Personal Training, Open Days and Trying Too Hard

Lessons learnt

Due to a recent incident of Emma, on our yard, being badly kicked by one of my young horses when hacking together – I will now always insist that we are either truly side by side or behind each other – not staggered.  Poor Emma now has 3 bad breaks in her right leg, and a long recovery period.

Having to deal with a delicate management issue – sometimes it is better to learn by watching how others manage the situation rather than go guns blazing to get the same outcome!!

We had a difficult week leading up to our First open day  - with water pipes and water tank bursting due to the recent freeze – not great when you want the yard to look it’s best and you have no water all week!! Emma was meant to be working for us and managing her accident had a knock on effect both mentally and physically – it would have been easy to cancel part way through the week but Mum taught me that you don’t let adversity stop you achieving your plans and goals.

The horses generally worked well that week but I had a particularly difficult session with Vinnie as I was trying to get the feel I had in a lesson earlier in the week, but despite thinking I was doing the same process I couldn’t get the same outcome - I realised afterwards I was trying too hard - and should have worked with “less is more” and focused on the scales of training. - Rythm, suppleness, contact, impulsion, straightness and collection.



The open day on Saturday went really well and everyone’s hard work in the week leading up to it paid off. (A big thank you to Immy and Kate who worked tirelessly to have the yard and horses looking super!) Everyone enjoyed themselves including all of us. The presentation of the horses went well and I spoke about each of them, I would just add some banter during the pauses between horses. The demonstrations went very well with my coach John Bowen comparing while I was riding giving everyone lots of information  - despite the local hunt unexpectedly riding past the arena which caused amusement for our guests as the horses thought it was all very exciting!!! It was great to have Jess Burbage, from Top Spec, say a few words. We also showed everyone all the kit we use to keep the horses on the road. Lunch was a good chance to speak to everyone who came to support the day and this was very relaxed - only interrupted by 3 HUGE tractors and trailers who came to remove the muck heap as lunch started!!!


What’s helped

William (Ballycoog Breaker Boy) has pulled some muscles,getting cast in his stable and we are using a laser cluster to help repair these together with the ARC equine machine - both of these are helping alot and combined with lots of walking he’ll soon be back up and running.

I had 11 lessons over the weekend as well as the open day and these really reminded me how important the activity from the hind legs is so important to keep the contact.

I had a personal training session which really helped me get back on track with strengthening and conditioning my body.  I have worked hard over the winter but have struggled in the last few weeks with the horses work increasing.

The lorry came back having had a new skirt on one side as Dad had driven it like a car (without any horses)!! Then it was discovered that there was an issue with the rear wheels - another unexpected expensive!!!Always plenty of those with horses!!


A couple of the horses were scoped for ulcers, which is becoming more common - it is the first time I have seen this process being done and found this fascinating - the fact that we could see all the way into their stomachs was very interesting - one had ulcers and one didn’t so it was very interesting to see the difference between the two.

Lindsey HopkinsonComment