Friday, October 1, 2021

September Wrap Up

Our FIRST show together! And he was perfect!!!! 

September we had: 
  • 21 rides
    • 2 at Rocking Horse - schooling/sight seeing the day before and then the show 
    • 1 ride-a-test turned into schooling at a dressage arena away from home - also on his best behavior 
    • 2 Cross Country schoolings - Barnstaple on our own then our AWESOME lesson at Majestic on Wednesday. 
    • 4 lessons with JT - continuing to work on softening and bending his body and lifting his withers. I discovered that my seatbones now both make ovals as he walks. I'd been puzzled before whey they didn't and thought I must have stiffened up since learning that feeling at a centered riding clinic as a teenager. Turns out it was that his back wasn't moving. 
  • We introduced Equibands with the idea that if this kept his back up and his hind leg engaged I might be able to unproductively fuss less 
    • 2 lunging sessions - he was fairly explosive in the canter with the bands. In hind sight I should have probably confirmed his lunging before introducing the bands to the mix. I hadn't done more than spin him in a few trot circles to check soundness since I got him. 
Hrmmm why am I halted square? 
    • 5 rides
      • Accidental canter in the third ride that was actually LOVELY and had a beautiful rocking horse motion to it. After that we cantered in the next two rides and it was just so flowing and through. 
      • One that he seemed very angry about the bands and even after I took them off was a bit of a twit bucking and running after jumps. Unclear what was going on, but his tail was ANGRY the whole ride. We quit after one nice soft cross rail. 
  • Some fun corrective exercises from Jec Aristotle Ballou's book
    • Small serpentine over ground poles - poles are in a straight line, tightly serpentine back and forth over them 
    • Figure 8 over cavaletti angling the cavaletti - definitely helped him move and loosen his shoulders
    • Very unsuccessful attempt at raised walk poles on a circle. I only had dressage ring pieces to set the poles on and they fell so often that I just quit resetting. 
    • Straddling a ground pole in hand - left feet on one side, right feet on the other. We had tried this when he was off in March or April. He completely barreled through me then and didn't understand at all. This time he actually was so relaxed he did it mostly with his eyes closed?? When we got the back feet to go on either side and I paused to praise, his eyes were fully closed like he was napping as he was doing it. Don't know if this was truly him "going internally" to process his proprioception of his feet over the pole or if I was there at his siesta time and he was just letting me move his body around. Either way pretty fun. 
  • Overall a good body condition. He's built a lot of muscle and is just slightly under where I want him weight wise. Combination of alfalfa every time we haul (at least once a week), lunch on the days we ride, and his fat supplement. 
  • A few bonding sessions with my husband. Yoshi didn't exactly make a great first (actually third or so time that he was around him) impression with his lunging at him over the stall door with mouth open, so he's had some ground to make up. We took him for an in hand walk around the neighborhood which he was pretty good for and then my husband helped me work on him with the massage gun and helped with the straddling the pole exercise. It was nice that he finally got to see the sweet, calm, soft side of Yoshi too. 

1 comment: