Friday, May 21, 2010

First SC school in 8 months

I know I’ve trained my horse right when I can ride him in a hackamore and still get a beautiful, collected canter. I know even better when I can tie a leadrope to his halter, jump on bareback, gallop, and quickly halt with no argument. We were rescuing a camera case. He is indeed awesome.

So yesterday I woke up and saw how beautiful it was outside and knew our XC school would go splediferously.

I went and got Patchy and Lauren and we were off, after a very frightening adventure trying to turn the trailer around at her barn. MY GOODNESS, it was difficult. To turn around I had to back past her car, through a gateway, DOWN a hill, trying not to run the trailer off the ledge or hit the fence. But alas, my backing prowess got us through :P

After we arrived at Twin Towers park, we started off with a warmup, with the sheriffs shooting near us (target practice). Our horses were golden, didn’t even bat an ear. This is why they are awesome.We moved to baby jumps to get the kinks out and onto a swift gallop. Yankee does not like when horses are in front of him, lol. Racehorse in him.

I won’t say much more, but that the 8 months off did Yankee well. I, however, am still getting my strength back, so I didn’t ride the best yesterday. We conquered prelim fences though! We are ready for the season. Enjoy the pics!

Doesn't he look happy? Tiny Training level fence

Lauren and Patchy over a Training level fence

Solid Training fence

Good sized Training level fence Yanks did well over

FAVORITE pic! His least favorite type of fence though

A mAsSiVe prelim fence Yanks cleared with room to spare!

Another huge prelim fence he breezed over

His new trick!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Beginning to a very horsey summer!

Well after this winter and Yankee being handed from Grace to Lauren, he is in tip top shape and ready to rumble this season. Lauren spent a lot of time this winter giving him a much needed break from constant dressage schooling, and really just focused on keeping him happy and comfortable. She spent a lot of time legging him up for me, and for that, I am grateful!

Lauren conditoning Yankee this winter

So now, summer is quickly barreling its way here and I have already sent my entry in for Spring Run HT on June 12-13. This will hopefully be the one of many HT this summer.

This is a bittersweet summer however, because we will be moving back to Missouri to finish up school and there are like 2 shows in Missouri that I could possibly attend. Maybe I could turn Yankee into a barrel horse....BA HA, right. But in all seriousness, I have considered the options and tossed them back and forth many times and I feel that if I am to make it in the future, I need to have a backup plan. Which is my degree.

Enough of that though, I've ridden twice since I've gotten back to Ohio, and MAN am I SORE! taking a good 7 months off riding is not conducive! I took Yanks for a hack Sunday, and yesterday trailered him to a local arena to school dressage with Lauren and one of her project horses this year.

yankee and me
Some trot work to warm up

Lauren on her Hunter, Zippy

He was a complete angel! We warmed up with some long, low circles at the trot and canter and he felt just amazing. He was truly on the bit, seeking contact and connecting through his back. I couldn't stop thinking, "if only he was this relaxed and through at shows, we'd be golden". For the main school, I decided to concentrate on mixing up transitions and practicing our halts. To get him in gear, I did figure 8's at the canter with simple changes and progressed to trotting down long sides, turning in, halting at X, moving immediately into a trot and reversing direction. We did this a few times then I switched it up by asking him to canter from the halt (which he did like a pro), canter down the long sides, turning down centerline and halting at X, repeat. After a few times of this, instead of canter from halt, I walked to C or A asked for a trot, then asked for shoulder-in or shoulder-for down the long side. He is getting SO GOOD at this! He can trot the whole long side now, it's amazing how strong he is now. But anyways, that was our workout and he was stellar. I couldn't believe it!!!

Some very nice canter work

Our horses are legit homo's