Saturday, August 11, 2012

Oh, Hello Gravity

I fell off my horse today.  It happened.  Totally my fault, really.  Junior has been a spectacularly good boy as of late and today was no exception.  I decided, since his canter was feeling really good, to go into two-point and canter over a ground pole. Not even a big deal. The ground pole was 1st in a line of 3 sets of jump standards down the center line and there were two poles lying at the 3rd set.  I didn't want to go over those so I gently angled him out, but what I didn't think ahead about was the fact that I was  crossing the diagonal and would need to change leads before the corner into his not-as-good lead.  I didn't have much room or time so I asked for the change and he did some sort of half change followed by a stumble and he went down to a knee (or something - hard to say really) and off I went over his left shoulder, somehow ending up on my back with my legs underneath him, looking up at his chin.  My guess is I could have stuck it if I was in better riding shape and had more control over my balance. since  I don't believe he was moving forward anymore.  I really don't like that moment you know you're going off and you've lost control of where your body is going.

He stood over me and kept reaching down and kept nuzzling my face while I caught my breath, which was kind of adorable except that he must have hit his muzzle on the ground and he kept raining footing down on my face and smearing dirty arena slobber all over me.  I tried to tell him to back up since my left leg was between his legs and his left foot was much closer to my ... crotch (sorry, was there a better choice of words there?) that I thought appropriate or safe.  But he wouldn't back up and actually tried to step closer with his right foot but listened when I told him to stand.  I'd like to anthropomorphize that he wanted to be over me to protect me from the other horse in the arena.  Either that or he was trying to dig a hole to bury me in.

I felt my head hit but I'm pretty sure it was the last thing to hit.  Now I'm trying to decide if it was enough to replace my helmet. You can see the actual impact spot about equidistant between the Ovation logo and the silver vent on the right.  Ovation has a discounted accident replacement policy and of course says "Helmets involved in accidents should be replaced and not worn again!"  But was that little bump enough to qualify as an accident?  Probably.  Darn it.

My lower sacrum seemed to take the brunt of the impact and it felt like I hit pretty evenly but the dirt on my helmet is on the right side and my right shoulder is ouchie so I'm not really sure how it all went down... pun. I wish it were on film. I lay there long enough to make sure I could breath and my limbs all worked.  Then I got up and got back on and walked him around.  Then I untacked him, took some ibuprofin and sat with an ice pack for a while before heading home for a shower and another ice pack.

I've no idea what this is going to do to my back.  I'm ouchie already so it can't be good.  The plan for the rest of today and tomorrow is to do absolutely nothing but drugs and ice packs and maybe some stretching.  Then we'll see.

Hopefully my back is hurt less than my pride.  My confidence seems fine, I got back on after all, but it'll be a good long time before I ask for a flying lead change.  I'm more mad than anything and fearful of how much this might set me back.  Swearwords.


  1. I'm glad you weren't hurt too badly, and hopefully your back will forgive you shortly. Take it easy and get some rest!

    It doesn't sound like Junior did anything wrong other than be a little clumsy, and he stopped right away... it's always so nice when they do that. It's easier said than done, but I wouldn't dwell on it too much. Hop back on and ask for another change... after you get a new helmet! :)

  2. Glad you're OK - that would be me last Wednesday, falling off Pie due to a big spook. It happens, unfortunately. Feel better soon!

  3. Yikes! Glad you are ok, and nice of Junior to stick around to make sure you were ok. And yes, you will need a new helmet.

  4. Glad you are ok. Good boy Junior, for not running you over! Probably should replace the helmet...but thats coming from a hypocrite who, after falling in the gravel last year on my bday, has yet to replace said helmet...but it was my shoulder that took the brunt too! And theres no scrapes on the helmet...I hope this doesnt set you back with your back...just when things were coming around!

  5. Yikes. Ice, rest and advil are all you can do you for back. Glad you were wearing your helmet. I am sure you don't want to hear it...but I do think you should get a new one. They say that even if you drop it on the barn aisle it looses its effectiveness. It might not have been a big head hitting bump this time, but don't you want your helmet at 100% if you ever do fall off again? Glad you are mostly okay.

  6. Geez, I am so glad you had your helmet on! It always hits harder than you think, as you find out later. How nice of Jr not to run away or step on you (ahem, Mr. Shiny!). I'm sometimes on the fence too, but if I feel my head hit, I know the foam has compressed so I decide to suck it up since I have learned I am horribly unlucky!