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09:24am 21/04/2006
  dunno if you guys have seen this yet or not. but here it is. 10 points if you can guess what it's a picture of.


+2 free rides | tack up a pony+

01:49pm 25/03/2006

oooooooo.... i was the first person to see it! check it out. it's pretty impressive.

+tack up a pony+

posting this here because i don't have a more appropriate facet of lj to post it in 
01:03pm 19/02/2006
  **10 YEARS AGO***

How old were you?: 9
What school year were you in? 3rd or 4th grade
Where did you go to school? thornton creek
Where did you work? nowhere
Where did you live? with my parents in the outer suburbs
Where did you hang out? travis's house, erica bivens house, heather balon's house, tara something's house, my room.
What was your hairstyle? long, flat, slightly greeasy...
Did you wear braces? nope, but i had a retainer
Did you wear glasses? not yet.
Who was your best friend? erica bivens and heather balon and tara something
Who was your boyfriend/girlfriend? Hah!
Who was your celebrity crush? i didn't even know that they existed at that point
Who was your regular-person crush? Leo Oteza... oddly enough he's the younger brother of my ex's best friend's girl friend...
How many piercings did you have? none
How many tattoos did you have? none
What was your favorite band? fucking enya
What was your biggest fear? umm... i dunno... living...
Had you smoked a cigarette yet? no.
Had you gotten drunk or high yet? goodness, no
Had you driven yet? my plan at that point was to never drive but to ride horses every where...
Had you had sex yet? fuck no.

***5 YEARS AGO***

How old were you? 14
What school year were you in? high school freshman
Where did you go to school? old pill hill aka northville high school
Where did you work? the barn and at D+M
Where did you live? my parent's house
Where did you hang out? all the punk rock kids: joe, phil, steve, jon, ross, janine, janie, emma, daisy, and travis of course, and the barn people.
what was your hairstyle? short as shit, any colour on the spectrum barring yellow and black (not on the spectrum, but oh well) and spiked...
Did you wear braces? no.
Did you wear glasses? Yes!
Who was your best friend? janie maybe? travis? phil? I didn't really have one...
Who was your celebrity crush? i was still thankfully amish
How many Piercings did you have? just my first hole
How many tattoos did you have? None.
What was your favorite band? rancid like whoa
What was your biggest fear? That I would sell out
had you smoked a cigarette yet? just one hit, and my lungs ached for days
Had you gotten drunk/high yet? yup.. i got stoned before i smoked a ciggarette, and let me say, it's much easier on the lungs than cigs...
Had you driven yet? nope... i was still determined to ride my horse everywhere
Had you had sex yet? nope, i'd just managed to fuck up my first hand job...


How old are you? 19
What school year are you in? college sophmore in age, i think I might be a junior in standing...
Where do you go to school? the school of the conceptual art institute of chicago
Where do you live? logan square
Where do you work? the feild museum
Where do you hang out? at school, in my room, with jesse, with andi and connie...
What is your hairstyle now? long, flat, slightly greasy...
Do you wear braces? no
Do you wear glasses? yeah...
Who is your best friend? i have a few of those... at home i have emily, here i have jesse and andi...
Who is your boyfriend/girlfriend? ha!
Who is your celebrity crush? Asano-san all the way.
How many tattoos? None.
How many piercing do you have? 7 only in my ears, but i've been thinking about a facial percing, but mike would kick my ass like whoa and i have glasses so it'd look lame as fuck.
What is your favorite band? right now i've been into pavement, neutral milk hotel, and clinic.
What is your biggest fear: graduating and not having a job and ending up a bum.
Have you smoked a cigarette yet? no, not me... i never smoke unfiltered and have an ash tray sitting by my bed... an ashtray i made in ceramics. hahahaha
Have you gotten drunk or high yet? it's one of my favourite past times...
Have you had sex yet? ahh... have i had sex this year, no. but have i had sex? yes. unfortuantely not this year...

+tack up a pony+

08:40pm 22/12/2005
  Something is fucked up with my account...

I've been getting complaints from members about all the god shit posted on here... I just can't see it on the natures page... maybe it's on the Natures friends page?

