We all went to Nat’s horseback riding lesson as a family and it was exciting! Natalie was proud to explain things to me and Conrad and Odie is one of the biggest horses there! She was confident and comfortable, until we started and then it was a tad overwhelming to have such an attentive audience, so Conrad and I stepped back a bit and gave Nat some space and she quickly recovered and all was well!
Here are James and Nat grooming Odie before the lesson:
Here she is, about to start the lesson.
There are a lot of body reminders necessary to ride properly – and we’re working on right and left with Nat, so that she can respond quickly when she needs to steer. They practice walking down the middle, along the wall, and turning. This helps Nat to learn that she is in control of Odie and to steer him firmly!
Conrad found his shadow!
Nat practiced the ‘two point’ again, but this time, Odie walked while she practiced. She did a great job! It’s not possible yet for Nat to steer while doing this move, so Lisa guided Odie, so that Nat could practice her form.
An older girl arrived for her lesson, and Nat was excited to watch her (we caught her smiling the whole time) demonstrate trotting (seated trot and posturing trot – I think that’s what it was called….). At the end of the lesson, Natalie told us that she wants to be as good as the older girl. It was really cute. Nat guided Odie back to his stall and then she and James groomed him again and fed him carrots!
I took videos! We’ll post those later. Natalie trotted a bunch and did a really fantastic job! James was nervous, but Lisa was right there and it was really ok. She did win instructor of the year, so she’s really great! Natalie also did ‘around the world’ again, and I have a video of that as well. Next week, classes move to Thursday and we meet our new instructor, Rachel! Lisa will teach the lesson and will help transition Rachel into her new role. Fingers crossed it goes well! Lisa said that she really likes Rachel and that she is happy that she is teaching the classes exactly the same as Lisa. We’ll let everyone know how it goes! OH! When we first arrived, Natalie took a deep breath and smiled and said, “It smells like horses. I love it!”.