Monday, 22 October 2012

Kathy Playdon Clinic, Day 1

So after the horrendous drive home that turned from a quick 5 hour jaunt to 7 hours of driving hell with your eyes being blinded by snow, I had one hour to take the dog out to walk and play, eat supper, prep for the clinic, and get to the barn.  Luckily, the BO was just starting to load up when I got there so I threw all my stuff into her trailer, tossed the horses on the trailer (yay for good loaders!) and off we went.  Since the storm hadn't made it up here yet, the drive to the arena was normal and we made it there in plenty of time. 

We started the lesson off with some basic flat work with canter poles and trotting/cantering over raised poles in a small cross rail.  When I say small, I mean very small, max 8".  It was really neat to see some of the people in the group get over their fears and do things they would never do.  I really liked how Kathy pushed the envelope for every rider in the clinic, be it either the exercise itself, or take that exercise and make it more difficult by either taking away your stirrups, going into 2-point, or dropping the reins and doing the YMCA! 

I was very proud of Koda and how we rode the lesson through.  I was expecting him to have some issues with the canter poles as we've had some in the past, but we went through with no issues.  The way Kathy had the poles set up was either you could do one, two, or three of the poles, but you must do at least one of them.  They were staggered so that if you wanted to do all three, your space over the pole was very small and your line must be absolutely straight.  We nailed it the first time through, so had to do it without stirrups the second time through.  We ended the lesson with a 1-stride combination and single fence on the other long side.  Everyone went through, and for some of the riders, the fences were raised.  The second fence through the 1-stride just kept on going up and up to the point where I didn't want to ask how high it was (I have a "knowledge of height" issue).  Koda was a rockstar and just kept on going, never an issue.  At the end of the lesson I broke down and asked Kathy how high we had gone, and she responds "oh, I think it was about 2'9." 


I haven't jumped higher than 2'9" and that was only on Dillon who I knew could handle the height and would take care of me.  It didn't feel that big to me, and after talking to Kathy, she mentioned that I shouldn't school below 2'6", unless I'm working on something new that has a tight corner, or is more difficult.

I'm so proud of my boy!!!!

P.S.  Sorry there is no video or photos from day 1, the camera only came for day 2 and 3. 

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