Anyway... The point is, NO FUCKING GOD SHIT IS ALLOWED IN THIS JOURNAL. I'm sorry If I've offended anyone, but my horse can take a shit on baby jesus for all I care. I created this journal to talk about horses, not jesus... it's cool if you like god and all that shit, but as long as you don't post about him in this journal, then cool.

so all in all.... any religious posts are out. by religious i mean i don't give a fuck what religion it is, i don't want it here.

If the religious shit continues, then I'm removing the perpetrators... even if it's my best friend (emily: no god shit please, i mean I know you're having a torrid love affair with him, but we can gossip later)!

+2 free rides | tack up a pony+

06:48pm 18/11/2005
  ahhhh... hahahahaha

I can't really say this anywhere else, or I'll get in sooooooo much trouble... but...

I'm moving out! (yeah, that's means I'll be moving in with Zissou, Isyemille, and lucy) for all of you who don't know, zissou is one of my best friends her (not as close as andi and connie) and is something of a prick. he also looks like Orlando Bloom except not gay and less like a plaster cast of a human. He's going to be coming home with me soon.. I'll be bringing him out to the barn, yes. And he's a pretty fucking good kisser (not that I do much of that with him)... so, um... Eat it! hahahaha...

I'm totally into this guy... micheal.. i can't post a picture of him on here... but copy and paste this link, it'll take you too his myspace... or it should.


i'm not going to say much about him, because when things don't work out between us i don't want to get all mopey... i also don't want to get into trouble...

+tack up a pony+

10:51am 17/06/2005
  Hey does anyone know if this : http://www.horse-rider-etc.com/foxhunt/tiestocktie.html is also the correct way to tie a stock tie in dressage? After almost choking myself a few times, I managed to do it...http://www.libertyvillesaddleshop.com/extras/stocktie_print.htm that is also the same way, but without verbal instructions.  

+1 free ride | tack up a pony+

09:26pm 16/05/2005
  I thought this was really sad.
I know a lot of girls enjoyed seeing scout at the stallion expo so I thought I'd pass it on.
I'm probably going to be ridiculed for this later,
but it really does make you think about how quickly things can take a turn for the worse with horses...
I know I'm going to give aris an extra hug next time I'm out.

Just before midnight on April 15, 2005 .. our kind and oh so beloved "Scout The Friesian" danced his way down the Grandest FEI center line to his theme song, "I can only Imagine", with his head held high, making his way, in the purest of gaits, towards that rainbow bridge, where other beloveds have assured us they will gallop out to welcome him, and bestow on him, his very own ..."WINGS OF LOVE", for he has already earned them here on this earth.

+1 free ride | tack up a pony+

06:01pm 14/05/2005
  BARN CAMPOUT IS JUNE 16. I will be putting up a sign up sheet for food/tents soon. There will be an age limit (example- no one under 12 is allowed to sleep over) I think we set down a rule similar to this last year. Any ideas on how old you have to be to attend?  

+2 free rides | tack up a pony+

found this...read it! 
12:16pm 05/05/2005
  The Dressage Rider's Survival Guide: Memoirs of a Struggling Dressage Rider
by Margaret A. Odgers, Half Halt Press, 2004

[Excerpt From Chapter Two: Your Journey Begins]

The First Lesson to be Learned

Pulling on the reins implies the use of a backward action of the hands which is always, under any cir***stances, fatal…"
Henry Wynmalen, Dressage: A Study of the Finer Points of Riding, page 228

Teaching you the First Lesson to be Learned is why your first trainer will not be your last trainer. It doesn’t matter if your first trainer is a really great trainer. As you begin Dressage you will be quickly overwhelmed by how difficult it is. Given the lack of the all important culling process, you will inevitably become convinced that your First (but Not Last) Trainer must be wrong. It’s only human nature.

You see, the very first lesson you will learn in dressage is that everything that goes wrong is the rider’s fault. This is different from any other form of riding you’ve done – when one generally thought of the horse as either getting or not getting the message. Sure, you needed to perfect a few skills, like posting to the trot, but in these other disciplines, you were never considered intrinsically incorrect for the get go.

Depending upon the effectiveness of your Trainer, this point must be driven home like a stake through your idealistic heart. Your seat, your hands, your leg position – all together – contribute to driving your poor horse crazy.

Conversely, everything that is good and right about your riding is directly the result of the innate generosity of your horse, for overcoming your many obvious riding flaws. In the case of a new Dressage rider, if the horse happens to “get it” it was purely an accident.

