We have had some fabulous all-rounders join our family and I have always loved the thrill of the showjumps
Alfie came to us when I lost my confidence thanks to a few tricky falls off our Ninja. We had also lost our lovely colt out of my KWPN mare so we were feeling a little but glum about the whole equine ownership.
Alfie has been with us four years and although his jumping skills are lets say a little haphazard he has taken to the dressage boards in fine style
Rider having had a few tricky rides had picked up a few bad habits, well quite a lot of bad habits !
We met Cara Hayward through ROR training days and we met Tom Graham through Bicester Riding Club. Both instructors will have a sit on Alfie from time to time to see what I am feeling. Alfie is one of those horses that looks gorgeous from the ground but on board he can feel like a right wriggly snake.
Recently Tom has started to work a bit more on rider posture and stability. Alfie has the most uncomfortable trot to sit to when he isn't playing game so I find it very hard to relax, basically I feel like I am about to fall off every few strides !
Now the Ginger Ninja is working more consistently at home I try to apply our Alfie lessons to my riding at home. Practise at home is much easier with the Ninja he is like sitting in a big comfy arm chair, one of those soft chairs that you just cant help but sink into.
Tom has this amazing ability to see when I am struggling, he gives me a different exercise and bam corrections made and problems solved. If only I had him in my ear for all my show day warm ups
Cara has been trying to concentrate on our overall look helping us achieve a more consistent contact whilst maintaining the straightness and rhythm.
In February 2017 we picked up the courage to try a lesson with Nuno Baptista who regularly comes over from Portugal. Previously thought we weren't good enough. The lessons are worth every penny. The classical knowledge he brings to my riding is amazing and Alfie just feels awesome whenever I have a session. My bad habits don't get passed Nuno, he explains why and what I am and should be doing in such an easy to understand way.