Tuesday, July 20, 2010

7/19/10 Romeo Routine

Gathered up Mo, stuck Ransom in the paddock with my apologies. Last time I left Ransom out to play while Mo worked in the arena, Ransom found a way in the arena anyways "to help".

Romeo, in all his western gear, and I warmed up at a walk on loose rein. Romeo reacquainted himself with the arena, the pond, and the tall grass around it. One good walk lap around with a little "lookies", and he settled nicely.

I worked him at all three gaits to warmup, with big sweeping canter circles. His trot was very irregular, but since he's badly out of shape, I couldn't do much to argue about it. There were deer and a fawn wandering in the pasture just outside the arena, but everyone seemed comfortable with the company. Ransom eventually stopped pacing the paddock gate, which was appreciated.

Nicely after our warmup, we were ready to get to business. Settled into a loose rein, I did a boatload of transitions walk/halt and trot/walk. Some were pretty, some were ugly. I trotted him over the trot poles a few times, and in plenty of circles, diagonals, and direction changes. Most of this work was done on a loose rein neck reining, while some of it was on direct rein for gentler transitions. To give him a walk break, and get his mind off "go go go", I did some turns on forehand, turns on haunches, and a couple light rollbacks to trot. All went well, in fact, better than I expected. A benefit of the hours bareback in the side yard reinforcing the little things like those turns.

Finally, I finished up the work with short canter sets. Staying on the big "dressage circle", we rode the canter for no more than 9 strides, before trotting a little while, and right back into the canter. I'm trying to build up his toosh, and improve that canter transition. I got nice canter sets in each direction once he got the idea what game we were playing.

With that accomplished, I let him walk out on a loose rein. We were both sweaty, hot, and generally miserable. It was a warm evening, and I certainly didn't want to overdo it. Total work 45 minutes.

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