Pippa’s February Blog – A Slow Start to Spring

Pippa KBIS NSEA Bursary winner

Hello! I hope everyone had a fun half term and enjoyed a break from school – I certainly did! This month has been a slow one with not many events as the Equine Flu outbreak caused most competitions to be cancelled.

 At the start of the month, both my sister and I had a training session with some friends at the instructor’s yard. In the lesson, Phyllis was very excitable and strong as she had not been ridden for a couple of days and was happy to be out. I’m pretty sure my arms got pulled out of their sockets! We worked a lot on rhythm and lines into and out of jumps. As the lesson wore on, we became more collected and maintained a bouncier canter. The real drama, however, happened on the way home. My sister’s pony, Gracie, and Phyllis aren’t very good at travelling together and were fighting and kicking in the trailer. The trailer started to rock and Gracie had gone down. Still tied up with her head in the air, she was panicking and sweating. It was really scary. My Uncle was over from Hungary that weekend and so we were able to call home and ask him and my dad to come and help us. We managed to get Phyllis out of the trailer and as soon as Gracie was untied and the partition went down, she collapsed on the floor. After much trying, we got Gracie out of the trailer but she was holding one hind leg. We quickly came to the conclusion that Phyllis could not travel with Gracie, so we took Phyllis home (thankfully we were only five minutes away) and then came back for Gracie. However, as soon as the car engine was started she went into panic mode again. In the end, we had to call a vet and get Gracie sedated to take her home in the trailer. Once we were home, it took two hours to get her up as she was so high on sedative that she collapsed 2 miles from home. We got home at 1:00 am and I was so tired tithe next day and Gracie was off riding for 2-3 weeks. We have now bought a lorry so that Gracie and Phyllis can have a partition between them so they can’t fight. But it’s going to take a while to get Gracie travelling again.

A week later, we travelled to Bury Farm for the 90cm Arena Eventing. Unfortunately, due to going to fast and losing balance, we had a pole down meaning our quick time didn’t matter because we weren’t in with a chance of a rosette. The course consisted of a corner combination which had three short strides in between it and some brightly coloured showjumps and a water tray. After that competition, we are focusing on keeping the same rhythm between the jumps and staying balanced.

During the half term, I had another dressage lesson. We worked out keeping Phyllis’s head down and her shape more rounded. Throughout the lesson we managed to achieve her outline in a walk, trot and halt. Once our dressage starts to really improve we will hopefully be ready for the Eventing season.

At the end of half term, we had our first lesson with Meghan Healey working on Gymnastic Jumping. The lesson was was really good and we worked really hard – Phyllis was sweating at the end! I found out how to change the length of strides and to check Phyllis before the jump and pull her after so that she doesn’t run off.

This month we haven’t done too much, considering it was half term, but we have worked hard in our lessons and I have started to see progress in showjumping and dressage. The KBIS bursary was out to good use this month as we had a range of lessons and I am starting to have dressage lessons much more regularly. Good luck to everyone with upcoming events!


Until next month,

Pippa x

The 2019 KBIS NSEA Training Bursary is now open and you can find out more here

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