12 Oct Jimmy Wofford Clinic Recap
Every year the preparation, the organization and the timing for this clinic falls so seamlessly into place it feels like its meant to be! Jimmy flies in from Virginia and arrives ready to educate early on Saturday morning. We start each session with a question and answer session as we listen to Moses, our ranch donkey, bray happily in the background. Jim discusses conditioning, the riders responsibility, his expectations and shares his extensive experience with us all. As the day progresses we all head down to our main area and the 3’6″ group gets things started. Each section from the big jumpers to the babies do the same exercises adjusted to accommodate ability and the level of horse. Saturday is the “Jim”nastics session that Jimmy is known for!! A huge portion of his teaching is about making the horses independent and brave, the gymnastics start this process. The horses become careful, bold and adjustable as they work through the exercises and Jim focuses on good positions, proper timing and rhythm above all things. Day two allows the riders to apply their skills from day one. Offset lines, related distances and half-stride lines encourage the riders to make proper adjustments, count, plan, and think ahead. Jim helps each rider improve their application of aids to improve rhythm and consistency to the fences. I have been riding with Jim for many years now and every year I take so much away from these sessions, I cannot thank him enough for his mentorship, willingness to share his knowledge and good humor while we all learn and grow.