Wednesday, December 29, 2010
The consistency has been good for me and it's been phenomenal for my Cricket.
On Sunday, as I blogged earlier, we just played at liberty and then a little on-line.
Monday I went out and brought out both girls. I stripped off Bleu's blanket and put both horses at liberty in the arena. Bleu was content to munch hay over the wall but Cricket wanted to be with me. After brushing the mud off Cricket, I haltered Bleu and allowed Cricket to munch hay.
I played with some traveling circle games and obstacles. Bleu gets skeptical and rather than address an obstacle, she tries to duck out of it. With Cricket, I'd almost rather she ducked out and kept her forward. But for Bleu, I'd almost rather she stopped to think about it rather than plowing forward. I never made her feel wrong but kept adjusting the circles to "force" her to address the bridges, jumps, barrels, cones, etc. She became much more fluid and I called it a win. We did a little with her canter on-line and then I saddled her up.
It was my first ride on Bleu in my Natural Performer and my first ride on Bleu since my October camp. She was a champ! We walked and trotted around a little before we stumbled on a little game with Cricket. Cricket, still at liberty, was bothering some of the other folks in the arena. I grabbed a stick and when I went to drive Cricket away, she kind of startled at the stick and string. Hmm, how interesting. I used Bleu to herd Cricket around the arena until Cricket would stand and accept the friendly game from Bleu's back.
At a win spot, I dismounted from Bleu and took both horses over to the rail. I unsaddled Bleu and put her away with some hay and then saddled Cricket. We did some FTR and corners game at the walk and trot and then some FTR at the canter. I am getting more and more comfortable with a true freestyle canter, at least on the right lead.
Ed wanted to ride a passenger lesson on Honey so I picked up a CS to be able to defend Cricket's space. We continued with some FTR at the trot and Cricket was pretty accepting of the stick. It just felt right so I asked her to pick up the canter and we cantered, for the very first time with a CS in hand. The second time, I even asked her for the downward transition with the CS. WOO HOO!!!
Yesterday, I played with her on-line, at liberty and under saddle. We had a long day with intermittent appointments so everything kind of runs together.
She's becoming more consistent with liberty circle games at the canter. We're missing just a few ingredients to get a FLC.
She's getting more solid with her "jump half way."
We're still struggling with left lead canter both on-line and under saddle. She's tipping her nose out and leaning on her inside shoulder. I tuned her up a bit at the trot and then tried to figure it out on a left hand circle. Part of it is me and I think part of it is a habit Cricket has developed because of me. I need to work on getting her more supple on a left bend. Hmm . . . might need to make some room for some serpentines and I might need to consider putting her back in a bridle for a little while.
Can't wait to get out there tonight . . .