This weekend I attended the para camp training with Nina Vennables at Hartpury College. I was originally taking Bubbles but as she still is having a bit off time off we decided to take Diamanti for experience.
Diamanti was an absolute star, she travelled very well and settled in straight away. This was the first time taking her for an overnight stay with us, and she was so well behaved and wasn’t fazed with the atmosphere. We can’t believe she is only 5!
Unfortunately, I had been having a tough time with my body and was in a lot of pain and then had some very strange swelling so I didn’t ride on Saturday, but it meant Aimee had a brilliant lesson with Nina. This was brilliant for both Aimee and Diamanti. The lesson really helped Aimee with establishing a more consistent contact and balance. Diamanti worked well and took it all in her stride. Later on in the day there was test riding for us. I thought Diamanti had worked hard enough that day and I didn’t want to chuck her straight in the deep end. They very kindly said after the others had ridden, Aimee could just lead her round while the arena was getting packed away. This was perfect as she could go around with all the noise and see everyone but without the pressure. Her face was a picture when she saw everyone, never seen he eyes so wide.
Sunday I was feeling so much better. First I had a session on the mechanical horse. I find using the mechanical horse helpful as it shows how balanced you are on the horse and the consistency in the rein contact. As I don’t have any leg power Nina has to do the upward transitions but by using my seat and reins I am able to control the downward transitions. As there are two mechanical horses Aimee and Jodie both had a go. I have to say that was the funniest thing I have seen for a while…….sorry girls.
I was so looking forward to my lesson with Nina and getting on Diamanti. She is being so good with the chair and has got used to voice commands so I even managed to lead her from the stable to the arena. She was so carful. Once Aimee had warmed her up it was time to get me on. There wasn’t a hoist or a ramp available so my poor dad had to lift me from the chair and push me up while Aimee holds Diamanti and Jodie helps with my legs. Once I’m on though it just feels so perfect.
I was able to get a more consistent contact with her and she felt so supple. She gives me so much confidence as she really listens to me and is so relaxed. For the trot work I had Jodie and my dad just holding my feet. This is because my legs swing so much I don’t want to spook Diamanti. I’m hoping to get a saddle sorted soon to help prevent this and some straps.
We are all so proud of Diamanti this weekend she didn’t put foot wrong and we have all come away from the lesson with things to work on and improve.
Other news, we bought Ellie and her little colt home today. They had a little wander around the yard to see the other horses and then to the paddock. Both so happy and looking really well.