Friday, February 27, 2009

Learn to Ride

Children spend more and more time playing computer games, and less time outdoors working with peers in a team enviroment. Its time to get out doors. And have some fun.

I was touched today when I witnessed a "Teen" mentoring a fellow team member at today's Chamber's Flat Pony Show.

Today was a very nerve racking and exciting day, as my daughter Rose, a reserve member of the Shantaylah Lodge Showteam was to ride out in an open paddock without a lead line attached. For those of you that are not fluent in horse jargon, (like me) this is a significant event, as young riders get ready to compete in riding events, they start off with an adult running along side the horse to ensure they are in no danger. When young riders are ready, they enter an "Open Rider Class" where they no longer have the assistance of an adult running along side the horse.

This was my daughters big day, to enter the arena without assistance, and both of us where equally nervous. My daughter was overwhelmed by the experience as there where many other riders in this event with her. They ranged in age and experience. Rose did a wonderful job for her first attempt, although as many 8 year olds do, she was upset at not coming a place.

Whilst I was explaining to my daughter,

"it is not about getting a place or ribbon,"

we where approached by Lucy a fellow member of the Show Team.

Lucy had also competed in the event. Lucy is in her teens, and has been riding a lot longer than Rose. She had watched Rose ride and had recieved the 1st place ribbon for her efforts in the event. When she noticed that Rose was upset, she approached Rose and told her of the wonderful effort she had seen Rose display. She then offered Rose her 1st place ribbon. Rose was very happy and accepted the Ribbon as any 8 year old girl would. I was moved to tears. It is not often that you see such compasion, empathy and team work.

It was a lovely moment, and I'm sure my daughter will remember this lovely gesture for years to come. She may even display the same qualities when she is a more experienced rider.

Riding in a Show Team takes team work, dedication, discipline and passion. After today I have no doubt that Rose will learn so much as a member of a Show Team. What child doesn't dream of riding a horse, and of one day, owning his or her own pony.

To see Rose grow and form relationships with peers of all ages is heart warming.

Rose rides with the Shantaylah Lodge Show Team. Shantaylah Lodge is located in Greenbank, Qld. If you'd like to check out more about joining a show team, or you just want your child to learn to ride, why not talk to Karen from Shantaylah Lodge. Click to visit Shantaylah Lodge website.

Thank you Lucy

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