This is the first, yet the most difficult lesson to absorb. It is a subtle thing – you think you have accepted it, only to find fatal arrogance will creep back into your training at various stages. In fact, you can anticipate teetering between soaring conceit and utter despair throughout your Journey.

As one starts dressage lessons, and this message because apparent, you are at the beginning of watching your self-esteem crumble. It is not that this lesson is necessarily incorrect or meant to be cruel, it’s simply that dressage, as discussed, is a lifelong Journey and by definition, after a lifetime, you still won’t get it right. This is why to correctly learn Dressage the correct way, one goes to the Spanish Riding School of Vienna.

If it’s any consolation, your First (but Not Last) Trainer will not be surprised when you eventually abandon her. You see, this Trainer is the one with unenviable task of introducing you to Dressage. Whether good, bad, or indifferent, this Trainer’s task is a difficult and thankless one. Unfortunately, given the chaotic state of Dressage training in the United States, you will no doubt go through many trainers before truly accepting the first truth of Dressage: It’s all you’re fault. (“When you can take the pebble from my hand, grasshopper….” says Master Po to Kwai Chang Cain.)

To think you gave up trail riding for this punishment?

In Search of ON THE BIT

"A horse "held in shape" by his rider is only posturing in a seemingly correct outline, usually for the benefit of the inexperienced observers."
Charles de Kunffy, Dressage World, Famous Quotes, www.dressageworld.com

And why, you might ask, is this First Lesson to be Learned so difficult? The reason is you fundamentally misunderstand the concept of Dressage, which is the development of self-carriage in the horse through the perfect seat of the rider. You will be sidetracked from that objective because you will be desperately seeking ON THE BIT. Deep down, in your heart of hearts, all you really, really want is to get your horse to arch his head and neck – to be ON THE BIT – just like in all the pictures.

This is called ON THE BIT riding and has nothing whatsoever to do with Dressage. Beginning Dressage Riders are obsessed with ON THE BIT riding. You believe that is what Dressage is all about.

Done correctly, we ride our horse from back to front. This means we engage the hindquarters, through our seat and legs, and bring the energy up into the head and neck, whereby at some magical point the horse will arch his neck in the classic Dressage frame. The hands merely regulate the energy generated from the hind end. That is riding back to front. Simple – ha!

The reality is somewhat different for struggling new Dressage riders. We can’t see what’s going on behind us – we can only obsess endlessly over what is in front – therefore it is simply irresistible to use our hands to get our horse ON THE BIT. Our rides become a grueling torment, where we yank and pull and kick, all to get our horses to arch their head and neck. It doesn’t work. Hence, our self esteem continues its downward slide.

Your First (but not Last) Horse

The quick answer... and I know this is cheating on a tough question.. is don't put green on green. You're a beginner in dressage. Your horse is a beginner in dressage. In that situation, every beginner ruins their first horse…
SmithsonLM “And yet another question about contact” 8/28/03, UDBB

The reason your first Dressage horse will not be your last Dressage horse is the same reason why your first Trainer was not your last Trainer. You are referred to as “green on green” – neither of you has a clue!

Again, it is helpful to look at the German model here. Beginning Dressage riders in Germany are started on appropriately trained school horses. In the United States, there is no such thing as appropriately trained school horses.

As Americans, we tend to think of ourselves as the independent type and quite clever to boot. We don’t need start on some old, moth-eaten school horse when we already own a perfectly fine horse. All we are really trying to do is get our horse ON THE BIT. What’s the big deal? So, we think, we will take a few lessons on our perfectly fine Non-Dressage horse, and learn ON THE BIT.

It quickly becomes apparent, however, that our perfectly fine Non-Dressage horse just isn’t getting this ON THE BIT thing. It becomes very discouraging to take lesson after lesson after lesson, and still, no ON THE BIT. Stupid horse, you think, because you haven’t fully absorbed the “First Lesson to be Learned” – please re-read that section.

What’s worse, your First (but not Last) Trainer will get on your horse at any point, and get your stupid horse ON THE BIT, while explaining, in unexplainable jargon, that ON THE BIT isn’t really the true objective of Dressage and that you still have not absorbed the “First Lesson to be Learned”. This Trainer will throw out obscure terms like lightness and thoroughness and schwung! You won’t be listening. You are too busy staring at your horse’s head to ascertain if he’s ON THE BIT. And you yank and crank and kick and…….

