On rising trots (and other things I didn’t know about horses)

I have to admit that when V started riding lessons, I pictured her on a horse, walking around in a circle on a lead line for three years. But that hasn’t been the case. Just this year, V and her trainer have been working on the “rising trot” (Update–also known as a “posting,” as some of you have pointed out). A rising trot is “a style of riding in which a rider rises from the saddle on every second stride of a horse’s trotting pace.” um. yeah. okay.)

I can only imagine how unnerving it would be to bounce along on a horse without holding on for dear life. But if V wants to ride a horse with reins, her hands must be free. Megan had been gently coaxing V to do the rising trots with her arms out like an airplane. Understandably, V was apprehensive and cautious. Then, as she was able to hold her arms out for a couple of seconds, she started setting goals for herself. One day she told me that she wanted to hold 20 rising trots without hands. Hmmm, I thought, better to under-react. “Sure honey,” I said vaguely and changed the subject.

Well it turned out her record was 50 rising trots that day, but I didn’t record it. A month later, after to my untrained eye, it kinda looks like horse riding to me.