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Feeling Down

My pony has a great sense of humor

I'm not sure if anyone else has seen this article floating around but I read it a couple of weeks ago and it's been making me feel down ever since. I tend to doubt myself and always question if I'm doing the best that I can. That makes me successful at things but I also have to be aware of this tendency or I can tend to spiral and get more and more negative.

This time I caught myself and realized that I was feeling bad based on this article.

I've always been careful to give Katai lots of breaks. I've also read a lot of Jec Aristotle Ballou and she is an expert on muscles, muscle recovery, and how to properly condition your horse. However, it's been making me doubt myself and question everything I do.

It's also been giving me the odd thought that maybe this isn't good for Katai or maybe she's struggling when actually it's pretty clear to me that she's doing amazing and continuing to get stronger and fitter. She's maintained soundness, other than a hoof trimming thing, and her musculature is even, soft, and she's been healthy.

Yep, always with the tongue

Katai has been flexing her new muscles a little and has started kicking out (or bucking) when she disagrees with what I'm asking her to do but I don't think that it's anything out of line for an opinionated red head, who now has the strength to be athletic like that. Of course I wish that she were bopping around with perky ears but Katai isn't and won't ever be that horse. She's tricky, opinionated, a pony, and my perfect partner in so many ways.

The positive part of this is that it's been another good reminder to alternate dressage rides with other rides. I've been using the drill team rides for this but now I've also added cavaletti days, lunging days, and outdoor days (which ends up being on Saturday normally since that's the only time I can ride outside in the daylight).


  1. I get into that thought process after every bad ride. If it helps, one of the ways I can tell if Midge is being sassy vs frustrated/tired is taking a walk break. If she's frustrated/tired it gives us a reset -after a bit her head is down and she's sighing and thinking things through. If she's simply being disagreeable, walk breaks involve sass over basic things (like actually walking) and it becomes quickly apparent she's trying to bully me. Human abuse - Denny needs to have a chat with her, I think, before this dressage thing stresses me out completely ;)

  2. Don't feel bad about yourself! We ALL make the mistake of pushing too hard once in a while, but you are so tactful and thoughtful in your training, I don't think you need to beat yourself up over this! I was a total jerk to my own pony the other day, and wonderful creature that he is, he's forgiven me for it. And I was sure to be more thoughtful and listen to him better the next time I rode. You're doing just fine. :)


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