Who Is On My Horse
 By Polo the Weirdo   •   18th Jun 2013   •   3,478 views   •   6 comments
Have you ever ripped the head off one doll to pop it onto another, or forced a puzzle piece to fit where it doesn't belong? We all know the feeling, looking at something so familiar; yet thinking ‘that doesn't look right’. That is the feeling I get when I see somebody else on my horse.

In a way, a horse and rider are like two puzzle pieces. Every rider will have horses they fit with and horses that they don’t, just like every horse will not fit with every rider. Sometimes a good rider on a good horse will produce poor results, while a more mediocre pair will fly to victory time and again. For the logical mind, this is baffling, but when a person looks at the bigger picture, equestrian sport is about so much more than the ability of the horse, or that of the rider. In the end, it’s the partnership between the two that matters.

Who Is On My Horse

Countless times I've watched good, well renowned riders get onto my horse, then get off minutes later telling me things like, ‘This animal is useless’, ‘He’ll never make a jumper’, ‘Sell him’, ‘Bury him’, and the classic, ‘If this horse ever jumps 1,30m, I’ll eat my hat.’

That horse was Bronze. And when he’s carrying me safely around a course of big cross country jumps, or flying around to win a jump off, I don’t care how useless anybody once thought he was, or how useless they thought I was, either. Somehow, the two of us made it. And now, even when I watch novice riders get onto Bronze, not only does he do his job, but he helps them out too. It’s a heart-warming sight, watching somebody else get the same joy from your horse that you do.

But when it comes to ‘sharing riders’, not every horse is as willing as Bronze. Some horses – mares in particular – just tend to be ‘one person horses’. They will accept one rider, and once the partnership is formed, nobody else will be able to get the same performance from that horse. Take my mare Finola for example; she is quirky as they come – grabbing the bit, chucking her head up, turning sideways, fly leaping and even bucking at times – but as tricky as she can be, I barely feel it. Between the two of us, we have an understanding, a connection, so each tricky, fussy round feels somehow seamless. She may not be the most orthodox of creatures, but she does things her own way, and I respect that. Some horses you argue with, demand more from, but others – like Finola – all you have to do is show a bit of tact, let them do their job, and help them out as much as you can on the way.

When I see somebody else on that mare, no matter how beautifully they ride her, I honestly wonder how she gets over a single low jump. Yet when I’m on her back facing a big course, I feel invincible, because I know that she won’t let me down. She doesn't have to be an expensive warmblood with top bloodlines to be the perfect partner for me. Even up against impossible odds, that horse tries her heart out, and we've come out on top time and again because of it.

What’s my point in all this, you ask? Well, my point is a simple one, and one that I believe I've made a number of times.

It’s not about the horse.
It’s not about the rider, the trainer, the tack or the facilities.
It isn't about any of that. When it comes down to the wire, there’s only one thing that makes the difference between a mediocre performance, and one you’ll remember for a lifetime.

When you've got that special bond with your horse, when you’re of one heart and one mind; it doesn't matter what the odds are against you. When the pieces start to fit, nothing can stand in your way.

Who Is On My Horse

Who Is On My Horse

Who Is On My Horse

Who Is On My Horse
Horse News More In This Category:  General      Horse News More From This Author:  Polo the Weirdo
To me, the reason that other riders may not like one persons horse is that the rider on the other persons horse is usually jealous or simply not wanting to cooperate. And not to mention, the owner of the horse doesn't usually want the rider on their horse so they are giving off bad vibes and ragging on the rider... and everything hits the fan.
Jealousy and prejudice (from both sides!) is all I can say when someone gives rude remarks about another persons horse.

Sure, 'special bonds' can make you feel invincible, but that 'bond' is really like a horse respecting the lead mare/stallion of their herd.. if the horse is put with another rider (and the rider is willing to work with the horse) the 'special bond' can easily be replaced.
  Jun 18, 2013  •  4,832 views
Bonds ARE important. Pogo and I are horrible to each other, but when someone else rides him he's just different. Not bad, necessarily, but whenever I watch someone else ride him it's just so, so wrong. Once I was grounded from the barn, and I went a month without seeing Pogo. He took to running through the gate, escaping the farm, stepping on people, and just being a horrid brat. When I cam back he was mad I was MIA for a bit, but now we're find and click as well as ever. He's taught me so much, and I him, and while we don't have a magical "it was an instant click" bond, I'd trust him with my life, and he's proved more trustworthy to me than calmer horses have to other people, simply because it's me and that's who we are.
  Jun 18, 2013  •  4,001 views
Polo the Weirdo  MOD 
I have gained one thing from this article. And that is the knowledge that I seriously need to get new stirrup leathers, shorten my stirrups, and then fix that disgusting lower leg. o_0
I'm a disgrace. XD
  Jun 19, 2013  •  4,069 views
I get the same sort of feeling from my homebred mare, Bella. I'm the only person who's every ridden her consistently, yeah she had a guy break her in, and my mum and a friend have ridden her once, but I just feel like we really click.
In the field, she's friendly enough, but it's only with me that she'll stand and allow me to make a huge fuss of her for hours on end, with other people she'll let them fuss her, but only for a few moments, before popping her head back down to graze. I just get such a great feeling of connection with her, it's really lovely to feel that a horse wants to be with me and wants my attention.
  Jun 19, 2013  •  4,042 views
This has just made me more convinced that Paddy is a secretly a mare...
His very high pitched neigh, his love for another gelding, the way he he tosses his mane back and forth...
and now his grumpiness when I chuck someone else on his back xD

He used to be a nightmare with anyone new, but I sweet-talked a few people at the stables to get on him for me, so he can get used to it. I give some of my friends lessons on him, but he's just not the same horse with them than he is with me. He looks like a total nutcase, rearing, bucking and napping. He does settle down eventually, but they've all found he's very highly strung...rather like a mare D:
  Jun 19, 2013  •  4,069 views
I hate watching other people on angel, angel doesn't even act herself with other people. She shakes her head around, bucks an refuses to jump and i have to hold in the urge to shout at them for not riding her properly ... Vicious circle.
  Jun 20, 2013  •  3,649 views
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