Girls Horse Club Blog

Are You Up for a Challenge?

Published by • Jun 26th, 2010 • Category: by Julia, Summer of Horse Dreams

by Julia, age 16

Hey Girls Horse Club! How’s your Summer of Horse Dreams been so far?

Mine has had its ups and downs — but most of all it is filled with a lot of horses. I wish I could give some of my incredibly good fortune to all of you so everyone could ride and work with the animals we all love so much, but unfortunately I can’t do that. I would love for each and every one of you, especially those of you who rarely have horses in their lives, to delve a little deeper into the equestrienne world in an effort to realize your dreams.

In order to help with this, Madelaina and I (with assistance from the lovely LeadMare) will be hosting the first ever Girls Horse Club Weekly Challenges.

Are You Up for a Challenge?

Beginning shortly, we will be posting blogs detailing a challenge for the week. We believe these challenges are easily attainable (with creativity and work on your part!), but also give a realistic view of the horse world. They will encourage you to become more knowledgeable, give you a little insight into horse ownership and riding, and will hopefully encourage you to set goals and strive towards your dreams in the long run. For those of you who have the privilege of horses in your life, these challenges should still be, well, a bit challenging and will hopefully inspire you to reach higher and learn more.

Submissions will remain closed aside from the challenges and an occasional blog from Madelaina, LeadMare, or myself — so if you’re inspired this summer, write your heart out in a journal and save it for when/if submissions do open!

I can’t say too much more without giving away the first challenge, but here’s a hint: If you enjoy scrapbooking, you will probably enjoy this one.

Feel free to ask any questions in comments as well as suggest your own challenge ideas! Feedback is always welcome.


Your humble editor,


27 Nickers »

  1. This sounds great! When is the first challenge?

  2. Ooh can’t wait till the first challenge

  3. Sounds awesome! When is the first challenge going to be?

  4. Woot, woot! Can’t wait (:

  5. I am excited! GHC needs SOMETHING to keep it alive. HOnestly, it’s been ‘dead’ ever since the writing competion.

  6. This a great idea. It sounds fun, I’m excited for the first challenge :)

  7. sounds good,

  8. G’day horse chums!! =0) I love the challenge idea Julia! Let’s see my summer so far has been filled to the brim with 4-H and getting ready for the county fair in August! Wish me luck, I will be doing an western pleasure show. This is going to be tricky for me because my whole riding life as been English with I enjoy with passion. I hope all of you are having a champion summer!


  9. KEWL

  10. Yay!! I cant wait!! Nice to see y’all again!
    And big newz!! I have a really good chance of buying my fave horse because I found some really good, cheap livery close by!! Yay~
    And my gramps told me I won’t be getting his racehorse for a long time because she is turning into a nice prospect. She has a HUGE attitude and is quick on her hooves :)

    Btw, when is the first challenge?? I can’t wait!!

  11. Can’t wait until the first challenge! Lately, I’ve been working with one of my horses to work towards County Fair in July, and with Lucy (my new horse, !!!) we’re making so much progress it’s amazing. Yes, she’s still fat. Yes, she’s still a bit pushy and bossy. But she doesn’t try to run me over in the field any more, ignores the stallion, and most of all seems to trust me – and only me. She won’t let anyone else get near her. =) We’ll just have to work on that!

  12. Brilliant collaboration Julia and Madelaina! I’m looking forward to the challenges, the fun, and the friendship that’s bound to be part of our Summer of Horse Dreams!

  13. Unfortunately I hit a bump in the road; one of my favorite horses passed away, and I don’t think I’ll be online much, I’m going to be at the barn a lot for work and I’m a counselor there too.. Now that she has passed away I want to be at the barn as much as possible…

    Rest in the best peace, sweetest horse ever. :'(

  14. Wow, this should be interesting. :) I have been around horses more than I thought this summer. :) So, its been great. I can’t wait to see what the challenges are. And if I do decide I won’t be able to participate (due to some busyness, my birthday, a LOT of tennis etc . . . ) it will be fun to see other people participate. But we’ll see if I can or not. :)

