Second, responses to my post yesterday were incredible! I didn't have time to respond to everyone, but know I did read them all! Very insightful information. Guess I need to hop to writing a will.
In other news, I rode a horse! And it was mine!
Sadly, was not Bacardi, but I do always enjoy hopping Yankee every now and again even if I am rather riding unfit.
Quick sidetone on B; he IS healing and I am grateful for that! He is 100% weight bearing at this point and a lot less miserable, and 100% sound at the walk. I of course got excited, and tossed him on the lunge with just a halter and within 2 seconds of trotting I could easily see that he was still 90% lame at the trot. WHOMP WHOMP. Though soundness at the walk is good. It means we can increase his turnout to all night in the paddock and he can finally get out of prison. He's been wonderful this last week, and has actually enjoyed getting groomed and loved on, since thats all I can do with him right now. He also is saint for bandaging and I am grateful for that too since the hole has not filled in yet and he will have to stay bandaged. Pretty sure I spent over a $100 on gauze and duct tape in the last two weeks though....
This weekend V is heading to Team Challenge with EME and I am super stoked for her! I actually rode two years ago in this on Amy's horse Steady, since she had just had surgery. It was so much fun and I had never catch rode before! It is one of my favorites and over the years I have always had a blast on Yankee.
We came together yesterday to work on some last minute flatwork before they head out, since her scores are still not where they could be. Part of this is due to her greenness at this level, which is 100% OK, and the other is due most likely to his colic surgery. V has primarily been riding him since then and he's been allowed to skimp on things like energy and straightness for quite some time. Scores in the 30s are possible, we just need to figure out how to get them there together!
I am actually thoroughly impressed with V, don't think otherwise. She has been working really hard and has gotten much better about putting everything together to get the package. For one, she can actually get all her transitions, and for the most part have a round horse. When she doesn't she knows what she has to do and does it before I can correct her--which is huge! The only thing I really have to remind her on is her inside hand creeping, which I also do.
If you have four minutes, here's a clip of us working on the trot, which is is worst gait. The first minute or so is actually pretty entertaining, but otherwise its mostly the same things--ask ask, correct, get for a few strides, lose, repeat. You know, training stuff.
From the ground I have noticed that he has taken to two particularly bad habits recently...
1. Diving on the forehand when he doesn't feel like working
2. Popping his right shoulder out to tracking left
|classic shoulder pop|
For now, I don't think V can correct those things swiftly, but she is getting better at asking for more energy, which is the beginning of working on things. Ultimately, as long as he's not shuffling along, his trot is acceptable and I am pleased with her progression and learning :) Dressage is hard yo.
Afterwards, I hopped on to try and figure out the shoulder popping and serious straightness issues, especially at the canter.
First off, I give V mad props for progressing how she has; Yankee is THE wiggliest horse on the planet right now and getting him to simply trot with energy was like asking him to jump the moon. Not sure if he's just gotten away with laziness, but damn, I was huffing by the end of my ride.
Secondly, I essentially had to ride a VERY strong counterbend to get any semblance of correct left lead canter, so this is something I will be trying to work on weekly I think. I would counterbend for half a revolution then release my inside hand as a reward and repeat. Eventually I got him to lift his shoulders a little and actually work that inside hind.. but DAMN, he is weak and CROOKED.
|Struggle bus to be correct. Note the reward release here|
|Easier this direction, but a little flat|
That explains the diving down a little bit.
I then tried to get some semblance of correct trot (using the butt, rounding, energy) but was met with tension and I conceded. I knew I wasn't going to ride well enough to work on his worst gait, so I left it for another day and ended taking him for a walk.
|Still a bit on the forehand|
I was super happy to ride at least--its been over 3 weeks! I also got to try out my ew half chaps (my old ones were SO dead) and the Roeckls I bought. I now see why everyone loves them...they're amazing.