Some big plans are underway for my Super Harley Baby. But what are they? Oooh no. I'm not jinxing my karma here, folks. When we have pictures and video to prove the fun goodiness, I'll share. Until then, I leave your minds with training updates, sure to put a smile on your face. Well, at least until the gun went off..
Monday I caught Harley, dressed him up pretty, and off we went. Another windy howly day, where the trees and brush seem to bend sideways just when he's on that side of the arena. Poor kid.. He's definitely quiet in noisy weather now.
Warm up was nice. Trot poles went well. Neck stretcher was delightful. Watching his little mouth get all slobbery while he longes in the neck stretcher makes me smile, knowing all the muscles are working in that tracking up trot, and the satisfied look on his little face.
I hopped aboard, and we got right down to business. Now that I think about it, I wonder if I've really gone into detail on what a ride looks like for me and Harley right now. It's certainly not lazy days, and I will admit I am slowly teaching him to stand still and wait. Lots of standing around watching the birds and traffic. *cough* sorry.. back to the story. I started him out with a nice loose rein walk, wandering the back 2/3 of the arena. It is dusty and dry at my house, and I saw no need for both of us to ride through the grass-free longe circle anymore. He didn't seem the slightest bit bothered by the back portion of the arena, so I got working.
Nice steady, loose rein trot. Let him find his feet, to which he got lazy, stumbled, tripped, and finally started moving out off my leg squeezing. Responsible for anywhere his feet landed, and finaly moving around at a solid working trot.
I put a little pressure on the reins, to which he lifted his head, and shortened his stride. I added my leg, to which he went back to his normal trot. He tried everything to get away from that bit. Twisting his head, tossing it around, flipping it around ilke a pecking chicken. Turning big, turning tight.. You name it. Finally, after a long battle about fifteen minutes, he gave.
I don't know if it was accidental, or because of all the flexing I'd done, but he gave. Head lowered, nose in, poll bent. I released my reins immediately, and patted his neck with a verbal, "Good Boy!" Shortly after that, I gathered rein again. Another give. Release and praise. Repeat Repeat Repeat.
We reversed direction to trot right, and got back to it. He fought less, but I figured this would be the case, he loves heading right. Quickly I got a nice give, and a very round horse moving forward. Plenty of praise and patting.
It felt like he said, "Oh! THAT'S what you wanted! Got it, Mom! Whew!"