Saturday, July 9, 2011

07/07 - 07/09

Harley had a good longe. He longed quite a while before I hopped up there. Good solid work, neck stretcher the majority of it.
We focused on walk and trot, me not wanting to argue with him on his first "work hard day" back. Things went well, nothing spectacular.
Kept it short sweet and simple, since he was in his Myler combo bit. Things with the combo bit are going better. He still doesn't love it, but it's a nice refresher to have something different in his mouth / on his face. Keeps his mind fresh, and ultra observant.

Warmup on neck stretcher only. Things went well.
I hopped on, and we focused on some transitions, but when he got fussy throwing his head and flipping his nose around, I suspected boredom.
We did a BUNCH of serpentines, circles small and large, and on the straight lines I asked for some serious forward collected trot. Very nice results once I took him off the boring "dressage circle".
I asked for canter left on a circle. Correct lead! GO Harley!
I asked for canter right on the circle. More like a pleasure lope it was so slow, cadenced, and delightful. Way to Go Baby Boy!
I should've stopped right there. I really should have.
I asked for canter left. Wrong lead four requests in a row. Frustrated, I hopped off, and put him on the longe line. Asked with a kiss. Got the left lead first ask. Eh?
Rider needs help now instead of the horse. harumph!

Longe work was all transitions. No particular gait more than 3/4 of a circle without a change. I'm working on transitions riding, might as well work on them on the line too. Things went well on the line.
Under saddle, there's still work to be done. I don't know if he's confused by the neck stretcher vs. human hands, or I'm sending mixed signals. It seems the longer we do it, the fussier he gets, and the more he avoids the down transitions, just dragging through them hanging on me.
A solid hour of goodness, anyways. Didn't ask for canter riding. I've recently decided to try not doing it every single ride, so each one isn't ending in an argument if the left canter isn't what I'd like it to be.

This morning, early(!), Romeo and I went for a half hour saddled walk down the road. Made it halfway to second corner of the paved road. He startled Dinner-deer and her twins. Argh.. Dinner ran, Romeo just shuttered a little. Highlight of the ride? Leaving home, he was just scooting along, walking briskly down the road, head down relaxed. Suddenly, he tripped on a front hoof and about did a face plant in the roadway. I think I heard "Oops. guess I better look where I'm going" through the heavy sigh that followed. *laugh* Good going, Mo! Glad you did that today, and not the day we went bareback to the mailbox. :)

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