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Pony Club Life Lesson 6: Sometimes Riders Need to Be Assertive


Recently I met with some old friends and our conversation led us to Pony Club
Like many professional horse people started competing in Pony Club, so did I!
And just as many professionals fondly remember the time they spent with their friends and horses, I too have many happy memories.

But more than that, I now look back on life lessons to be learned at an institution like Pony Club.

The next lesson is,

6. Sometimes Riders Need to be Assertive.

After my first pony, my next horse was much more high-strung and some may say a little ‘too much’ for me.
He was a bit nappy and of course, each time I let him go in the direction he wanted to go, I made him worse.

My first competition with him was a six-bar event. In this event, there are six jumps in a row at an equal distance with each jump higher than the previous one.

Even though my new horse was nappy, he was an experienced jumper and I was looking forward to the event. In the practice arena, he went over the jump and then headed for the gate. Each time he did this, I stopped him (I could do that) and then led him back to the other side of the jump to practice it again.

When we did the competition, I saluted the judge (no circle of warmup) and then went through the start flags, over the jumps, and through the finish pegs. I didn’t worry that he bolted all the way back to the horse float, this was the highest that I had ever jumped in my life so I was elated! I loved jumping and I loved my new horse!
All I had to do was to keep him in the middle of the jumps, lean forward, and hold his mane so I didn’t get left behind.

But then, someone was calling my name! We were clear and had to go into the next round. I jumped on and he reared and spun around, he wasn’t going anywhere!

So I led him back, mounted saluted the judge, and went again. Everything was the same including bolting back to the horse float, except the jumps were even higher.
We had another two clear rounds, I had won my first blue ribbon and my horse was out of control.

Our next competition included a walk-trot race around a racecourse where the event was held. My new horse was a decent walker and could cover a lot of ground in trot. I wondered if I could get another ribbon, even a blue one.

We started off and a couple of other horses were ahead of us. But in the trot he was in the first two horses ahead of us, so even if we didn’t win there we still won a third. As we headed into the straight, he headed towards an open gate that headed back to the stables. I was so mad, that I turned and kicked him and kicked him until he stopped rearing and trotted ahead to finish the race.

Even though we didn’t win the race and didn’t even get a ribbon I was the winner that day. I realised that all the patting and kindness weren’t going to help the partnership with my new horse and that there were times in horse training when I needed to be assertive.

I did learn that it shouldn’t be because I was mad at the horse, but I did learn to be assertive while staying cool and I believe that is an essential lesson in training.

Up next – Pony Club Life Lesson 7 -Volunteer and learn ……

#PonyClubMemories #LifeLessons #EquestrianJourney

Enjoy watching!

Glenys 🙂


You can watch the full video here:

7 Important Life Lessons Learned at Pony Club

You can watch on YouTube the complete video playlist of the 7 Important Life Lessons Learned at Pony Club, click the button below.

7 Important Life Lessons Learned at Pony Club

Here are the other Lessons Learned at Pony Club:

Pony Club Life Lesson 1 – Look after others first


Pony Club Life Lesson 2 -Be persistent and you could be a winner!


Pony Club Life Lesson 3 -Encourage others to build their confidence


Pony Club Life Lesson 4 -Sometimes it is good to attract attention


Pony Club Life Lesson 5 -Keep learning wherever you can


Pony Club Life Lesson 7 -Volunteer and learn


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