This is my new blog to continue my journey with my Dales Ponies. It will also be the story of my building a new life for myself, alone now, except for my friends, horses and dogs, since my partner died in March 2009. We had lived and worked together, mostly twenty four hours a day, for nearly 28 years and I have never lived alone before. It is a tribute to my wonderful friends that I am still here, still sane(ish) and ready to re-invent myself. I love them all more than words can ever say and can never thank them enough for all they have done and are still doing. It is also a tribute to Alexandra Kurland and 'The Click That Teaches' that I know how to save myself now. To new beginnings.......

Tuesday, 13 October 2009

Videos of Grace and Reinless Halts.

I got up early this morning and found the time to ride all three of my Dales plus longrein Crystal. I also managed to talk a friend into videoing Grace and I doing reinfree stops in the field. I love doing this so much! I hate feeling old and doing this sort of thing makes me feel like a teenager again. Grace loves it too and is now so keen to canter, having been clicked and treated for halting after the canter - a bit of reverse physcology - she has to canter to get to the bit that she gets clicked and treated for. It's almost impossible to believe that she used to hate cantering and was very unbalanced and uncomfortable in canter.

I'm also working up to standing on her back, as you can see from the other video. I have a little way to go yet but I'm using Rosie as my role model!!! I like to pretend that I'm someone I admire when I'm doing all sorts of things and with riding I've gone from imagining that I'm Camilla Naprous to imagining that I'm Rosie!! It's a bit mad, I know, but it keeps me happy!!!!!!!!


  1. Nice videos - it's great to see you in action, and Grace looks marvelous! What cue do you use to ask her to halt from the canter? I have a very forward Thoroughbred mare who would benefit from being able to do a reinless stop.

  2. Nice job. Nothing like having your horse respond like that.

  3. Nice job for the sliding stop. But a little warning, it is very hard on the hocks, that is why my mare has osteoporosis in her hocks, and she was sliding with sliders : special shoes for sliding on well groomed sand arena.

    Sorry to put a cool shower on your fun :-(

    But i guess you might enjoy this video, forget about the tummy, he is a star.
    The fun starts around 2'30", before he just speaks, very nice stop at 3 minutes.

  4. Sorry forgot the link O_o

    Just put two sliders on Grace, and soon you will be sliding over 8 metres!

  5. I just love to see you having a good time together with Grace, Helen!
    It is the very best, isn't it? When you can feel that the horse is enjoying the work too?

  6. Thank you very much everyone.

    Kate, to cue the halt I lean back slightly and pull on the front of the saddle, and sometimes make a noise like the brakes squealing on a car, but that's more for comic effect!!!!!! I am SUCH a big kid!!!

    Muriel, I do worry a bit about the strain on her hocks and only practise it occasionally and always on good going. I think the fact that she's not bracing herself against it at all, as she's in charge of the way that she stops and it's all totally voluntary probably makes it less risky though. I hope so anyway.

    HorseofCourse and Jean, it definately is the best feeling in the world, having fun like that together. I am so privileged and lucky to have them.