Wednesday 29 March 2017

Q1 Review and Q2 Goals

I can't believe how fast 2017 has been flying by. It's only two days until the end of Q1 so I guess it's time to look at goals already!

2017 Q1 Goal Review

1. Ride in at least two clinics/lessons
Success! - I rode in the clinic with Sandra Feb 25-26, and had two lessons with D, the new local dressage trainer.

2. Be show-ready at Walk-Trot
Success - our walk and trot work are nice these days, it's just canter work than brings out the tension and running. Cleaning up mane and tail were part of this goal originally but that was when I thought I would be competing at the Carrots and Cocktails shows in March/April/May; however, none of those dates ended up working for my schedule. I now won't be showing until the end of May so Kachina is staying wild and wooly a little longer. 

I love riding this trot

3. Get up to at least first canter stage in the progression plan 
Success - I have gotten to the step where I can get a good canter circle. I am still working on the consistency of some of the steps beforehand, but I've also tackled a few steps lower down on the list so all in all I'm where I want to be. 

Proof we can canter

4. Figure out girth and saddle pad/half pad 
Success - after a lot of trial and error I finally settled on a Prolite girth. This new girth and no half pad are working well for us right now, though I am planning to get a saddle fitting done to confirm. 

The search was long, but I found you!

5. Do some desensitization work with plastic bags and/or clippers 
Success - it ended up staying cold until it was too late to clip, so clipping isn't happening this year, but I did some desensitization work with plastic bags. I want to do more of this though. 

I technically succeeded with all of my goals, but it was a basic level of success, not a resounding success deserving of an exclamation mark. A lot of that was because I was out of town for more than 4 weeks this quarter, and didn't get a lot of ride time. I'm hoping to get more barn time in the next quarter and accomplish some bigger goals!

2017 Q2 Goals

1. Ride in at least two clinics/lessons
I think this is a good semi-permanent goal. I have the next clinic with Sandra in May and then I'll have to come up with something for the second. 

2. Organize a dressage show
Eeep! The date has been set for May so this will happen one way or another. This is taking up a decent amount of my time these days. Insurance and judge are arranged. As of today, the location is finally settled (I think, I hope!). It seems like two steps forward, one step back for each thing, but I'm slowly getting there. 

3. Get up to the "good training test patterns" step of the progression plan (with all previous steps completed)
This is a little bit of a stretch, but I think it's doable, plus I want to get there because...

4. Compete at training level in a show or test day and feel like we are worthy of the level
There is a test day in May and a bronze show in June and I want to compete at training level in both. I actually sent in my entry for the June show last week so I'm hoping we can be ready in time! I really struggled with what to put as a goal related to this. First I had "compete at a show" but I figured that was too low of a bar. Then I considered "score over 65%" or "get a ribbon" or "be competitive" but those are all hard because what if the judge tends low with scores? what if we have a great test but completely blow a couple of double coefficient movements? what if the classes are tiny, or massive? Basically, I just want to walk out of my test and read my score card and feel like Kachina and I finally belong at training level. 

5. Do regular test riding
My last horse anticipated like crazy so I could never practice test riding. Kachina is a very different horse though. If I want to show, riding the actual test patterns at home will help us both. I need to make a conscious effort to do this every week or so. 

6. Get saddle fitting done
This is sort of from my half-pad debate that was a goal from last quarter. Instead of spending a bunch of time figuring out half pads, I'm going to get my saddle professionally fitted. The root reason I'm worried about a half pad at all is because I'm worried that my saddle doesn't fit Kachina as well as I think it does, so time to address that. 

7. Spend time on ground work
Riding is great, but I also need to designate some time to improving Kachina's ground manners.

8. Relax and enjoy my horse
Work is crazy and stressful these days weeks months. Planning a show is a lot of work too, To safeguard my sanity I need to remember to just have fun sometimes. If that means that some of the above goals don't get met, that's okay. Hopefully this will mean some fun trail rides if the weather cooperates.  

I want to see this view again soon


  1. Congratulations on meeting your goals. Your next quarter goals sound like good stretch goals. I can't wait to hear about the show!

    1. Thanks! I figure the show will give me good blog fodder, but I think I will wait until after the fact to publish most stuff

  2. Look at all that success! If I lived closer I would definitely come support your show :)

    1. I think the amount of success is misleading, it's more that I set easy goals for Q1 =P

    2. If those were easy goals, then I'm a serious slacker ;)

  3. Yay for successfully meeting goals! I think I need to scrap mine for 2017 and start over, haha. Looks like you've set some really good Q2 goals as well, looking forward to following along as you smash those too!

    1. I think my Q2 goals are substantially harder than my Q1 goals were, but if I meet them I will be thrilled!

  4. So many exciting goals coming up!! Ambitious but totally doable, I like it!! Good luck with the show - both organizing and riding!

  5. Ambitious but doable is what I was going for! Thanks for the luck, I may need it haha