Wednesday, August 21, 2013


Later in the evening, I was able to take Harley out to the arena.  It was fairly warm, in the mid 90s, but we had a solid 15mph breeze, and shade on the lower half of the arena.  Good enough for me!

Jump saddle, and about 45 minutes.  He longed nicely, just lazy.  I walked him out a bit, checking my body position.  When I asked him to trot, he sprang forward, just like I've been asking him to.  I started to curl my body up, and sit deep on my butt.  Ahh, legs slipping all around the saddle.  I sank down into my heels, leaned slightly forward, and viola!  There it was!  The body position I used to have. 

Conclusion?  Harley is giving a bigger trot than he previously was.  This is terrific, and exactly what I want.  My body just wasn't ready for it, apparently.  I physically responded unconsciously by curling up into the "I'm going to fall off and die soon" posture, and thus my legs had no way of balancing and lengthening.  It's not something that can be fixed by "dropping my stirrups" -  that just sends me long & low like a dressage body position, heels down, legs around Harley's barrel, riding along perfectly find.  Holding my heels down in the short stirrups and sitting slightly forward is a whole new lesson to learn. 
On the upside?  No spurs, and no dressage whip needed.  I could simply tap him with my calves and he'd burst forward.  Fantastic! 

We got a bit of nice trot in 2point, but his canter is still weak once I left up out of the saddle.  Something we need to work on, and other than audibly kissing to him, I'm not 100% sure how to stay in 2point and keep him moving forward.

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