The weekend saw Tommy and I head off to Pittsworth Show, for a crack at the 1.00m and 1.10m showjumping classes. It was Tommy’s first full on ag show, so i wasn’t sure what to expect from him, but despite dump trucks and bobcats in the warm up arena, the woodchop right next to our ring, a giant purple jumping castle about 10 m from the arena fence and all the other sights and sounds of a country ag show, he was calm, focussed and did two really good rounds, with just a couple of rails.
On viewing my video (thanks Q3!), I could clearly see why he took the rails. I had held him for too long off a turn onto a combination, panicked when i saw a bad distance and chased. I got him too close and he didn’t have room to jump out of it. If I had of just softened and trusted him, he would no doubt have had a better chance of getting himself out of strife and leaving the rails up. Still so much to learn!!
Hindsight is a wonderful thing, and although some people may see it as a negative, I believe honest self analysis and reflection after every ride is a very important tool for every rider.
Nothing disappoints me more than hearing riders blame their horses, judges, external factors, other competitors etc etc for poor performance, when a lot of the time, it was pilot error. It is only natural to be disappointed when things don’t go to plan, but it is so important that the rider can look honestly at the whole picture, in order to improve for next time.
A useful self analysis tool I learnt years ago is a SWOT analysis. Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats. It is a really good framework to constructively analyse training and performance, and identify changes for next time. This is a great idea after every ride and every competition, and keeping a training diary is an excellent way to monitor progress.
Being honest with ourselves and holding ourselves accountable, both in the saddle and out, can sometimes be a bitter pill to swallow, but without it we stop growing as a person and will find many areas in our lives at a standstill.
Own your training, own your preparation, own your performance, own your mistakes, take responsibility and work hard to improve. There will be no limit to what you can achieve!!
Happy riding………… 🙂
p.s. Video is in my media files, if anyone wants a look.