Thursday, 21 April 2011

Shaping up for Summer


I have had a week now where the art and the riding have both taken a back seat, so was delighted to be back in the saddle tonight.

Even more so when we got there and decided to take them to the outdoor school for the last half hour of light on a beautiful sunny day.

Bombproof Arnie  and I lead the way, the brave boy of the herd.

We are still collectively on our flat work roll, and as a credit to our instructor Kerry, it is still something a little different every week. We ride a lot more in our own formation to begin with, working alongside each other of transitions, leg yields, circles and the like, somehow Kerry with eyes on all of us, always asking questions "How did that shallow loop feel to you then?" I ponder "Felt like he might have led too much with his shoulders" I hazard? "That's right, he slowed down too"she points out. Yes, he did that, and I think that means he was moving out to the side too much, not forward all starts to make some kind of sense this strange language week after week.

Then, usually we move on to work at a canter with and this week came up good with cantering in straight edged 'shapes' again.  Squares first - no cones, you had to work it out yourself  as you go, loose focus and you round those corners off very quickly  - and then harder still triangles. Amazing what a difference an extra 30 degrees makes on a turn, it certainly  made us all work a lot harder. Leg on hard for the straight edges, and strong inside leg to push them around the tight angle, a little outside leg if the back end drifted too far, then quick as you can, leg on hard again for the straight side. Sometimes it worked, sometimes I lost it and dropped out of canter, but it was such hard work we were not that fazed when it happened.

hazelden horses
We were all exhausted, and most extremely sweaty and grateful for the cooling air as we walked them up the lane to turn them out for the night as there is finally enough grass.  As we turned them up Pablo and Larry charged to say hello, with Pablo screeching to a halt a foot a away from the electric fence, the recent shock of an encounter with it yesterday fresh in his mind. I am thinking of getting one fitted on the fridge, or perhaps the biscuit tin to get in shape for summer.

Happy horses, happy riders, summers a coming.

No comments:

Post a Comment