Soon, you are despairing of your First (but Not Last) Horse. You are becoming suitably humiliated at every lesson, and eventually come to the decision that you need to get a horse more appropriate for your purposes – in other words – a horse trained to go ON THE BIT.

It is incredibly bittersweet to part with your First (but Not Last) Horse. He was a great guy, just not capable of ON THE BIT. Your First (but Not Last) Horse, on the other hand, is relieved to be changing hands. At this point, he is the finest shape of his lifetime. He has been schooled five days a week, and is in fighting trim. His feet are perfectly balanced, his back has been massaged and his teeth in perfect order. Never in his life has he been so fussed over. He will happily go off to the Hunter/Jumper barn with a rider who is in awe of his skill of bending into corners and getting the correct lead and doesn’t care in the least about ON THE BIT.

The Dressage Rider's Survival Guide: Memoirs of a Struggling Dressage Rider
by Margaret A. Odgers, Half Halt Press, 2004

+tack up a pony+

hmm... only problem is where to put him... would do well at kathy's.... 
12:32pm 25/04/2005
  Approved Home Only. 17 year old 16.1 hand bay with star TB gelding. Legs
of iron. Must find him a kind loving home. He is very sound, big powerful
mover and big bodied. Sweet disposition, in your pocket, lover bunny. Was
raced until he was 8 years old - stakes winner. After that life he was
owned by one person who hunter paced him, showed him in the lower levels of
dressage, and jumped him lightly. He needs an experienced rider because he
can be a little hot and is quite powerful. Not mean, just energetic.
Excellent to clip, bathe, tie, truck, excellent for farrier and vet.
currently barefoot - just had a trim. In heavy work should have shoes, but
has excellent feet. Does not get along with geldings but can be turned out
with any mare. This horse has been on my property for 8 years and I know
his history pretty well. He'd be a lot of fun for someone to ride and enjoy
and he loves attention - all that he can get.

Sorry, no online pictures at this time.

Located in Woodstock CT.

Cindy Downs
(860) 974-1088

+3 free rides | tack up a pony+

04:44pm 11/04/2005
  this could help too!  

+tack up a pony+

04:39pm 11/04/2005
  HOLY SHIT! emmaliegh, i just solved all our problems!

holy fuck! everyone needs to look at this! I know I, and someone else in this community that i know well, have some problems with chafing! this is it! i want to try it so bad.... but that'd be worse, asking my parents to get it for me than asking them to buy me condoms....

+tack up a pony+

04:17pm 11/04/2005
  I knew this girl in high school, her little brother was killed last night. look where he died!



clearly, everyone should be a little more cautious when they're riding to shroter park and such. especially steph, because aside from the fact that she's awesome, she rides my baby! (steph, don't care where you ride to, just don't die in the process!)

+tack up a pony+

not in the top 1% 
12:16am 28/03/2005
  i have to laugh when someone brags about their "appendix Qh/Dutch warmblood Stallion." it's called a Grade at that point dude....  

+tack up a pony+

09:40pm 11/03/2005
  mmm... this makes my life sooo much easier, and it'll make yours easier also  

+2 free rides | tack up a pony+

09:19am 10/03/2005
Lining up together

Aragorn (rides to the black gate) and Breggo (though he doesnt really ride breggo to the black gate- lauren was set on having Monty be breggo :) )

The Witch King rides with sword drawn...
(Her horse isn't really black, he's actually chestnut- we painted him for the show)

I didn't know Aragorn and Eomer were twins!!
(Heather on Finney as Eomer, Lauren on Monty as Aragorn)

The Witch King sure likes to intimidate pedestrians...

lined up again, from left to right...
Nicole and Bonfire as Faramir (ranger), Kay on Dodger as Witch King, Heather on Finney as Eomer and Firefoot, Me on Aris as Merry and Stybba (he was very patient with the browband that kept slipping over his eye), Lauren on Monty as Aragorn and Breggo (black gate), and Chelsea on Lahna as Arwen...
(The under age girls all had to wear helmets.... phooo)

Me and Aris. It sucks you can't see the detail on my shield.

