In the last few sessions I have worked on helping her tune in to the seat, and with that coming along nicely, I started work on the canter to trot transition. We worked on staying relaxed in canter and reacting calmly to downward transition aids and made some nice progress.
Such a beautiful day! I went out and brought him in to brush him and he is shedding quite nicely! His hooves look great. I tacked up and headed out on a hack. We walked down the hill and half way back up for warm up and then trotted up the rest of the hill. He thought that was pretty fun, but also pretty hard.
Then we went for another long walk past the chicken house and took a right at the T intersection. When we turned onto the road that goes west to the Delander Cemetery, I asked for canter, thinking I would take it easy and just got a short way. He was very happy to go, giving me a few overly-rounded canter steps and snaky neck to boot. It was hilarious.
We trotted much of the way home, and walked the last half mile. He feels great, is at perfect weight and in good humor. Some of our peaceful walk:
The gravel roads are perfect for hacking because the footing is soft enough for the horses and also makes the cars drive slow when they go by, of which there were exactly two because people avoid soft gravel – bonus! Missy on Sammy and I on Lexie went down Cam’s road and then east to the creek, about four miles. She got looser and looser in a positive manner. Great ride.
South drapes open on the arena and more work on seat aids. She is doing well!
A beautiful day to ride and Leo was in a prime mood for cookies and fun. We went down the hill to the end, then up the hill and east to the property where the guy is always burning things in the ditch. LOL. The gravel road was terrible for driving, but great for a canter! After untacking he had a nice roll in the indoor.
She is catching on big time!
Magee was going to be home from the U of I for about 36 hours, so she spent three of them at Field Day! How lovely that we make the cut in this busy young woman’s life! Megan Mullen was out and she was kind enough to videotape our work with Merlin today Thanks to both of you!
Since it is supposed to be so cold tomorrow and Monday, I was on a mission to work everyone today. Lexie and I worked more on seat aids today, with very good success. After a brief review, she showed the correct response in walk and even had some moments of nice rebalance in trot. Her canter work was more malleable as well! Great!
After a nice walk warm-up in the relative warmth of 29 degrees (yes, I was riding in a sweatshirt, no jacket) I did about 30 walk to halt transitions to help her understand the said aid for collecting. We spend a lot of time teaching horses that the calf means “go” and spending some time teaching them that the thigh and the lower back mean “rebalance” is time well spent.
She started to understand the concept well in walk and to make the appropriate changes. She even carried it forward into trot and canter well. This was a great start.
Another lovely day, thought the clouds were already coming in, in front of the storm this weekend. Nevertheless, we rolled up the south curtains and went to work. She had a nice walk warm up and some good trot work. Canter was a little tight and it improved.