More relaxation and some stretching

I brought him in and lunged him and he did quite well with all of it. One buck in canter on the lunge line, which is a big improvement. We did a lot of walk work, focusing on relaxation and flexing correctly. He did very well. I picked up the bit from Rylee and next session we will use it!

Hack and jumping

I took her out for a hack with Vicky, Megan and Miranda. She lead the way all the way with aplomb and stood beautifully when the others were practicing going away from the group. I know she does this fine, so we didn’t worry about it. We jumped over some small brush jumps out by the hickory grove. She had some hesitation and some awkwardness at first, but by the end she was catching on to the game. She also tolerated the other horses near her better than she had done in the past, even tolerating an inadvertent bump or two. Very good night!

Better all the time

I brought him in and lunged him and whaddya know, he only bucked once on the lunge line in canter. His work in trot is starting to be more relaxed and canter looks almost rideable.

When I got on, we did a lot of walk work, especially to the right. He started to let go a bit and relax, which was excellent. Then we did some trot work, which went ok. He is starting to relax a bit. I’ll be really happy when he starts to come more over his topline in trot as he is starting to do more consistently in walk. Caroline was kind enough to shoot some video of his trot work. This wasn’t the best of the day, but it wasn’t too shabby either.

After his work, I took him out for graze.

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Back at it

Life has gotten in my way this April and I haven’t been able to work with Harley as much as I would like. However, he has been paying very careful attention because every time I get on him, he picks up right where we left off. What a champion!

IMG_3254He was easy to catch today, unlike last time I worked with him. So that was lovely. Then I brought him in and brushed him. He is in full shed mode! Here is the tumbleweed of hair that came off him! LOL.

I lunged him as usual and had more cooperation and less bucking than the last time out. This is a step in the right direction! I got on and did a lot of walking, staying off his mouth and letting him go pretty much anywhere he wanted in the arena (in a general circular direction). After many minutes, he started to relax his neck and walk a little better. We also did some trot work, which was quick, but better than it had been. A few times, when we cantered past the far door, he sprayed sand against it which makes a startling sound. He didn’t react at all. That’s a lovely thing. Very good day!

Late evening hack

IMG_3186I tacked her up and warmed her up in the arena. She was her usual stellar self, so off we went on a late evening trail ride. We went all the way around the field in all gaits, then walked along the woods on the way home. She had one understandable shy at a bird that flew up right in front of her. Quite lovely.

You may not even be able to easily see her ears in this shot of the sunset! Whoops. I guess it was a little darker than I thought.

Harley the good man

I caught Harley easily in his pasture, though he may have thought I was bringing him in for supper. Poor dear. I groomed him and got lots of nice dead hair out of him. Then I tacked him and took him out to lunge. He was a little rambunctious at first, but he got better relatively quickly.

I got on and did some trotting and at one point I thought he was going to canter. I discouraged that idea and he complied easily. Then we did a lot of walking in order to get him to settle down and take a breath, which he eventually did, several times. This is great news, as relaxation is the key to everything. Good day.

I’d like to see him in a different bit. The single joint snaffle can be uncomfortable for some horses. Since he shows some bit anxiety, I think it would be good to buy him a french link snaffle, which is about as mild as you can get. This is a very nice bit that I recommend. Short term, I will use one of mine on him.

Elsa on a hack

IMG_2864Pretty morning but very windy. We warmed up in the arena and she was on her toes. I got in two point and let her canter on a bit, which seemed to satisfy her and then she settled down to some good work in all gaits.

We then hacked out across the road. She was concerned about an old shed in the woods, but after I let her look at it and just breath a bit, she was fine with it. Then there were some odd looking logs that I couldn’t fault her for looking at. We had a nice long canter and a walk to cool down. Very good day.

Harley’s birthday ride

He didn’t want to work on his birthday and let me follow him around the paddock for a few minutes before he let me catch him. I don’t blame him. It was sunny and he and his pasturemate were out of the wind and enjoying life.

I brought him in and groomed him and he is shedding like a crazy child! Ha ha. I should have taken a picture of the tumbledweed of hair in the aisle. I tacked him up and went into the arena. We lunged and he did very well. He still had a few bucks in canter, but he is gaining a lot of balance and getting less frustrated, which results in less bucking.

I put his bridle on and rode him around at a walk and trot for a longer period today. We ended on a lot of walk work and he relaxed a bit. Moving in the right direction.