Me with a dent in my "leather"... Oh well.. fun foam can only do so much- especially when you're in a saddle that's over 100 years old..

Close up of Heather's Helmet and ramshakle spear...

Witch King detail... she was damned scary.

Lauren on Monty... I really liked making her costume. Maybe the most (because it was easier than eomers! hah)

Slightly blurry photo of me and aris... he was so patient with the whole thing, I couldn't have asked for more from him (except an arching neck and prancing floaty trot around the arena as the audience oogled at us hahaha jk)


+1 free ride | tack up a pony+

10:59am 28/02/2005
  anyone who rides should read this site on bridles! over and over and over until you can't stand it anymore!  

+tack up a pony+

11:42am 17/02/2005


My name is Jenny.  I'm a 26 and I love classical dressage and have been riding pretty much my whole life.  I worked at an academic classical dressage barn for five years and I have fallen in love with this art of riding.  Its cool to find others who love this form of riding.  I appreciate your lj. Have a great day!


+3 free rides | tack up a pony+

08:50pm 14/02/2005
  OBVIOUSLY.... lol

You are Shadowfax! You have no free time cause
Gandlaf is always bugging you to take him
somewhere asap. But hey you're the lord of all
horses so you can handle the fame!

Which LOTR Horse Are You?
brought to you by Quizilla

+1 free ride | tack up a pony+

04:42am 14/02/2005
  Endo-tapping is essentially a method of tappemente or percussion massage.
JP Giacomini's system www.equus.net offers several different lengths of
whips with soft, rubber balls well-attached to the end.  You tap the horse -
not necessarily rhythmicly - on all parts of the body.  You tap, first
lightly, then more firmly as necessary, until your horse releases the
tension in his body, shown by dropping the nose to the ground.  You move
from muscle group to muscle group achieving this response from every area of
the horse.

I've found that the tapping appears to have a cumulative property.  The more
you do this, the more the horses relax, and they relax sooner in the
session.  The response is actually programed into the nervous system and can
be accessed by any tapping on the body.  While riding, if you suddenly get
into a "situation", tapping on the withers with fingertips will very often
defuse your horse's reaction.

I have used this on a number of horses now and consider it a very important
tool in my trainer's box.  A nervous young filly will practically fall
asleep on her feet near things she was spooking from.  An abused Pervian
Paso will go from a board-stiff body and tuned out brain to soft muscle
tone, licking lips, and looking at you to see what is happening.  A very
excited young stallion in the breeding pen will suddenly tune in and listen
to his handler.

I had, myself, intended to post about endo-tapping for the horse in the
"going dog" discussion.  This poor creature would likely benefit very
greatly from this approach, since it starts on the ground but can then
easily be continued from the saddle.

If you email JP privately, I'm sure he will be happy to send you his
articles explaining in detail how to use the method.  It is very important
that  you NOT STOP TAPPING until you get the head-down response.  The horse
will go thru stages of ignoring or trying to avoid the tapping at first.
You simply keep asking them to stand as still as they can, without making
too big a deal of it, and follow with the tapping; sometimes firmer
sometimes softer, but continuing regardless of any antics offered.

In my family, we've come to use this on the people too.  It is a very
soothing, relaxing, and enjoyable feeling.  Our homeschool evaluator was
astounded at my son's presentation and planned to try it on a student with

Last note, don't wait for the formal tools.  The butt of a dressage whip, a
dowel rod, or even your hand, or that drum stick all make passable tools to
get started;  and I would get started today.  I have to admit that the long
dressage whip with the ball is wonderfully convenient, tho.  I can reach
anywhere on the horse, I can ride with it and use it as both whip and
tapping tool.  I also use it in my liberty work since the horse can easily
see and track the ball on the end.  It allows me to tap for commands in a
wonderfully gentle way for a variety of tricks.  Now if the stallion would
only stop trying to grab and play with the ball on the end it would be a
perfect world LOL

+tack up a pony+

01:03pm 31/01/2005
  Layer One- You :
* you: Emily
* Middle name: Margaret
* Birth time: 12:50pm
* Birthplace: Winchester, Tennessee
* Last place you traveled: ...ohio?
* Eye Color: blue
* Nail Color: clearish
* Height: about 5'2"
* Zodiac Sign: virgo

Layer two- describe :
* Your heritage: Irish Welsh Scottish German Native American
* The shoes you wore today: birkenstock sandals
* Your hair: um... tawny brown?
* Your weakness: hygiene
* Your perfect pizza: artichoke pesto!

