If you saw the short snippet last night, you know the good news. I got Ransom out after work, got him all wrapped, dressed, and warmed up.
Hopped on, and found him a little stiff & stickie. He had Wednesday off, after a tough dressage day Tuesday. Figuring he just needed a longer warmup, I pushed him forward, and he broke gait a few times. Geez whiz, sure is a lazy bum.
I know just what'll cheer him up & get those legs stretched out. I set up a cavaletti rail 8" up (two stackers), vertical pole, right where the crossrail had been. Got him up in canter, got me up in two point, practiced a few releases, and headed to the cavaletti.
Point, squeeze. drat!
Ransom broke to a trot *right* in front of the cavaletti, stepped over it, and trotted away. Stinker booger monster! I halted him, and regrouped. To get him to realize it was "ok" to canter over, it was going to take a little motivating from me to get him out forward over it.
Back to a 2point trot, up in 2point canter, kiss kiss kiss, look at the jump, I said to Ransom, "Look. Look. You see it? Now, let's go!" I kissed to him softly a few strides in front of the fence.
Jump! Well, *laugh* No, not really a jump. More like an extended stride with a little elevation. *giggle* But he didn't break gait, and he stayed in canter away. I repeated this a few times, with no break in stride. Took a little trot and walk break to think. There were some things I didn't like about him, or me, and they needed some attention.
Shoulders, releasing, and most of all EYES. I wasn't looking, again. Not at the ground, not at the treetops, nothing. As we were landing, I was looking sharp to the right. Ransom was answering, trying to lean his body and quickly turn. I'm sure he saw the other cross rail set up, and thought that was his cue - to go get it.
I got back into a 2point canter, skipped the cavaletti a time or two, and then did it again. One good, two leaning, on three he broke to a trot again. Back to a walk, regroup. It was me, all the way, entirely, 100%. I didn't kiss to him in front, I'd become loose in my legs, and I wasn't concentrating.
Back up to canter, and I told him, "It's been a long ride, sweetie. One more jump, and I'll let you quit." Look, eyes, heels, shoulders.. Up & over. That time, he most certainly without doubt, JUMPED. I looked up to the top left of the treetops over the fence, and until the second stride away, I didn't look right. He's too tuned to my body language, and I don't need tight turns just yet. I need straight lines. The last fence, the last jump, I promise you I saw white feet. Only white on Ransom - his back feets. I swear I saw his back end, and white feet. How did that happen? I haven't a clue. But I promise, I saw whites.
We did it! We did it! We Did it! I've cantered a jump. Not a big one, Yeah I know.. But that's serious progress! I'm totally thrilled with myself. Equally, I'm elated with Ransom. He didn't take off heading to the cavaletti, he didn't take off heading away. At no point did I feel "out of control", like he was going to run away with me, or it was faster than I could go with. YAY!