Endurance Training 2

Endurance training continues in Batu Arang for 2-3 sessions a week. Last Thursday Jaclyn Seng and Suki Low joined me for a ride. This was the week right after Hari Raya.

As usual, Abang Iskandar came to town to pick us up with his pick up truck. This is the clearest shot I have. You can probably tell how shaky it was in the truck while going up the stable.

It was 7-ish A.M. when we arrived the stable. Looks like Abang Suhairi (on Mizumo) and Sara (on Danit) were even earlier than us!

Abang Suhairi always has a big wide smile on his face. It was his first ride after the month of Ramadan and Hari Raya… to trot off all the delicious lemang, rendang and ketupat obviously.

Sara just done flatworking Danit. I took the chance to play with Danit for a little while.

And thanks Sara for the portrait shot with perfect filter!

Shortly after, we head off to the trail. Here is a video of our trail ride.

And here are some more photos that are not included in the video.

Wefie of the Raya riders! Yeeeeehar!

When we were exiting palm oil farm.

A photo from my helmet camera.

On our way back. The sun is much brighter but cloud also gathered in the sky. Jaclyn has the fully matching attire, including her whip.

The background made Jaclyn look like she was filming ancient Korean drama on a horse.

On our way back, Suki’s horse (Joker) right shoe came off. Abang Is exchanged horse with Suki. So Suki was riding Shadow on the way back and it was really cute to see Suki bouncing on the little pony.

Abang Is shared a trick with me that if a shoe came off, we should either walk or canter. When we canter, we should canter on the lead where the shoe is still on.

More photos on the top of the hill…

Everyone with their signature pose!

On our way walking back to stable.

Jaclyn looked like having a really good time with Love while Suki has been “bouncing” all her way back ūüėÄ

When we got back to stable, Abang Iskandar wasted no time and brought out Jack for jumping practice.

How well can Jack jumps? A photo speaks a thousand words.

The little fans who has been admiring at the side just now decided to give it a try to jump herself!

Looking good jumper!

Great job! Keep going!

Go Jaclyn, go!

The face Jaclyn made after a really awkward jump.

Jacklyn getting a bit more coaching from Abang Iskandar.

Satisfied with her virgin jump. Finally getting off Jack.

It’s now Suki’s turn to jump with Jack.

Woop! Looking good Suki!

Since it was the week right after Raya, everyone was still in Raya mode. Abang Is prepared Teh-O with Raya cookies for us in the stable. Yummie!

It was a fun time training with Suki and Jaclyn. We covered 15KM which was a really comfortable yet satisfying distance for an outride.

Looking forward to ride with you both again, until next time~

Jumping Lesson 3

It was my 3rd jumping lesson with Aqil in AS Equestrian Center. It was a fun session together with Suki. Having a buddy certainly certainly gave us a bit of competitiveness in the game!

In the video @2.02, Suki’s horse, Nix got excited and started cantering. I got really worried for her. Luckily Suki is a solid rider and managed to calm Nix down in just a few seconds.¬†I have a chat with her afterward to find out she released the reins a little too early hence the little drama.

At @2.14, I was attempting the second jump and Marco decided to move to the right to avoid the poll. It caught me by surprised and I¬†felt off from Marco. The good news is, I manage to hold on to¬†Marco’s neck and land on my foot, phew!

Jumping Lesson 1

My hacking buddy, Suki Low whom I met in GHRC texted me out of nowhere “U keen on jumping?”. Jumping has always been at the back of my mind. I have always been impressed¬†by how professional show jumpers elegantly cantering and jumping over tall fences. Throughout all my visits to different stables, I particularly like¬†AS Equestrian Center when I went hacking with Aqil few months back. I replied, “Yup, let’s give it a try!”

Sunday, we met up in AS Equestrian Center for our first jumping lesson. Well, it was my first jumping lesson but not for Suki. She was jumping back in Netherlands 20 years ago. In one jump, her pony (1.35m tall) and her were jumping an oxer of 1.10m got his belly stuck in mid air. He felt down, rolled over her and the obstacle collapsed. You can imagine it was quite a chaos. Since then, she has lost her confidence in jumping and has not been jumping. Last Sunday was her first jump since 20 years!

