What is our regular training week like?
There are certainly as many ways to rhythm the week as there are horses with their owners.
Art is now eight years old, so he is no longer a young horse. Therefore, we can train a bit more seriously, than with a youngster. Our week is built around slightly different themes, depending on the competition calendar. Usually we have lessons twice a week - once a showjumping lesson and once a dressage lesson. Sometimes we take a third lesson, in which case we do pole work. Few times a month my coach rides Art. I think it’s a good idea for every hobby horse to be ridden by a professional from time to time. My trainer also often notices if a horse is in need of a massage or something else - she is good with listening to how the horse feels.
So, from the seven days of the week, we do showjumping on one day and dressage on one day with our trainer. Art has one to two days off, when his only duty is to chill out in the paddock and enjoy life! The remaining three days are usually dressage, hacking or lunging. I also try to keep at least two days a week that Art has no saddle on. He also has couple different types of bridles and bits and I regularly change what we use – we also use bitless bridle often! It has been proven in numerous researches, that it is good for your horse to have days without a bit and also change it regularly.
One horse masseuse once stated that every horse feels often better when they get to move in a variety of ways. He emphasized that hacking, pole work and dressage are good for every horse. That’s why I’m trying to implement this instruction in our weekly schedule - versatile ways to move are positively reflecting in Art’s performance and mindset. I am lucky, since we have a comfortable forest around the stable and the opportunity to have fun with our horses in versatile ways. I just love to go to the stables, wrapped up in my House of Horses Hoodie and just cuddle with Art. Sometimes I can sit in his box with him for hours just cuddling with him. Talk about that serious training, huh?
I encourage every horse owner to try new things with their horse. If, for example, jumping is not your thing, you can do fun exercises with poles, like task tracks. Only your imagination is the limit! In addition, there are many new sports available today, such as working equitation and equestrian archery, you can try out. Although me and Art are training towards competitions, our life also contains everything nice and relaxing. For us, they are long hacks and fast gallops. What is your horse's weekly schedule like?
Wishing you all fun days in the Autumn season with your horses,
Sofia & Art
Pictures: Aada Lätti