Lainey Ashker Clinic

I really wasn’t sure what to expect from riding with Lainey. She’s a lovely rider and obviously she has a soft spot for my favorite breed, the thoroughbred, but my trainer also had me a little nervous going into day 1 of the clinic. What if I couldn’t keep up?

Luckily, that was not the case. Lainey is a lovely clinician. She expects you to try and she expects you to work hard but she doesn’t get frustrated as long as she can see that. She will get frustrated if she doesn’t think you’re giving her (and your horse) 150% but that’s exactly what I expect out of my trainers.

Unfortunately, I don’t have a lot of great pictures from the weekend. The clinic was held in an indoor and while the boy did eventually figure it out, I just asked for video. So that’s what I got!

Day 1 wasn’t my best performance ever. Gus did really well over all the grids but I could not seem to keep everything going. It wasn’t horrible, and we were not the worst pair in the group by any means, but I was frustrated going through the bounces.

Day 2, things finally sunk in and I had a great day. Am I perfect? By no means but I felt real improvement both in myself and in Gus. Lainey saw it too. Also she loved Gus. Really loved Gus.

But I mean, who doesn’t?

It was Gus’ first time in an indoor and he barely batted an eye. The second day he did look cross eyed at some extra standards that were right outside the door that hadn’t been there the first day but kept going when I made it no big deal. He’s a good boy. He also did not bat his eye at any of the jumps. You may not remember, but one of the problems I have at shows is that any new stadium fence is super scary. The more we get out though, the more that will go away… hopefully.

The grids Lainey set up were to help us focus on us. I was the only one on a green horse but I thought they really helped Gus too. Or maybe it was that I was riding better. Probably both. She really got after me for sitting up and having a steady contact through the grid, something that I’ve been trying to do with New Trainer as well.

Lainey has definitely gone on the list of clinicians that I will gladly pay to work with again. Her teaching style really fit the way I learn and she complimented what I was already working on at home without dumbing things down. I believe she’ll be back in April and I’d love to have the chance to ride with her again.

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