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Posts Tagged ‘reining’

If you’ve been in the Peruvian horse breed for a while, odds are you’ve heard these kinds of comments:

“Peruvians can do anything any other breed can do.”

“They’re really not that versatile. They’re here to gait. It’s what they do best.”

A recent discussion on our club Facebook page hit on this very topic. An article on Peruvians and reining appeared in my email inbox, so I posted it to our FB page. There are some excellent comments in there about what different people are doing with their horses and what those activities mean for and about the breed.

I’m not picking a side here, but I think it’s a good discussion to continue as we all work to promote our breed. I know we all want to share and show off our horses, but I think we also need to figure out whose attention we’re trying to catch. If we can define the market we’re trying capture, we can target those folks.

I guess that raises the question of who “we” is, though. Are “we” traditionalists preserving and promoting Peruvian culture? Are “we” fun-loving trail riders who just want to get out and enjoy nature? Are “we” parade/demo folks who love to put on a memorable presentation of this stunning horse? Are “we” competetive types who have something to prove to other breeds?

If “we” are all the above, I’d say that’s a pretty versatile group.

What do you think?

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Wow. I don’t know a damn thing.

That’s a conclusion I came to recently in a riding lesson, and last weekend just drove it home even harder. The more I learn, I realize, the less I know.

We had a fantastic clinic up here taught by Kim Montee Cavataio. She covered all kinds of things — tack, gait, conformation, showmanship — but she opened with strong words encouraging us to always be learning, to always work be better horse people.

She talked about how we need to raise the level of riding in our breed, how we have a lot to learn from reiners, dressage folk and others. She encouraged us to find a good instructor who can improve our equitation, and through that our horses’ performance.

I was on the verge of becoming really frustrated. I grew up with horses. For almost my entire adult life, I’ve been in lessons, to include the last two years with Wonder Pony. We’ve definitely come a very long way. But the way to come seems to stretch on forever.

I guess that’s really the point: There’s always more. I don’t ride and train just for ribbons. Don’t get me wrong — I LOVE to win. Few things in life feel better than being part of a barrida. But I only compete maybe twice a year. That’s just a few days out of a full calendar. Every other day presents all kinds of opportunities to do more, be more.

I think that’s a lesson we should all take to heart.

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