Church was early, and I didn't have any good reason to hang around, so once again, I took advantage of the unscheduled free time. Ran home, changed quickly, and scrambled to the barn. ( o O Again, I could've laid around the house, washed clothes, walked the dogs, watched tv, ripped a handful of CDs and stuck them on my mp3 player, but nope, back to the boys again. O o )
Things went good with Ransom, for the first 40 minutes. I had completed nearly everything I wanted to work on.
Diagonals - corner to corner
Counterbending on the circle at the walk
Canter on contact, both directions
Trot to walk transitions
Got started on transition work, when he decided that was about time to stop cooperating. He started fighting the bit, avoiding contact (which led to more counterbending work), avoiding my leg to keep forward motion (which led to more canter, looking for his gas pedal, and I swear one of those strides, his rear lifted up in the air with some effort), and generally being a stubborn dork. Including warmup, it had been about 50 minutes of work when he wanted to quit. I had only accomplished transition work on the circle heading right, and had left circle left to improve on. After about ten minutes of arguing, he gave in, and relaxed for about four good transitions in and out, and I walked him on a loose rein for another five.
Puffy, sweaty, and generally not happy with his situation, I let him munch some lawn grass before turning him loose. As for unhappiness, we were both there. He was mad he had to work so much, I was annoyed I couldn't get him to mind me. Still, not a complete washout of a work session.
Perhaps tonight we'll pack it out in my hunter saddle, twisted full cheek, light to no contact, and see if mixing it up doesn't help. More walk, little trot, perhaps no canter. If the ride out goes well, I might let him walk around outside the arena as well.
How do ya'll balance it? Do your horses get "bored"? Is that even possible? Do they get annoyed with the repetition? Need different routines every day to avoid frustration? Or is it just dullness from the same work over and over?