Wednesday 4 July 2018

Long Weekend Rides (part 2)

Cisco was ridden early on Sunday morning. So early, he hadn't gotten out of bed when I arrived. At 9am. Kids these days.
Everyone wants to sleep in on a long weekend.
He was a superstar for my morning ride. Since the arena was still empty, I decided it was going to be a day of leg yields. He has the idea of them, but they are in no way confirmed. He is still very much in the move off my leg when he feels like it phase, so I want to sharpen that up.

I was actually quite pleased with how well he did. For the most part I got sideways movement when I put my leg on. In the beginning he got a bit quick and strong, so I threw in a walk transition at the end, and that seemed to do the trick and let him realize that the leg didn't mean go fast.

Next I did one of my favourite exercises for green horses - a half circle reverse at each end with a circle at E or B. Lots of bending, changes of bend, and it always seems to help get a good rhythm.
Yes, your butt looks big.
It wasn't perfect - lots of bulging out and pushing his shoulders to the right when I started a right circle. But there were moments when he might have actually been settling into the contact for the first time! There was also lots of fussing and a very unsteady head, but his rhythm got very steady, and this was a different fussiness than usual. Kind of a forward and down fussiness, instead of either a giraffe neck or pulling the nose in.

So on Monday, I tried the same exercise in the hopes of reproducing the moments from the day before. Which of course didn't happen.
I'm going to miss the black forelock in a few years when it turns white.
Our leg yields weren't as good. Our steering on the circle was terrible. He just never settled into that rhythm like he did the day before. So we went off and did some canter.

Although he is very balanced at the canter (we did one turn that he shouldn't have been able to keep cantering through but he did!) he generally has more whoa than go. And we haven't done much of it yet so he's still worried about it. All I'm worried about at this time is forward. I also think he might be a bit weak in the stifle area, as he has stumbled behind a few times. I see lots of trot poles in our future!

I think that the new bit is making a difference. There have been moments that I think he might actually be settling into the contact, hopefully a few more rides will make a difference.


  1. Carmen will sometimes try to escape the leg yield by speeding up. I love them for teaching inside leg to outside rein and that legs on don't always mean one thing.

  2. Sounds like he’s doing well! I love when they figure out that balance to hold themselves through trickier turns