“Researchers have settled on what they believe is the magic number for true expertise: 10,000 hours.” – Malcolm Gladwell
Ten……Thousand……Hours! Well I’m not sure I know where Gladwell finds the “magic” in that number but I would certainly say that expertise does take hundreds if not thousands of hours. I know that my Canadian coach Belinda Trussell has told me, dozens of times, to use my ankle to get a certain response from my horse Biasini. Let me be clear this is not my heel, or my foot or the spur or the calf of my leg it is just the inside of the ankle. I bring that into contact with Biasini’s side and give a quick little lift and push. Belinda has told me how to do this and has also taken my leg and manipulated me through it with Biasini standing still.
So why has it taken me almost two years to learn how to use this specific aid? Well….to everything there is a season I suppose, and finally last week the penny dropped, the lightbulb came on and ……I learned how and when to give that little ankle nudge.
The result: I can feel Biasini lift his stomach up and his whole frame lightens and lifts and his trot or canter improves! Here is a video clip of some trot work from one of my lessons this week.
I look at this and see that I need to stop tipping back, to relax my arms more and, and, and…..only a few thousand hours more!!