Monday, October 27, 2008

10/23/08 Chewie

I decided this was the day ... There would be no more avoiding it. If I was letting Romeo gallop me around his pasture, I could surely hang onto the saddle, and let Chewie canter me free in the round pen. He's been stopping on a breath and "whoa", and if I say "Shh", he breaks to trot. Shoot, I can exhale and say "easy boy" and he'll break to trot. He hasn't been bad since Mr Don started healing his right front hoof, and I need to learn to trust the big moose.

Lunge warmup free, lunge warmup in side reins, and I jumped on. I asked for walk, trot, canter, all to the left, then went to the right. Walk, trot, (exhale), (deep breath), (saddle horn grip), (switched reins & horn-hand for balance sake), kiss-kiss, squeeze. He broke into the canter, right-lead. He had his head down, and I didn't really appreciate how low he had it, so I tugged on the reins a little bit, and nudged him with my inside leg. He picked his head up, and it seemed like he fought me a little bit, all still in canter. We worked around the pen once, and he broke to trot. I wasn't "done" in my mind with canter-right, so I growled at him a little bit (grr.. quit that), and went right back into canter with a kiss & squeeze. About half the round pen, and I said, "shhhhh", and he broke to trot. I wanted the gait break to be my idea and not his, so he wouldn't get into a habit.

Finished up the right with trots long & low, and even a little WP jog. He was sweaty and tired when we were done, a little over an hour. An accomplishment to say the least...

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