Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Winter, go away!

This morning proved to be just as windy and cold as Anne predicted, and as such Brownie and I were confined to the indoor.  She asked me to give him a hard hack, so that is what I set out to do.  I started out with some walking exercises, lengthening and shortening, brief lateral movements (two or three steps), and spirals.  As we picked up the trot, he was a bit pokey to begin with, not really interested in moving off my leg at all.  Once he began to warm up I asked him to relax his back and move from behind into the bridle.  He wasn't interested in remaining there though and putting in the effort it takes to maintain that impulsion, so it took a lot of effort from me to support him enough to get him moving out.

Once I had him moving out though, the ride began to come together.  He was moving off my leg, lifting his back, and responding to my leg and seat aids so that I would not have to do much with my hands.  At the canter during our first transition, his lifted his head, hollowed his back, and twisted his neck right around C2/C3 in order to evade the bit.  It took two strides for me to get his attention and work ethic back on track.    After a bit of canter work to get him completely warmed up we returned to the trot and worked on more lengthening and shortenings, and he didn't really have any interest in collecting the trot while staying round. After a few minutes though he was completely soft and was collecting both the trot and the canter.  He began to sweat a bit though, and because he is not clipped I decided to stop there.  It would take too long to cool off in this weather!

Brownie pictures coming soon!

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