Thursday, October 25, 2018

Bend and Snap

I hauled Peebs over to A's place last Saturday for a lesson.  My trainer asked what I've been working on since our last lesson and what I wanted to work on for this lesson.  I answered that we haven't been doing much (Cinder kicked Peebs in turnout and he was off for a few days) and I had no idea what I wanted to do in the lesson. Since show season's over and we won't be back in the show ring for months, I'm kinda meh about doing much. 

Totally didn't plan to match my outfit to the jump or the trees

A's lesson had been before mine and they had a flat lesson focusing on forward and bending (A's horse is sloth-2x4 hybrid) so Trainer carried that over to my lesson.  We strung a few fences together working on getting him forward and bending/straight as was called for.  After warming up our first exercise was a single diagonal plank to an outside four stride.  A's arena is narrow so the turn from the diagonal to the outside line was more rollback-like than a normal.  It was also a left hand turn, which Peebs loves to over bend and drift out on. To top it off, A had gotten new footing and it was a touch deep in places and Peebs was using that as an excuse to quit on me.

Showing off our lovely downward canter-trot transitions.

We did the outside line first by itself a couple of times to get the feel of it before adding in the plank. The first time going to the line I went too deep on our approach and lost his outside shoulder, causing Peebs to over bend and drift out in the line making the four very long.  We had one Jesus-take-the-reins moment were I was sure he'd chip for a five but God bless him he launched over the oxer. Once Trainer told me to think about shaving the turn on the approach with a touch of counter bend, I was able to figure it out.  We then put the plank first, and I have no idea what I did or how I did it, but we nailed it on the first go.  The rollback felt amazing, he didn't over bend and pop his shoulder, and I kept the impulsion the whole way through.

A post shared by Molly Basney (@mollybasney) on
We moved on to another single diagonal to an outside one stride.  The diagonal was set on a little bit of an odd approach; you had to go deeper than you thought to get to it and it really invited the horses to over bend and drift out. And boy did Peebs accept that invitation.  I could  keep his straight down the rail, but as soon as I turned to approach the vertical, he over bent and twisted on me. Since flying changes are still a work in progress, Trainer wanted me to try and land on the new lead over the fence. It took four or five tries to get it.  Each attempt was better than the time before but I just couldn't quite get there.  Finally Trainer told me to think about landing and doing a rollback and that made it click in my head to look right and open my right rein. And, what do you know, we got the right lead.

Not the time I got the lead over the fence, but one of our many attempts