Riding wrap up 2008

2008 will be remembered as an exciting and happy year, regardless of poor health and pain issues and financial crises: we became home owners and I got back into horse-riding. 

I feel really pleased and proud of myself for what I’ve achieved this year in regard to horse-riding; for taking that chance and leaping into it, for working hard, loving it, and ultimately finding it so rewarding and fulfilling.

To summarise;  I got on a horse again for the first time in 22 years [give or take a year or so] back in March and was instantly as hooked as when I was 15, despite the physical challenges I faced this time around; both age- and health-related.

I wanted to get as much out of every lesson I could so I worked hard and pushed myself, both in and out of lessons.  My efforts were rewarded with developing skills, major improvements in joint stability and strength and balance, and receiving lots of confidence-boosting comments and compliments about my riding proficiency.

As therapy – both physical and emotional / mental – I’m living proof of just how incredible and successful hippotherapy [aka horse-riding therapy] can be.  I certainly way surpassed my own expectations of what the experience would bring me;  not just the pure pleasure of being with and riding horses, but the aforementioned improvements in strength, stability and balance have been significant.

I can only hope to continue reaping the rewards and benefits and personal fulfilment in 2009.  My goals are perhaps more specific than when I first clambered aboard an aging chestnut bomb-proof therapy horse; I want to push myself harder physically [work those core muscles, get those heels down, keep that leg on, etc], I want to learn a few dressage tests and maybe compete in a para-equestrain show; and I really, really want to do lots more work on cantering.  I feel the need for speed [controlled speed, please!].

. . . . . . . . . .

And yes, in case you were wondering, I DID put “pony” on my Christmas Wish List.  Okay so it was a little more detailed;  Welsh X Arabian Gelding, 14 hh, 6 years old.   Thanks, Santa.  Can you include ajistment fees, saddlery, et al too?

le sigh . . .

To all my horse-blogging friends; have a great festive / holiday season.  Thank you very much for inspiring me to get back into riding in the first place, and for encouraging me, helping me out with my various [mostly dumb] queries, and for always being warm, friendly and positive.

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