Layer Three- what is :
* Your most overused phrase on aim: fuck
* Your thoughts first waking up: do I have enough spare time today to ride?
* Your current worry: moving, and the possibility of going to court against my landlord
* Your plans for today: running errands, signing a new lease, packing
* Your plans for tomorrow: class: class, catching up in philosophy
* Your best physical feature: I have no idea. eyes?
* Your bedtime: 12-1

Layer Four- you prefer :
* sunrise or sunset: sunrise
* gore or horror: horror
* stripes or polka dots: stripes
* Planes or trains: trains?
* Boxers or briefs: boxers
* Pools or hot tubs: pools

Layer Five- do you :
* Do you think you've been in love: ayup
* Type w/ your fingers on homerow: always
* Like to take baths: only if i'm sick
* Get motion sickness: sometimes
* Like talking on the phone: not terribly
* Like thunderstorms: definately
* Play an instrument: jack of all trades, master of none.
* Workout: riding!
* Like reading: fo sho

Layer Six- favorite :
* Body part: hands
* Kind of fruit: strawberries
* Music to fall asleep to: i cant listen to music to fall asleep, it keeps me awake.
* Time of the day: 11am
* Car: Saab 900 S (or the 900 turbo)
* Number: 3
* Thing to do: ride
* Horror movie: dawn of the dead (2004)
* Colors: i think i like them all.

Layer Eight- the future :
* Age you hope to be married: 26 or 27
* Numbers and Names of Children: one or two.. sebastian and juniper
* Describe your Dream Wedding: hehe.. it's undescribable
* How do you want to die: ...i don't.
* What do you want to be when you grow up: older
* What country would you most like to visit: spain - the iberian penninsula specifically

+tack up a pony+

02:27pm 23/01/2005

Okay i took this from my journal so some of it may not make sense, but i figured more people would see it if i put it up here.

Read more...Collapse )


+3 free rides | tack up a pony+

this is excellent!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 
01:49pm 22/01/2005
  Hello, I am in the same position as your owner. 50
something unfit female riding a green broke hot TB

I too have struggled with body/balance issues. One of
the first epiphanies I had was when I finally
understood what a soft hand was. For months I worked
while riding on soft hands, but it wasn't until I
practised holding the steering wheel of my car betwwen
thumbs and forefinger and made sure that I lifted my
arms so that there was almost an upward force on my
fingers that I stopped pulling back on my horses face.

Then I decided to play another game. Every so often I
put my hands in the riding position and gently touch
the edge of a table with the knuckles. I got so that
I could do the Twist
and shimmy around without losing that fragile
connection with the the edge of the table. Next I
did it holding my hands 1/2 inch away from the edge.
That really taught me about soft elbows and where my
hand actually was in relation to what my body was

Another thing that helped my catching reflexes (for
body balance) was to stand on one foot while doing
something else. Things like brushing my teeth,
loading the dishwasher
stirring pots, even that old stand by patting your
head and rubbing your stomach at the same time help
the brain to coordinate the body.

I am working still on maintaining body alignment
inspite of what my horse does and maintaining rein
length as well as leg position.

Anyway I give permission for anyone to ROTFL but it
has worked for me

+tack up a pony+

12:39am 19/01/2005
  MIKE GOT AN OFFER! AS IN, SOMEONE NEW WANTS HIM TO DO CLINICS! HERE'S THE BIGGEST PART!!!!!!!! IN NEW GUINEA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! HOLY SHIT! I'M SO CRAZY EXCITED. if he doesn't go....i'm going to be so pissed!  

+2 free rides | tack up a pony+

i found this in a forum, i thought it was good 
03:51pm 17/01/2005
  If you ride a horse at the walk, your right seatbone will come up as the right hindleg is "passing the 6" (if you think of the anticlockwise "circle" that the hindfoot describes); in other words, it's on the ground and thrusts upward and forward. The left seatbone comes up if the left hindleg thrusts. There is usually quite a bit of swing in the horse's hips when walking downhill; probably more than on the flat because the horse would need to angle / flex his joints in the hind quite a bit to compensate for the slope and most ordinary horses might not have learnt that yet (I have never ridden a well trained classical Grand Prix horse downhill but I suspect there would be less swing in the hips and more tuck in under of the legs??). The amount of swing on the flat varies from horse to horse and the amount of ... engagement / thrust (upward/forward?) / activation of belly muscles and back (sorry, I don't know which one).

