Well Behaved Ponies
I love my ponies!
All of the horses I worked today were wonderful. The morning started off with Studly, who was the most relaxed and willing he’s ever been. He was quite excited at first, probably because it was still unbearably cold. When we got to the arena he tried to rip away from me, so I unclipped him and let him have some fun. In less than a minute he was back at my side, ready to work. That’s the fastest he’s ever committed to me. I lunged him while I waited for Jo to arrive and he was brilliant. Spot on transitions, calm stretching work, complete focus. He didn’t miss a beat when Jo came through the gate, which usually causes great upset. Jo took over lunging, again with no change, while I stood by the mounting block. After Jo tested out his responses to her, they walked over and we got to work. I didn’t sit on him because Ron wants me to wait until he gets back to add anything else, but today would have been a perfect day to walk off. He was so relaxed! Almost bored. I loved the change, because I was starting to wonder if he would ever trust us.
Annie was my next horse. She always makes me smile. That little pony was wild today! I didn’t ride her yesterday because of arena conflicts and weather, so I was expecting her to be a bit fresh. She trotted off before I could get my far stirrup, but because she’s Annie and can do no wrong it was easy to shape her energy. We had all of our usual steering plus a bit more, probably because we were alone in the arena. I love this little mare so much! I only had about twenty minutes to ride her because I had to fit all of my rides in before one. It was a very productive twenty minutes, though!
Avery was third. He was tired after yesterday’s show, which was fine with me. We got some nice work. I think we’re finally ready to start schooling changes in series again. We did a lot more work in the canter than we probably should have but I couldn’t stop! It was so nice to have an available horse. We worked a lot of small circles and canter serpentines. I did the changes instead of counter canter loops because it’s fun and easier to show off (there were unfamiliar faces in the viewing booth). He was so much fun today!
Abs was even well behaved. That was probably the most exciting part of the day because she’s never well behaved. We did have to canter around a good bit because she kept sucking back and moving sideways, but for her that’s quite reasonable. We had some excellent work into the bridle with fairly consistent half-halts. She didn’t spook at the show blowing in through the gate or the salt truck driving past. She did slip and nearly go down over a frozen patch, which I somehow saved by misinterpreting as a spook and kicking/yelling so she jumped back up. At least I saved us? After that she kept wanting to spook at the marks she had made, but she was forward enough that I was able to contain it. John thinks she’ll be sore tomorrow because, in his words, “she’s a wimp.”
Three great rides and one wonderful training session. This is why I train horses. I feel so accomplished!