One of our biggest works in progress right now is cantering fences. I get nervous and tighten up; Peebs is convinced cantering around the arena is way too much work and the littlest touch from me is an excuse to break to the trot. Then I have to kick him back up to the canter and he gets offended. Then we're quick and rushy, and usually crooked and not balanced. Which makes me even more nervous. It's a fun cycle. We got downgraded to ground poles, because cantering them doesn't scare me nearly as much as actual jumps. Our instructions for now are to Make Him Go Forward, at all costs. Trainer doesn't care about his bend, or our distance to the pole, or even what lead he's on. She says Peebs has to canter till I actually ask him for a downward transition and I have to relax my hands and arm and let him go to the "fence". Because of the weather and the holiday I haven't had a lot of opportunities to jump, but our few attempts have steadily gotten better.
|And some bareback No Stirrups November|
We had a great dressage lesson last Monday. We focused on getting Peebs extra round and deep, then softening and letting him carry himself. We got our first steps of actual self carriage. His left lead canter was amazing; I was able to sit still and let him carry himself. He was so soft and light in my hand, definitely the best he's ever felt. Even our right lead canter had moments of brilliance where he kinda got it, but it's for sure a lot more work then the left. Which is better than the week before where he refused to bend right at all in the canter. Baby steps.
|But how can you stay mad at that face?!?|