Fall/Winter Goal List

I know what you're thinking - it's August, so why am I making goals for a couple months ahead? Because I'm probably going to get in about 3 rides before they are home, that's why. In case you can't tell, I'm pumped for September. My horses are going to be home next month. Um, yeah. That's happening. And I'm so flipping excited. I can finally achieve goals and do things! Hooray! And I will have TIME. (Time? What is that?) 

So, in order to be responsible and become a better rider attempt to continue waiting without pulling my hair out, I made a list of goals for the Fall/Winter of this year. I don't have many big ones, but hey, goals are always good and I always do so much better when I can look at a list and be able to check things off. It kind of gives me the boost that I don't really have right now when I get something down.

For Red:

  • Work on collection. I'm actually able to get him to slow down into a slower trot (Not quite a jog, but it's getting there) in the hackamore. It seems like after that one lesson, things clicked for us a bit despite the trainer not working out at all and I did learn a few things and Red definitely got his memory jogged and he seems more willing to back up, jog and etc. 
  • Work more on leg pressure. Red will work on leg pressure pretty well but he does need a bit of a refresher course. He'll pick it up about halfway through a ride when we work on it and do wonderfully once he realizes "Oh, you are asking me to do that!" so I want to spend a few rides just working on that to get his mind thinking a bit quicker when I ask him to work off of the pressure. 
  • Try new bridle options. He's in his mechanical hackamore now and does well with it, it does fit well and I have pretty soft hands so it doesn't hurt him and he's comfortable in it, but I do want to be able to switch to softer and softer things as we go along. I've decided that we don't have a future in showing, it's just the cold hard facts. With help and a trainer and more money, I do think he could be an amazing show horse but it's just not in the cards for us, so I feel free in the ability to take him off of all of the pressure and etc and get him more responsive to me and other riders. I'm going to order an Indian Bosal this week (Basically a very mild type of bosal made of soft rope) and try it out. Eventually I'd like to have him riding in a rope halter (and bridleless, hopefully) like an average horse rides with a bit. He LOVES bridleless work and he really comes alive during that so I think he'll do good.
  • No. More. Barn. Sour. Ever again. Okay so I'm not expecting my horse to be perfect all the time, but I do not want him to become barn sour like he was again. I'm excited because new barn hopefully means he won't be sour because he won't be spending that much time in the barn anyways. On nice days, we'll feed in different parts of the farm (pastures and etc) and they won't be stalled everyday. Unless they have a good reason to be in the barn, they won't even be able to access it from their pastures (it's closed off from the pasture, unlike at our current barn) and they'll just be able to see it. Plus, if they do get sour I have almost every day to work them with it. 
  • Gain more muscle! Red stays in pretty decent shape in the summer when I ride once a week so he's not an easy keeper by any means, but he does get chubbier than I'd like and in the Winter, he either gets way too fat or just...straggly. In the winter, I plan on riding whenever it's not too freezing and if it is too cold to do much, I'll continue lunging for a few minutes in replace of that. In the summer, he'll get lunged a couple times a week if not more. Maybe a few minutes before a ride. I want him to get to my goal weight/muscle and stay there. He's good as far as weight right now (He's actually at the best weight I think he's been right now and vet/farrier agree) but he does need a bit more muscle, specifically in his hindquarters and chest.
  • https://www.facebook.com/MosieTrewhittLibertyHorsemanship  #libertyhorsemanship #Liberty #horsemanship #training #horses
    Little Pistol Annie.
  • Work on more tricks. This is kind of a silly goal but I think it's great for horses that aren't in lessons or show often to keep their mind working on different things. Red loves learning these and hey, it's cute. I want to get him smiling on command a bit better. He loves the hugging trick so that one is mastered, haha. I'd love to teach him how to lay down on command but I want to have someone help me so I do it safely. And I definitely want to teach him how to follow and sidepass on command, maybe work on backing if he's comfortable with it.
  • Last but not least, do more liberty. This goes for me and him. I want to master liberty and have a stronger bond. This will take time but I think it'll be awesome when I can go out and work on that daily. 

For Me:

  • Get in better shape. I've been running/walking every day and I've lost weight and definitely gotten in better shape than I was last year (I have asthma and every time I tried to run for more than 5 minutes last Summer I would have to stop or else I'd get into a bad coughing fit) and I can sit the trot so much better for a longer period of time, but I want to get in even better shape and gain some muscle and do some no stirrup work (It isn't just for you English people, hahaha!) and be able to post the trot for longer.
  • Find a trainer. I would probably do about a lesson a month at the most but I would love to find a good trainer (hopefully a natural horsemanship trainer) to help me out with things. Someone that Red and I both like and enjoy working with. I think we're doing good so far but I would like to find someone that can help me with not only riding but groundwork as well. (I may have found someone to come out already but it's not set in stone. Working on kinks as far as price and etc now)
  • Work on Posting! Post post post post post the trot. That's all I have to say.
  • Master the canter as much as possible. I want to become more comfortable during the canter and I desperately need to work on EQ when we are going faster than at trot. I tend to just stop thinking when we canter/gallop and I need to stop doing that, lol!
  • Work on patience. I'm not a patient person by any means, and patience is something that you desperately need when working with horses. Red has taught me a lot about patience and I think I've gotten better, but it's still hard not to snap at my loveable red horse when he decides to be stubborn or lazy. 
  • The first post of 2013!
    Fictional characters in a TV show, yet they still are my rolemodels in this horse world.
  • Be content with where I'm at, who I'm with, who I am and the horse I own. This is more of a reminder, than a goal. I've never had the desire to have another horse other than Red. I've never been able to understand that quote "Horses are like potato chips, you can't just have one" because I love my horse so much and I can't imagine not being content with him. He's my everything and I have no desire to replace him or even ride another horse. I love riding different horses but at the end of the day, I'll always choose to ride my own. But it is hard sometimes to keep yourself in check when it seems like all of these people have these amazing trained horses that are winning them ribbons as they run from show to show in fancy trailers. (I'm not pointing fingers at anyone in my blogging world, just so y'all know. This is about 99% of my personal friends so no one get all uppity on me) At the end of the day, I want to be who I am and love the horse I own. 


  1. Good luck! I need to work on cantering too.

  2. Goals are a good thing to have! My goals have been pushed to the wayside... :-(
    You mentioned trying Red in an Indian Bosal. Have you tried him in the Dr. Cooks that you had won a while back? I could be wrong, but they are almost identical in terms of the 'mechanics' of them. The problem I would see with an Indian Bosal is that depending on what type of rope is used it may not release as easily as the Dr. Cook. My old riding instructor had all her lesson horses being ridden in Dr. Cooks bitless because they were much gentler, especially with students who were just learning to ride. Another option is to just trail ride in a halter and lead rope. My friends do it all the time. I've done it. Other times i've just clipped my reins onto a halter and away we went.
    One more option would be, to look for something like this. :-)

    1. I tried it a few different times and he hated the cross under straps. :( He was so confused by the pressure down there under his chin. I looked at the Indian bosals and they said that they can do cross unders or sidepulls depending on what I need, so I think I may try the sidepull option.

      I've never heard of a hackamore noseband like that before! How neat! Thanks!!

  3. Best of luck! I need to work on some of those things too with my mare.