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Sunday, July 22, 2012

What beat do you march to?

I usually listen to podcasts while I drive, ride and do my more boring activities.  However, I decided to put my ipod on shuffle and listen to my music while I rode on the trail the other day.  The music is an eclectic collection of music, mostly random music I don't have hard copies of, so it remains on my computer.  A little bit of medieval harp music, random country hits, rock, fiddle tunes etc. 

It was interesting to listen to the music, which has a beat, and be riding a horse, which has a beat of it's own.  It was also surprising how often the song that would come up randomly would match the mood and/or beat that Farley and I were doing!  Walking along away from home, a civil war brass band marching song came on.  It was in PERFECT tempo to Farley's walk!  I know that the tempo for a march is a specific beat, because the songs were designed for troops marching - is it possible that because of the long history of the war horse, that this "march tempo" also came about because of the pace of the average walking horse?  I wouldn't be surprised. 

Going home over a rather technical single track, complete with soft spots, scary bushes, and a horse intent on tearing towards home, the song "Girls Gone Wild Came On".  It was PERFECT.  I had the biggest smile on my face as we tore down that trail and that song captured the mood, excitement, drive, and us "girls" perfectly (for those of you new here, Farley is a mare, stuck with a boy's name because I'm obsessed with the black stallion). 

Lots of money is spent on developing Freestyles in the dressage and matching the music with the tempo, mood, and style of the horse.  What songs fit your horses walk?  trot?  canter?  Which songs capture the style of your horse and rider partnership best?


  1. I love riding to music. And having music on in general. It makes our arena schooling sessions so much more pleasant, because what I listen to tends to infuse us both with a lot more energy. I'm definitely a rock, country, and combo of the two type of girl. Mimi has her favorites -- she really likes the country-rock combo.

  2. You know, as much as I hate those holier-than-thou jerks who are like "the music I like the best is the beat of my horse's hooves!"... I kind of am one. I never listen to anything when I ride - I don't want to get startled by something I could've heard, like a mountain bike coming up from behind us. Same thing when I bike around the city - I have to listen for cars coming to kill me from behind. The only time I get to listen to music is when I drive my truck, sigh!

    Sometimes, when we're bored and alone, I sing raunchy hip-hop to Dixie. She is unaffected by my musical abilities. :-/

  3. Hank does not have particular music to match his beats/speed, but I do listen to my Ipod shuffle often when riding alone, or at events. I have my earbuds attached to the harness on helmet, so they are not IN the ear, but next to it. Then I can hear ambient noise if needed. I found that by listening to music, I am actually more relaxed, and then Hank is more relaxed. If there is something we really need to know about, he les me know. ;-) Of course, he hears things looooonnnng before I ever do.

    My music collection is mostly local Texas artists, which would be country, with a mix of some soft rock, pop type artists.

    You are right Mel, often songs come on that are just the right song, at the right time...

  4. I used to take some group lessons, and we'd have a "freestyle" part at the end, where music was played and we practiced. It was quite fun. But like Funder, I never listen to anything when I ride. Our trails are mostly multi-use, and also plenty of wildlife, so I'd rather hear the crashing deer/biker/family with stroller before I come around the corner!

    But poor Major does get to hear plenty of me talking to him, lots of one-sided conversations. And I have a strange memory for poetry, and will randomly recite some poem, or Hamlet soliloquy I learned in high school, or my other favorite, "Charge of the Light Brigade." 8-)

  5. We school with music. It helps me work a little harder then I want to.


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