The last few weeks we have been really pushing the bending thing with O. Especially to the left she prefers an oh-so-attractive bulging shoulder instead of bending nicely to the inside.
In my mind this is also setting us up to have the ability to get the nice lead changes and canter that we need. So last night when I managed to get into breeches (yay sunburn healing) and get on my pony I wasn’t sure what to expect. Some days are great, some days it’s like riding a log…a big crooked log with a bad attitude.
Last night she was very forward, but she was agreeable and gave lots of nice bendy circles at the trot and canter. So in my mind I thought I’d take her through a few figure eights with trot changes in the middle to further that work. Heading right to left, I crossed the center line, changed the bend with a half-halt thrown in, and got the most at ease, chill lead change of my life.
And it wasn’t even against the rail, it was in the middle of the freaking ring and specifically when I asked.
I walked her, gave her about a thousand pats, and praised my genius horse for all to hear for getting her first “on purpose” lead change. I asked, she gave. It was awesome.
That said, I had to try the other direction now, and she did struggle more getting her hind end swapped. But with a trot step would quick change and move right along easy peasy. So we are kind of there? Like an almost half-way point? At least she understands what I’m asking for, if not how exactly to give it to me. Progress is progress to me.
So a very nice surprise!
I pretty much called it a night after she was so cooperative.
However, there was a second surprise of the night….
Yes. That is bird poo on my lovely horse’s head. She was birdie bombed at some point during our ride and apparently didn’t care. I was just glad it wasn’t a few more feet back. Poor horse has no dignity left, as I made her stand, take pictures, and then text everyone about it. And don’t worry, both bridle and beastie got a nice bath for their efforts (picture seen at top).