June 17, 2019

Sunday's Ride

On Sunday I came out to ride Connor knowing he'd be a bit of a pistol after being inside for a couple of days due to the rain.  Fortunately, being a pistol for him is still very manageable.  That's part of the reason I own him!

He had a lot of energy, and kept trying to spook at this white stray cat that was hanging out in the grass outside the indoor.  We'd go past the open door and he'd throw his head up, skitter sideways and prick his ears straight forward in a "using this as an excuse to be crazy" sort of way, not a "I'm actually afraid" kind of way.

THAT earned him a wet saddle pad, and we ended up having a fantastic ride.  Tons of transitions, lots of canter, and one VERY solid C-W tx.  I'm currently working him in a knockoff version of the Bombers bit that Leah is graciously letting me borrow, and it's a definite improvement over the old Neue Schule.

Showing his preference for my trainer's riding and French leather in a demo ride on the CWD Dressage saddle

A couple of position things I'm working on:

- My trainer gave me a very effective first toolkit lesson in which she demonstrated and then walked me through, body part by body part, how to put him together.  One of the things we identified is that I am still giving through my shoulders and letting him pull me.  If I thought about the energy of the mouth "moving" at the walk going all the way through to my shoulder blades, I got way better connection.

- I'm starting to recognize that part of the reason he drifts to the right all the time is that my right thigh is never inwardly rotated and on the saddle.  This is way more obvious in the jump saddle than in my old Dressage saddle.  When I get my thigh on him and have good connection, I get good bend.

In particular, that C-W tx happened when I set him up for the W-C tx by putting my right thigh on him, getting the left hind underneath him and almost thinking counterbend before setting off into the transition, and then thinking about doing the same in the downward.  More to explore there in the future I think.

1 comment:

  1. I spent over a week chipping away at Penn's bend issues in SI and HI tracking left. I figured out he wasn't actually in my right rein, but had no idea how to fix it. I messed around with that thinking on Madonna and as soon as I get myself right (usually evening up those knees of mine to even the seat bones!) She immediately connects to that outside rein and I can feel the arc from ears to tail. It's a great feeling!