I Broke the Connection

Second title option was: same old, same old.

I really struggle with keeping my wrists, primarily my left wrist straight.  Instead I like to bend and ‘break’ them while riding.

Breaky breaky.

Breaky breaky.

Can't even walk without breaking it.

Can’t even walk without breaking it.

Well trainer zeroed in on that in this week’s lesson since we were struggling with a true feel at the canter.  One second I’d be scrambling to rein her canter back in–the next I was (figuritively) flapping the reins are her.  Huge shocker: our pace around courses was not so hot.  Trainer eventually shouted at me across the ring telling me I had ‘broken the connection‘ with O and this was causing a lot of miscommunication.

This phrase really made sense for me and somehow made me more aware of when I was breaking my wrists.  Each time I felt like I wasn’t getting the right feel from O I would check my wrist before anything else.  9/10 times it was exactly what we needed. Really hoping that this new phrase and perspective on my outside rein, and my struggling left  wrist gets this bad habit fixed up.  I’m tired of dealing with the same issues.

I was really proud of how great O’s canter can be right now.  She’s getting the hang of holding herself up properly and now we can take some time to work on me again.  We didn’t jump anything exciting, but there was no refusals and a few decent lead changes.  All good things!

As far as the rest of this week of riding?  Epic fail.  It was cold and nasty outside, and the barn was discouraging rides. I did go out to pet the pony and checked her double blanket situation was still alright.  I think O was pretty surprised to see me.

"What are you doing here?"

“What are you doing here?”

"Do you have foods?'"

“Do you haz foods?'”

The answer was yes.

The answer was yes.


13 thoughts on “I Broke the Connection

  1. I break my right wrist over! If we could just take each others’ left/right hands we’d be perfect! One thing that helped me was to hold the reins with my thumb clamped down on top not flat, but bent, with the pad of your thumb by your fingernail firmly pressing down on the top of the rein, instead of the big flat pad of your thumb doing so. I can still break my wrist over in doing this but it’s harder. My next step in the “stop breaking your wrist over Nicole” plan is going to be to over exaggerate the opposite flexion, I’ll let you know how it goes.

  2. that’s actually a really great way to think about it! i do crazy things with my wrists too (and naturally it’s different one side from the other…) so these kinds of hints are really helpful! glad you had a good lesson (but boo about the nasty weather)

  3. I’m cold just looking at those pictures. I have a similar left hand issue, and I repeatedly asked myself last night while riding, what is my left hand doing? More often that not, the answer was “something stupid and useless.” Habits are SO HARD to break.

  4. I Broke the Connection. This could be a title for a dance post as well! I’m learning tango and it’s all about the connection. When riding I keep my wrists straight, but I try to have light hands which really translates into I don’t keep my fingers closed on the reins enough and they grow incrementally longer and longer. Hang in there with the weather! It’s bound to change soon.

  5. Isn’t it such a great feeling when their canter comes together? I totally understand that sometimes you just hear it a different way and all of a sudden your brain gets it. Hope that works for your wrists!

  6. L. Williams is right – seems like there’s always some pretzel-ing happening to my body! I’m so glad your trainer found the right words for you, though.

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