Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Two Good Rides

The little Stinker has been a good boy lately.  S rode him Friday and he was so so.  He wasn't bad but wasn't good either.  He got Saturday off, because we had two horses colic and they had to be taken to a University.  I went along for the ride and didn't sleep for 30+ hours and was totally nonfunctional Saturday evening when we got back.  Both horses are home now and everything is fine.

Sunday I was too sore to really ride so I got the bright idea of taking him on a trail ride with two other girls.  He was good for the first half and then he flipped the switch and the prancer came out.  We were in the woods, so there wasn't really any room to send him forward on a circle.  So once we got him back into the open I tried to fix the switch but it was too late.  He was drenched in sweat from his mental panic.  I got off and walked him for a bit, then got back on him.  He calmed down for a bit, but then went back to prancing.  We were getting close to the barn and I will be darned if I let my horse prance all the way back to the barn.  He can walk his fancy butt there.  So I broke off from the two girls and we had a come to Jesus moment.  I finally got through his mental block and he walked nicely on a loose rein.  He got told he was a good boy, I got off, and ended the nice easy trail ride.

Monday was our first good ride.  I rode him in an arena right behind the barn.  I haven't ridden him in there before and S was giving a lesson in there, so I wasn't sure how it was going to go.  He got a little sticky in the beginning.  This is where he wants to prance in place or lunge forward with his legs going as quickly as possible.  When I try to slow his legs, he shortens his steps, when I try to lengthen his steps he speeds up the tempo.  The best thing I have figured out to fix this is to put him on a tight circle, put my leg on, and hope I don't get dizzy and fall off.  This isn't the most dressagey way to fix things, but it works for now.  He quickly worked out of the stickiness.  And we had bend both direction, which is a huge accomplishment for him.  But best of all we had a lifted back!!!!!!!

When Stinker lifts his back it is amazing!  His trot is springy and floaty and all the wonderful dressage things you can possibly want.  It is the most addicting feeling ever.  It was just for a few steps at a time, but it happened both ways.  He was stretching for the contact and it felt fantastic.

Today I had a lesson with S.  I decided not to lunge him and to just get on and see what happened.  It started off pretty rough.  There was a lot of tension and wanting to canter.  He actually left the ring, which was a first.  I informed him that was not ok which increased the tension.  BUT we managed to work out of it.  And he was willing to bend both ways and was stretching for the contact.  It was not consistent, but we are working on baby steps.  At this point I will take what I can get and I am so proud of my little Stinker.

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