Thank you to everyone who made our show a success!
Wow, what an amazing show Steel City Spin was! We had an incredible time, according to feedback so did everyone else – the turnout of competitors and people who came to watch was awesome, our commentator said it was the most attended turnout at a Reining show he’d seen in years.
We are incredibly grateful to all our volunteers, show staff, competitors, vendors, the band, spectators and of course sponsors – without all of you the show would not have been possible.
The pictures in this article are from the wonderful photographer Tom von Kapherr – he will be back for our August show!
As we are busily planning and working on our show, what about our horses? What kind of plan do we have for them in-between shows?
Jen: What I like to do in-between shows is focus on the basics. I don’t drill on the maneuvers, if they are broke they know their job and if we continue to drill them at home, I feel our horses will not try as hard for us in the show pen. They mentally won’t know when they are right if we keep asking them the same question (drilling), your horse needs a reprieve and to know they got the answers right. Every ride I assess each horse and make sure they are mentally comfortable in their training and that they are understanding my communication with them. If they are struggling with something I ask myself ‘what do I need to change to help them with this?’
I believe keeping their mental state positive will go a long way, so I make sure my foundation work is solid and if it is, the horse is rewarded with shorter rides that are left on positive notes. I also like to change it up and do something totally different than reining, I enjoy pole work with my horses and trail work. It challenges them mentally, and achieves two goals: 1) you can see how broke your horse is and 2) it’s a lot of fun for them and you!
Sharon: Doing something different with my horse helps me as much as it helps them. We can get into zombie circle mode and that’s no fun. I like to take my horse on trails or to the obstacle park, it gives them something different to focus on and as a rider, you can practice your seat and other things you need to work on in the show ring, to create that muscle memory. You may find me riding through the forests imagining I am doing a reining pattern and going through it in my head, I do get some funny looks because of what I am doing – imagining sitting a large fast circle yet my horse is walking along peacefully!
The team is now gearing up for our second show – the Steel City Slide, at Ancaster, Aug 26 – 28. You can see our show flyer and show bill on our website: https://www.jjreining.ca/and we hope to see you there! And, If you’d like to stay in touch with what’s going on, you can join our mailing list at this address: https://www.jjreining.ca/contact
Pro and Non-Pro articles written by Jen Jonas of Jonas Performance Horses (Pro) and Sharon Jones of Be A Better You (Non-Pro). Together, they are J&J Reining Inc. Both Jen and Sharon are believers in continual learning – if you’re not learning you’re not growing.