Friday, October 24, 2014

Saturday Post-ride Dissection

Circles are our new best friend and worst enemy. Yup, a geometric figure is my frenemy. Mostly because when we get it right, I really can feel the suppling and impulsion benefit to Copper on the straight, and mostly because when we get it wrong – it’s oh, so very wrong…

I’m struggling with that left rein circle - I do know how to fix it (close the outside aids, and ask for outside hind to actively come forwards and help carry weight) but it’s not an easy fix. All that wonderful lateral work to supple him is also wonderful for showing Copper exactly how to evade and escape from working properly!  *sigh*

You would think that the horse would consider bending and sideways harder than bending and forwards, but nope.  :/

Still, he is feeling better and better these days, and I’m starting to consistently find relaxed and rhythmical working trot from him. I even tested it a few times today by releasing both reins forwards, and he was keeping the same pace. So that’s been super exciting and really rewarding.

We also did a leg yield from center line to outside track! There is nothing that makes you feel cooler than a super fancy prancy horse daintily tracking diagonally across the arena(Left to right, fabulous – right to left, needs some work).  Half pass here we come! Lol – yeah right.  :P

His canter transitions are also getting better – I think being able to balance properly on a circle is also helping him to get his hind underneath for a quiet transition. Thus, it stands to reason that his left canter lead is way more explosive and messy than his right at the moment – I think I really need to focus on some left rein work and try to get him stronger and more supple on the left side.

I try to work both sides evenly every ride, but I think for a short while I should almost be working the left side exclusively during the main schooling portion of our ride to really build him up.  Of course, we’ll warm up and cool down on both reins, but I’m going to stop spending so long on the right, and just get *right* back to the left for a while – sort of like a left rein boot camp for the both of us!

Here’s some more schooling footage from today if you are interested:

And yes, this is now a thing. Because honestly, just working on my hands and shortening my stirrups alone have already made such a difference to Copper; I swear he looks twice as nice as he did last Saturday, and my position looks a ton better as well.

My leg still needs work, but I’m almost thinking I might need a dressage saddle. Or maybe it looks worse than it is because Copper’s so round? I don’t know. One moment I think “Yeah, my leg is right underneath me and inline with my shoulder and hip. It must be alright then.” and then I’m all “Ugh, I don’t think it IS underneath me! I look like I’m in a chair seat again!”

So I’m vacillating between good and bad and don’t know if I should be trying to push it back even further. I hesitate because I don’t want end up to pitching myself onto the fork of my pelvis. Oh, well, I’ll try it out next ride and see what happens I guess.

See ya,


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