Totally Non-Competitive Summer Goals

Totally Non-Competitive Summer Goals

I said a few weeks ago that I was taking a break from showing for sure in June, and most likely July… and I may just get crazy and add August to that list.  This probably sounds crazy from the “Goals!  Show!  Derby!” personality I had earlier this year… but I’m seriously happy right now enjoying my horse in a leisurely way.

My lesson on Sunday was super fun.  Sure, we got changes late, but I didn’t beat myself up about them.  I listened to my trainer’s instructions, and did my best to improve.  Simon was relaxed but fresh (and kind of tried to celebratory buck after a fence… which was hilarious), and we just had a nice time.


When I wrote my goals for 2014, I was very much in the mindset of “Horse shows are life.”  I still love shows and showing (and will in the fall, I promise) but I wanted to make some non-horse showing centered goals for the summer.  So, here they are.

WTC Comfortably Bareback. Not comfortable as in “Oh gee my lady parts don’t even feel compromised” but comfortable as in “I don’t think I will die!”   I’ve already done walk/trot, but need to get brave enough to canter.

Jump 3′.  My trainer swears I can do this any time, but it’s a mental block I’d like to get over.  Just not tomorrow… supervised in a lesson where she decides it’s a good idea to put the fence that high.  🙂


Ask for a lead change without diving to the other direction first.  This is becoming one of my trademark moves.  If I’m changing from right to left it’s much worse… so I’m cantering down the diagonal and I’m all like “Hey, gotta change left… know what would make that better?  DIVE RIGHT FIRST.”  Neither my horse or my trainer are very impressed.

No Stirrupage.  Yes, stirrupage is a word.  At least once a week.  It being “too hot” is not an option.  Really, I need to drop my stirrups every ride…. no excuses!


So that’s what we’ll be working on for a few months.  I know most people are ramping up for a busy summer of showing… so what are some of your goals for these upcoming months?

21 thoughts on “Totally Non-Competitive Summer Goals

  1. Yay, let’s not show together! Boo summer heat, anyways.

    All your beautiful jumping pics recently had me thinking you’d be jumping 3′ any day now- be sure to get a picture when you do! So exciting!

  2. All of those goals sound very do-able for you guys! My summer goals consist of taking as many lessons as possible to make up for my piss poor (lack of) riding all winter.

  3. I’m laying off the show goals now, too. It’s too hot! I like that you’ve still got lots to work towards though!

  4. I audited at a George Morris clinic this past weekend. I am in my mid-twenties on my own financially and my current horse is retired. I cannot sell or give him away, he deserves retirement. With that being said I don’t have my own horse to ride. So I beg/borrow/steal whoever I can ride at my trainers barn. I’ve been lucky enough to ride a friends thoroughbred and I was able to apply all of George’s methods and training. I had a wonderful ride last night focusing on transitions, counter canter, no sturrups, bending, etc. So it’s my goal to continue riding, stay in shape, be current with anything horse related until I can afford my own show horse again!

  5. My goal is to not have a heat stroke! Most of the shows in my area are over for the summer and won’t resume until early fall, when it’s cooler. So I’m planning to keep the horses in shape and take them to fun stuff, like the annual Beer & Brats Trail Ride put on by the foxhunting group. I mean, there’s a freaking creek to swim in!

  6. My goal is to take more pictures. I have gotten into the habit of get in, do my thing, get home. I would like to pause and take at least one pic per barn visit.

  7. I gotta figure out how to keep my horse from dying of heat stroke. Otherwise – more flatwork, and adjusting to a new trainer. XC schooling would be AWESOME too.

  8. I feel better after reading this seeing others taking the summer off. My goal for B was to do everything and anything I could this summer to make up for not doing anything over the last 2 years with him. But we keep getting halfway up the later then falling back down. Now I’m in my “take as much time as you need so it doesn’t take extra time later” mindset again! Can’t wait to see you make your goals! Maybe I can make mine.

  9. Once you get comfortable riding bareback be prepared to take weekly bareback rides 🙂 It is seriously the most relaxing thing to do after a long day when you dont feel like really riding but want some pony time!

  10. I think a lot of people take a break on their show goals during the hottest summer months. It seems like a really good idea!
    My summer goal? Get a medium trot out of the Redheaded Beastie.

  11. I thought I already commented on this… but apparently not? Short version: you totally can do 3′, bareback on a TB is the most painful thing ever (I miss my QH!), and good for you for continuing to work hard but not getting upset when things aren’t exactly perfect. Oh, and I lean for leads too… such a bad habit. Hasn’t worked for me yet, so why I keep doing it IDK!

  12. it’s okay to take a break from showing and just enjoy your horse. Those seem like achievable goals. Good luck! I plan on working on being better at riding the canter.

  13. Those are great goals, and totally ambitious for someone “enjoying her horse in a leisurely way”.

  14. I think it’s really good to back off on the showing sometimes and just focus on the training for the sake of training. I’m kind of in the same boat. I was all about the show schedule, but now I’m thinking I would rather put that money towards more lessons and clinics. A girl can only show so many training and 1st level tests before dying of boredom.

  15. I’m with you on the “”no stirrupage” goal! My coach has been hinting that we will be starting that now that I’ve been back into regular lessons for 6+ weeks. It’s hard, but so good for your legs and balance!

    I’m still showing this summer, but only because we only have shows in the summer! Darn winter and freezing temps. 😉

    I have two non-horse goals – one is to re-start my blog and the other is to maintain the extensive flower gardens at my house. I’ve neglected that a lot this spring to ride and show/work at shows!

  16. I have a show this weekend and then one more the following weekend and then I plan on taking a break for at least a few weeks or even a month. I might do some of the schooling shows on our property but that is it. I need a break!

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