Pole and Jump training evening at Epworth

We have been back from holiday just 5 days and Julie want to get into training with Lightening already! This evening was Sam’sPoles and Jumps” class, the weather was mild, a bit cloudy too but the predicted rain held off. Kath drove the big blue horse-box with care as we made our way over to Epworth with Julie Lightening and Rio aboard, I followed behind in the red Landi.

Remember to double left click on the photos to bring them up LARGE!

IMG_4527IMG_4544IMG_4543The first thing to do was warm everybody up, so some laps around the field was the first thing everyone did. Just like the old legs stretched before Sam brough everyone to heel.

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Some adjustment were made as they jogged around the field, bit like changing a CD whilst driving I suppose?…No?

Sam got the girls to ride over the poles on the ground first stepping nimbly between then at an even pace and under complete control..or tearing through them booting them all over the place! The jumps were next and the bar was set really low for the first couple of laps.

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Meanwhile the girls went round and round until Sam was happy with the spacings of the poles.

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                                             OH this isn’t so scary after all!

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                                            Actually you know, maybe it is!!

                                     (Double left click to make the photos LARGE)

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Finally Julie gets Lightening to jump like a real horse and not some startled deer! He has come on a lot since moving in with us bless him. Epworth today, Earls Court and the rest of the world tomorrow!!

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                    Both laugh and wonder what all the fuss was about.

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Sam was quite pleased at everyone’s progress this evening. These four guys went of to get a bit of food and a drink before they went home. The second group had tacked up and were waiting for their turn at the poles.

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Behind the smiles were mixed  bags of nerves..at least for the first couple of minutes! Then it turned to “Tally Ho” and raise the bar some more!

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The sun was dropping now and long shadows were cast, the haze of the early evening began to fade. But still the girls cantered around the field full of enthusiasm, the previous fluttering apprehensions gone completely now.

 

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Sam’s professional eye skips from one rider to another and back again as the canter round and round and round, stepping in out and over poles, praising, cajoling nudging and helping everyone, faults were straightened out quickly as horse and rider began to get “in the zone”. She judges the time to bring them over the jumps, the bar set at ground zero to begin with, getting the horses to think and to build up confidences.

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Some of the bars were raised for the more able IMG_4644jumpers, the rest took a minute to watch and aspire.

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          It not hard to be impressed at the level of skill and bravery

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 Sam is never far away from the action and was always advising, tweaking and constantly offering bags of encouragement.

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