When riding well, you are looking for a marching walk, not a sloppy stroll. I read somewhere about "energisches Abfussen", German for "hindleg leaving the ground energetically" (is there a better term?) which is exactly what happens when you are marching.

Self test:
1. Walk like a supermodel and swing your hips
2. March like a soldier and activate your core muscles (the collected type, not the extended striding type; think of musical kur); can you feel how the toes, ankles, knees and back are working? It feels a bit like a stick bobbing up and down inside me but not much hip swing.
3. Walk like a supermodel but activate your core muscles at the same time. It feels to me like something slows something else down and it becomes awkward.

To refine my question: is a lot of swing in the hips of the horse and a lot of "lateral slope" in my seatbones (which usually makes me collapse in my waist) an indication for the horse not using his belly muscles? Classical riding always talks about the swinging back, not the swinging hips. Can somebody shed light on this because now I am totally confused.

+tack up a pony+

05:38pm 13/01/2005
  Mike Riders Unite!!!! please everyone!!! register on horsecity.com and help us battle these people who are acusing us of "jabbing" our horses mouths when we pop them!!!!! help!!! let us defeat the evil ones!!!!  

+tack up a pony+

11:40am 03/12/2004
Ten ways you know that Martha Stewart has been in your barnyard

10.There is a potpourri pomander hanging from each halter.
9.The Horses hooves have been cut with pinking shears.
8.The horse treats are all stored in McCoy crocks.
7.The manure fork has been decorated with raffia.
6.The tell tale lemon slice in each new water bucket.
5.You find carrot and apple treats stamped with copper cookie cutters and decorated with royal icing using #2 rossette tip.
4.Mane and tail hair has been collected and and put into wire baskets for nesting material for the birds.
3.A seasonally appropriate grapevine wreath adorns the front of each stall.
2.Your horse goes outside naked and comes in wearing a Thyme colored virgin wool hand knitted blanket with matching leg wraps.
1.The manure pile has been sculpted into swans.

+1 free ride | tack up a pony+

09:45am 25/11/2004
  Happy Turkey Day Everybody!!!!!!!!!!  

+tack up a pony+

10:14pm 21/11/2004
  // Ver. 1

--Name: Emily
--Birthdate: September 7th
--Birthplace: Winchester,Tennessee
--Current Location: Ypsilanti, MI
--Eye color: Blue
--Hair color: sand
--Height: 5 2
--Righty or Lefty: Right
--Zodiac Sign: Virgo
--Innie or Outtie: Innie, definately.

// Ver. 2 - Describe

--Your Heritage: Scottish, Irish, Welsh, Powhatan
--The Shoes You Wore Today: Tall riding boots
--Your Weakness: sad movies
--Your Fears: losing someone important
--Your Perfect Pizza: cheese, with lots of sauce
--One thing You'd Like to Achieve: .... a degree in 4 years. hah

// Ver.3

--What is your most overused phrase?: fuck, definately
--Your first thoughts waking up: holy crap, are my birds going at it again?
--The first feature you notice in the opposite sex: either eyes, or hair, depending on my vantage point.
--Your best physical features: my height
--Your bedtime: whenever i feel like it
--Greatest Fear: we've already gone over this.
--Your Most Missed Memory: playing teaparty in my room in badaxe while the guy down the street played bagpipe

// Ver.4

--Pepsi or Coke: pepushi
--McDonald's or Burger King: McDonald's
--Single or Group Dates: depends on the group.
--Adidas or Nike: birkenstock! lol
--Chocolate or Vanilla: Chocolate, totally
--Cappucino or coffee: cappucino
--Boxers or Briefs: briefs for me, boxer briefs for him.

