Monday, August 23, 2010

Working on the weekend

I'll get some pictures and things up soon of the rescue expo at the Montgomery County Fair (Kieran was a star! Who's surprised?) but in the mean time, here's me talking about our lesson yesterday. :)

Now, we only rode for about a half hour (and my legs were DYING by the end of it, I was sure we'd gone longer than that but Christina assured me she'd only planned for a half hour lesson since she figured we'd do a lot of no-stirrups work and I wouldn't make an hour, LOL).

So, I mentioned rating his canter (which I think I've talked about before). She said okay and had me get him to canter and then work on half-halting (but using my legs to keep him moving) to slow down and then use my seat and legs to speed up again.

Guess who proved me wrong and did it really well (I think only once or twice did he seriously try to break back into a trot and even then, a squeeze with my legs and a push with my seat kept him moving)?

So we started schooling walk->canter transitions instead. Without stirrups (mostly for the leg-work for me and because I have a tendency to draw my legs up and lose my stirrups anyway so I think Christina wanted me to work on pushing them down without considering the stirrups). We haven't really done walk->canter transitions. Pretty much every other time I've asked for a canter, I've done it out of a trot so we had to go back to what we did when I was originally asking for canter transitions from him. Really strong outside leg cue, maybe tap with the crop, etc. He figured out pretty quickly that I'd be asking him to speed up so a "working walk" wasn't too difficult to get out of him. :)

Anyway, by the end of the lesson, Christina's yelling at me, "push your leg down!" and I'm like, "I'm trying!" but I couldn't make it go so we backed off the cantering.

And then she made me post around the ring with no stirrups. I about fell over.

We finished walking him out with me on the ground because I wasn't entirely certain I could keep myself up there any more. =P

Come to think of it, though it was hard at the time, I don't think I could've worked myself all that hard because my legs aren't sore today. Huh. Something to keep in mind. :)

Anyway, with the renaissance festival starting up this weekend, I'm switching back to doing lessons on weeknights so I'll go back again on Thursday. Not sure what I want to work on, yet. Possibly Christina is going to bring her horse (he needs the workout too), in which case we might work on that whole "standing where I tell you to and not necessarily right on top of the horse beside you" thing.

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