Saturday, 20 August 2011

Equestrian Challenge Training, Day 1 to Trojan

Yestereve I rolled up at Wildwoods Riding Centre in leafy Tadworth (Surrey), there were youngsters learning to canter on real live horses but for me on Day 1 of training there was a metallic beastie awaiting me called the Trojan.

The best riding school I've ever known.
Sue welcomed me in and outlined the facts of my contract, and before I signed she made sure I was aware that real horses have their own minds and the chances of having a fall were high, 'Everyone does' she said - I loved her manner, no nonsense and really warm at the same time.

I waited outside Trojan's 'lair' as Sue found me a teacher.

The Stables
Hannah is a great teacher, once I was talked through the basics of how Trojan worked I was put straight into my first test - I had to try and maintain my weight in the right place while the robot horse went from Walk mode, to Trot, to Canter.

Giddy Up!
After my first test Hannah repositioned my legs and showed me how my posture needed to be corrected, looking in the full length mirror to my side I could see that I was doing quite a bit wrong.

The next task was to try and control my horse, taking tips from my instructor and learning how changes in posture and movement had a direct reaction from my stead. For this task the screen in front of me changed to show wide open fields, with a fenced arena ahead - my challenge was to direct Trojan into this area and maintain control as we rode around inside the fence.

The half hour lesson ended with a second attempt at the test to hopefully show progress - I've added the read outs below, the top is my first test where you'll see the red dot on the saddle is large due to my moving around too much.

I can't wait for my next lesson, hopefully I'll be the master of Trojan by the end.

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