Creative Dismounts: Lee’s Story

From Lee of Confessions of a Struggling Dressage Rider

Creative Dismount #1

Peacock Safety Stirrups: Has anyone had a mishap using Peacock Stirrups?

I had been walking (mounted) without stirrups during cool down.  In mid-dismount I found myself suspended halfway to the ground.  The loop of my double-knotted field boot was caught on the hook of the Peacock Stirrup.  (This is a school horse and their tack.)

I found myself clinging to the side of the horse like a monkey, with my knee jammed into my arm pit.

I was totally helpless until the loop in the lace gave.  Unfortunately, as I slid down the side of the horse (in sloooow motion) I was jabbed in the crotch.   Moments later, I was standing safely on the ground, breathing a sigh of relief.

Thankfully, the horse stood quietly the whole time.  I patted him and told him how proud I was of his response.  Then I loosened the girth and ran up the left stirrup.   I registered the pain in my groin area as as I stepped around to the right side.  Looking down I notice that I had ripped out the crotch of my favorite full-seat breeches…and I was flashing everyone!

I quickly took off my vest and tried to wrap it around me like a diaper.  That’s when my instructor realized that something was going on, and started to laugh at me.  Our laughter caught the attenion of others and of course that’s when the only male boarder happened to be there!

I think they caught it all on the security camera.

Creative Dismount #2

One of those moments.

I had been riding for about six months.  It was a really nice warm day in February.  I was on an OTTB and the neighbor was clearing brush.  We started out trotting around the ring, daintily side-stepping the puddles (Why do geldings think they can’t get wet?).  Neighbor man rustles some brush.  Small hiccup spook from TB.  Ok, that wasn’t bad.

Next time around, TB takes off on me.  Cantering circles around the ring!  CANTERING!  Did I mention I don’t know how to canter?! My instructor is very calm and says ” Sit down into it, and half halt!”

Half Halt?  What’s that?  I haven’t learned HALF HALT.

By this time we’ve past my instructor.  The parents are standing there with their jaws on the ground.  We start another pas toward the spectators.  Getting closer to them and the fence.  I scream my instructor’s name as we canter past, and she steps out in hopes of slowing the TB down.  Not happening.  He sped up! (Note to self: screaming and/or yelling doesn’t help.  Horse will go faster because YOU scared him.)

We round the corner again.   I sat briefly into the motion and thought comfy. (What am I? Crazy?)  Then I noticed the fence.  We’re closer than last time, and I tensed.  My instructor says “Shorten your reins!”  Reins?  What reins?  We canter past her and I lose my inside stirrup.

My mind rushes through scenarios:

  1. Try to stay on and crash into fence
  2. Stay on and jump fence

I chose #3 and sailed through the air.  I landed on my back in the mud with my legs up in the air.  Touch down.  I was covered in much.  I mean covered.  Helmet, hands, back, legs.  No way to hide this from my family.

My instructor approached and applauded me for  my successful emergency dismount.

Emergency dismount?  What’s that?

5 thoughts on “Creative Dismounts: Lee’s Story

    1. We may have to have a whole “What’s YOUR mud story episode” whether it involves dismounting or not! I’m thinking back to one wildly improbably but amazingly unexaggerated (really) true thing that happened to me. Looks like, next up, MUD!

      Love the “touch down!”

      Laughter at work has been proven to improve performance by 30%…something to do with endorphins, adrenaline and creative right brain efficiency.

      Hang on…I’ll call Daisy, Bella, and Lillli and we’ll whip up a nice study you can show your boss.

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