// Ver.5

--Do you smoke?: never
--Cuss?: always
--Sing Well?: in my dreams
--Do you think you've been in love?: yes.
--Want to go to college: i should hope so seeing as i'm a year from graduating from college!
--Like High School?: my god no, i hated everything except the art department
--Want to get married?: if it seems like a good idea later in life
--Type with fingers on the right keys: always. home keys for life!
--Get motion sickness: nah
--Think you're attractive: I don't think i'm ugly.
--Think you're a health freak: gosh, i dont know.
--Get along with parents: yep
--Like Thunderstorms: I love riding in them... it's so much fun

// Ver.6 - in the past month, did/have you:

--Consumed Alchohol: nope
--Made Out: haha
--Gone On Date: yup
--Go To the Mall: for dinner, yeah
--Eaten an entire box of Oreos: over the course of a few weeks, and with the help of justin, kelly and dave.
--Eaten Sushi: Yup!
--Gone Skating: nope
--Made Homemade cookies: just like 15 minutes ago!
--Been in Love: yup
--Gone Skinny Dipping: nope
--Dyed your hair: nope
--Stolen Anything: stolen a glance!

// Ver.7

--Have you ever played a game that required removal of clothing? actually, no.
--Been trashed or completely intoxicated: nope, not really.
--Been caught "doing something"?: um.. i'm not sure i know what this question is getting at
--Been Called a "Tease": nope
--Shoplifted?: err... long ago.

// Ver.8

--Age you hope to be married?: eventually, if it's right.
--Numbers and Names of Children?: one or two. sebastian and june
--Describe your dream wedding: somewhere quiet, with a string quartet playing bach :)
--How do you want to die?: i'd like to have a little bit of a warning, but not much.
--Where do you want to go to college: ... EMU.
--What do you want to be when you grow up?: me, only older
--Where would you most like to visit?: Spain, the Iberian horse preserve! with my camera!

+tack up a pony+

09:26am 30/10/2004
  does anyone have any halloween costume ideas for me???? i'm going trick or treating and i don't know what to be!!!!!!!  

+3 free rides | tack up a pony+

09:00am 09/09/2004
  Okay, who knows how I could go about getting a new tack box?
and who knows how much it would cost?
and who wants to give me one for free?

+3 free rides | tack up a pony+

09:54am 19/08/2004
  somebody MUST buy Harley! that horse was awesome. if cindy and i could have had two horses, i would have gotten mattie and cindy would have gotten harley. he's the sweetest thing ever, and he's an awesome jumper. really pretty also. the lady selling him is really nice too.  

+tack up a pony+

08:29pm 17/08/2004
  So who's looking for a horse!?! omg, this horse that we looked at before we saw mattie, harley, that i loved, and we would have gotten him if we hadn't liked mattie better, is for sale again!!!!! he's a palomino quarter horse, $4,000, amazing jumper!!! he has the best bascule i have ever seen in my entire life!!!!!!!! he's on dreamhorse, listed as canta be lucky, so look at him!!!!!! someone buy him!!!!!!  

+tack up a pony+

02:42pm 10/08/2004
mood: ecstatic
WE'RE GOING TO BUY MISS IVORY TOWER (Hope)!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I'M SO EXCITED!!!!!!!!!!!!!! my dad's doing the insurance today, so hopefully she can come before CDC, but she might have to come next week.

+1 free ride | tack up a pony+

08:36pm 31/07/2004
mood: calm
Does anyone even write in this anymore???

+1 free ride | tack up a pony+

12:17pm 28/07/2004

+1 free ride | tack up a pony+

11:35pm 25/07/2004
  Hey everyone, I made a community called nls_poets. it's for everyone who likes writing poems, short stories, etc! Please join! And maybe someone could do a layout for me?  

+tack up a pony+

07:45pm 23/07/2004
  If you're riding at Waterloo this weekend, post your ride times so I know when to come and watch!  

+2 free rides | tack up a pony+

I have a question... 
02:08pm 21/07/2004
  Hey does anyone have a picture of Jasper that I could use? the only one i have of him is extremely far away and i wanted one for meghan's birthday present...if anyone does have one and is willing to share...email it to meh pleaassee! xoxb_a_t_t_yxox@yahoo.com THANKS BUNCHES!!  

+tack up a pony+

01:21am 21/07/2004
  two guys asked me out in the same night. i turned them both down. i told them the truth, they take up time i need to spend with my horse.  

+tack up a pony+