I can't tell you how long it's been since I've truly ridden a horse. Years. Not decades, but years nonetheless.
So when yesterday I rode Reggie the school horse at a trot, I received many bruises all along the insides of my thighs and knees. He's a great horse, but he has a horrid trot. And he is so tall! I'm not sure I've ever ridden a horse that tall, other than the draft horses I used to sit up on.
After that, I rode Siaga. He did pretty well. He was very energetic at first, and nearly had me worn out and exhausted within the first three minutes of having him in the indoor. Needless to say, he got a very good warm up to put off some of the energy, then we tacked up. I got on him and then James the barn manager tightened the girth for me, and then he got on Reggie and we started riding.
Siaga did really well. It took him a while to understand that my squeezing on his sides meant go, but he understood very well the principles of turning left and right, and backing up very well. I refused to let him trot, and I refused to let him stop and stand still, I could feel the whole time he was like a squashed spring, just waiting to bounce up.
After making several laps of the arena in both directions, both leading and following Reggie, and also after getting close to the wall a few times, he decided it was time to get me off, and gave a little crow hop- a little rear, and then a buck. Some how, I stayed on, albeit with more bruising on the front of my thighs.
Thankfully, his previous forward movement kept him from getting a lot of power into it, so it wasn't major, and he undoubtedly learned it is not so very easy to ditch me in the mud, which is a good thing.
One thing he has issues with, is standing still while there is a person on his back. Or I guess with me on his back. He didn't have any issues with it when James was on him, in fact, he stood stock still. James squeezed, nudged, kicked, swatted with a crop, and still Siaga stood. Finally James pulled on just one rein and got him moving in circles and then walking, and Siaga did well with him riding, too.
So, Siaga is well on his way to becoming a great horse. :D