!

Madison-Goetzmann-and-San-Remo-VDL
Beautiful equitation horse… (Photo by Phelps Media)
BSDSanRemo11
… and adorable fluffernutter (Photo by Becky Huestis)

Truly, to be a horse woman is to know pressure and release, and for us and our horses, the release is a crucial reward.

How do you all handle breaks from riding? Do you come back refreshed? Frustrated?

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