  15. Oh no… im so sorry WesternMare, but I’m glad to see you have the strenght and dedication to return to the stables. Your love of horses is so obvious and strong <3

  16. LeadMare, when is the first challenge supposed to be? I can’t wait!

  17. OK girls! I have a few questions. So this summer I’m learning western. BIG change for me after doing English for my whole riding life so far. Question one… how do each of you sit the lope? What do you advise an english rider who wants to post on instinct during a trot but your told to ride a sitting trot? And can you tell me how much rein your supposed to have for western? I’m so used to have a lot of contact in English.

    thanks gals

  18. huskyhorsegirl, glad you’re looking forward to the first challenge. Julia and Madelaina are running the show so I’ll let them answer your question, but I’m looking forward to it too.

    Happy 4th of July everyone. Even if you don’t celebrate this U.S. holiday, any day is a good day to celebrate independence!

  19. HorseFeathers, those are awesome questions. I’m usually an english rider, but I’ve ridden western off and on for a few years now, but am going to start regularly riding both because of an opportunity. Anyways, to answer your questions:

    1) It’s easiest to practice sitting the lope as if you’re going to sit the english canter, but make the motion of your hips slower and sit back – wayyyyy back – in your saddle. If it helps (this is how I learned to sit the lope), you can first focus on the rhythm of the lope before attempting to sit it. This means you might have to let yourself bounce and flop around, but really its good if you can get a feel for the horse’s regular lope rhythm. One more thing – watch the horse lope on a lunge line. You might find yourself counting out the rhythm in your head or acting as if you’re riding the lope.
    2)I advise you to practice a sitting trot in the english saddle. Even if you just sit a few beats as if you were changing diagonals, that’s still practice. Maybe start by posting for a few beats, sitting for, say, three beats, and then posting a few, sitting four, etc.
    3) About the reins – if it’s possible, ride your western horse on a loose rein; if that’s not possible, though, feel free to ride on a tighter rein; but try your best not to make it look like you’re riding english in a western bridle and saddle. Do your best to ride with a very loose rein; the loosest rein you could possibly ride in without endangering yourself.

    Overall, just remember to take the transition from english to western slow, stay safe, and most of all… HAVE FUN!

    Hope I helped,

  20. Cant wait for the first challenge XD

  21. Thank you, DianaLuv. I’ve been working hard this week at the barn, and it tore my heart to walk by the empty stall that has once been occupied by the sweetest creature. I hope everyone has fun with the first challenge, I’ll return in a few days and read over what happened. My parents have booked me some tours at other barns.. I’m nervous yet excited.. I’ve been at my barn since I’ve started riding.. Though they don’t do any shows, just the basics of riding, and I’m advancing too quickly. I’ll have a tough week this week, but I hope everyone at GHL has a great time!


  22. That was great VC! I’ll take your comments into my training! Have an awesome 4th of July gals!

  23. If I find the time, then maybe I’ll participate. I have a horse to train, junior varsity soccer to play, and dance intensives to go to. Have fun!

  24. Awesome thats gonna be so much fun! BTW I got a horse everyone! Her name is Katie xD

  25. Hey everyone, I’m glad you’re excited!

    The first challenge should be posted shortly. My apologies for the delay!

    HorseFeathers, I regularly ride both English and Western. In a Western saddle your stirrups are supposed to be longer because as you’ve obviously learned, generally speaking you don’t post and the gaits are slower and easier to sit. If you find it very difficult to sit at a trot in western saddle, your “trot” should really be a “jog.” Try slowing down your horse, make sure your heels are down, tighten your legs. Finding your natural rhythm at the lope is similar to the canter; you will find it awkward until you get used to it, and if it’s a smooth horse you’re on it is actually very comfortable and feels natural.

  26. Illinois Cowgirl – Congrats on getting your new horse! I have to say myself, having your own horse is FUN. You can do ANYTHING you want, and whenever you want – but don’t take that to advantage. Take care of her, okay? Tell me some about her!

    Horsefeathers – No problem at all! Keep me updated on how it’s going!

  27. Hooray! It’s gonna be great!