Aqil started the lesson by explaining the basics of the equipment.


Aqil got Marco for Suki to ride on to warm up.


Aqil got me another horse, Nixs Bahamdan to warm up. A fairly tall and slightly slim dark brown horse.


While trotting at one particular corner, he consistently likes to start cantering. Probably due to his previous training that got him cantering at that corner.

Then, Aqil taught us about sitting 2-point to get ready for our jump.

Here go Suki’s first jump on Marco!


Suki made a turn at the corner and go for another jump.


She continues to go on for another 10-15 jumps throughout the lesson.

We exchanged horses. Suki definitely looked super happy for making so many jumps after 20 years!


First I trot on Marco for a round or two. Then, Aqil arranged the jumping pole for me to trot over. Next, he made a low barrier for me to jump over.

Here goes my virgin jump!


And another jump…


The poles are there to make sure we pass through the yellow section to stay in the middle.

At one jump, Suki was walking across the landing area. I was shouting¬†“Horse coming!” to make sure she knows I was approaching.


Aqil was explaining a similar experience he had while he was training in Europe doing a 1.6m jump. There was a person standing and chatting right in the middle while Aqil was approaching fast. The horse was too fast to stop. Since he knew his horse could jump over that person, so he jumped!


After a jump, Aqil coached me on what could be improved further.

Aqil showed me I was hunching my back.


Aqil showed me I should be straightening my back instead while jumping.


People¬†say horse is the reflection of the rider. I didn’t really quite understand that until I do jumping.

Obviously, I was a little unsure and worried in my first few jumps. When Aqil asked me if I was scared, I acted and responded confidently that I was not. However, Marco could picked up such subtle hint and amplified the emotion by 10 times. This is a time when Marco moved away from the jumping poles while I was approaching with an unsure emotion. A little worry on the rider has such an impact on the horse.


To be fair, I’m sure Marco is a very well trained horse for jumping. If it’s not for such a well trained horse, I wouldn’t be able to make so many¬†jumps in my first lesson. Well, instead of saying I learn jumping, I should say Marco taught¬†me how to jump.

Aqil was taking a photo of my jump. How thoughtful!



After making about 10-15 jumps, we slow walk to let Marco rest.

Final Thoughts

Jumping is not as hard as I initially thought. I often see people falling off from horses on YouTube videos. That gave me really bad impression how dangerous jumping could be. Well I’m not saying jumping is not dangerous, it is just not as bad as¬†I initially thought. In fact, throughout our jumps in our¬†first lesson, none of us felt down.

Big part of the reason for such a satisfying and pleasant jumping lesson has to do with¬†Aqil and Marco. First, Aqil is a very experienced jumper himself and he still actively jumps. He breaks down the transition so seamlessly to the point it felt so natural for us to jump 80 cm at the end of our¬†first lesson. Second, Marco is a fantastic jumping horse. Like I said earlier, instead of claiming¬†I’m learning how to jump, the more accurate way to say is Marco was teaching me how to jump.

Obviously, our hands might not be in the right position, our heels might¬†not be pointing down, our back were hunching (okay probably just me) and I’m sure there are still a lot to improve. But the important thing is we did jump. A lot of jumps!

Frankly, I did not have much expectation before stepping in. It took me a long time to trot steadily and to canter when I first started learning horse riding. I thought jumping is going to be another steep learning curve. However, it was surprisingly easy with the right coach and the right horse. Thanks Aqil! Thanks Marco! Also thanks Suki for giving me a kick to get me started in jumping!

It was a really pleasant jumping lesson, really looking forward for my next lesson!

If you want to learn jumping, I highly recommend you to visit AS Equestrian Center. The fee is pretty affordable at RM80/lesson. Give Aqil (017-620 0027) a call and he will he happy to assist you further.

Here is the location. Please note that the location in Waze is incorrect.