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Hello wonderful riders!!! :)

How are you doing this amazing day today? :)

I want to have a chat today about my comp last Saturday. I thought it might be helpful to share my learnings with you, as you may be on the same journey as me!

So the main challenge I have currently in my tests, is this major disconnect between the horse I am riding in the warm-up, and the horse I get in the test.

In the warm-up Abe was crazy! In a good way!!!!!! He was doing what I call his crazy passage which is just HUGE and big and expressive and he is so forward and loose, and most importantly … SO EASY TO RIDE!!!! :) I was laughing in the warm-up to Phil saying he could ride Abe because it was so easy, and I just sit there and do nothing, use the very slightest of aids – and whatever I think Abe just dances!

Then …

I went into the ring :)

He felt great around the arena and good for the entry, halt, trot and the first extended trot was HUGE – all good! Then we came around for the medium trot into passage transition … and WTF? Dead. No energy, no dancing, no easy… I was forced to spur and kick, and look ugly as nothing was happening underneath me. From there it was just ugly, forced, yucky work. No harmony and lightness like in the warm-up, completely different feeling and riding.

Now as an NLP master practitioner, I know perception is projection. So while it is very easy to say he felt like that – I know that’s not true… I rode like that, it all is a reflection of me, and I need to be the rider that can change the horse, rather that what happens now which is the horse changes the rider.

When I ride a young horse, or get on my 5yo who is at elementary/medium level… I find it SO easy! Loes, who rides him, may be completely struggling with a movement, saying the horse is strong, and crooked and hard and not forward – I can get on and in 5 minutes have him loose soft swinging, easy and doing the movements perfectly. Frustrating for Loes, yes! Easy for me! :)

The problem is – I don’t have someone to get on Abe and show me that next level of understanding. I am maxed out on my level of knowledge. If I knew how to be better, I would … I just don’t know how to be better! I trust reading this you are also resonating with that frustration of not knowing enough.

What I also know is I will get better! I have been through all of this before! I have not been able to get a horse on the bit! And now my challenge is not having enough forward in passage! I’ve got this! The knowledge will come, and I will get better.

The annoying thing is I know what the steps to success are. There are only two ways you can be successful…

1. Try all the ways, find out what works and what doesn’t, and eventually you will create a system for success.

2. Model someone with a successful strategy – find out what they do … and just do that!

Modeling of course is quicker! Unfortunately, I have never had the access to the right models, so I have done it the long way – making mistake after mistake, until I discover the secret to make it work! I have done this all the way to Grand Prix, and will continue to do it until I figure out how to get 100% in the Grand Prix test! :)

To Your Success!

Natasha Althoff Signature