Shiraz got two days off and my first ride would be our Wednesday jump lesson. I was a bit hurried as the coach asked if I could start a half hour earlier than originally scheduled but I still took the time to lunge first which resulted in some pretty impressive bucks. There were a lot of people riding in the ring at the time so I felt horrible for disturbing the peace but quickly changed into her bridle and hopped on to join my coach and the other rider in my lesson.
|The wild beast taking a nap before her next rampage.|
Then I came out the next day armed with ulcer treatment, a flashlight to try and see her back teeth and a stool so I could reach all the spots to give her a complete massage. I took her out to ride first to watch for triggers to her behavior. Except there were none. She was a fucking saint.
So what is going on? When I look back on all my lessons with this coach, Shiraz has only been calm for one lesson. Of course she is going to think something must be wrong with her! When I ride on my own I can take my time, warm up slowly and adjust the plan as I go to help Shiraz be calm and comfortable. Lessons tend to be at a busier time at the barn so the atmosphere is different. I am less relaxed too which does not help. Then add in a faster warm up and Shiraz loses some marbles.
I am still treating for ulcers and teeth will be done next week (I had already planned on doing her teeth this fall regardless). But honestly I think Shiraz is just a sensitive young snowflake that is expressing her lack of confidence. When I slow things down she can be very relaxed and happy to play.
I don't want to avoid pressuring her; she needs to learn to put on some big-girl panties and deal just as I have. I just feel like I need to set her up for success by making sure the pressure is fair. So I have asked coach if I could be switched to a private flat lesson for the next little while so we can work on more simple exercises at a slower pace and build back up to jump lessons as we go.