Friday 14 August 2015

Fun Ride

Midge had Tuesday and Wednesday off due to me being too tired to head to the barn after work. My schedule isn't that bad, it's just poor planning on my part. Time to smarten up!

I went to the barn last night and it was super quiet. It's normally very busy, so it was a bit of a treat to have the place mostly to myself. Since I didn't feel rushed to make space for someone else, I spent some time in the cross ties tidying up Bridget's mane and tail. She's been a little neglected as far as spa days go, so it was nice to spoil her a little with an extended grooming session.

Silly pony faces
When I finally hopped on, for the first time in about forever Bridget stood and didn't move out until asked. Normally we have to play the game of putting her back where we started a couple of times and making her wait. For a lazy pony , she's surprisingly impatient sometimes! So, standing completely still after almost a year of correcting her is a win. I don't expect it will happen again any day soon, so it's posted here for posterity :)

We walked around for a bit to warm up, then I asked her to trot on a loose rein. I have no idea what sort of magic was occurring, but after a lap or two I realized something was odd...I wasn't having to remind the pony to trot at all. So unlike her! I increased the contact, and she braced against me. There's the pony I know. However, she softened fairly quickly and our spirals and first

pass of travers was actually very good for a baby pony. I think she sleeps on things she's learned, because it was light years ahead of what we had on Monday. Canter transition right was weird, because it was soft and light, and we essentially loped off like a western combo. I thought for sure she must be on her left (favoured) lead, because the amount of struggling was essentially zero. Nope, just a beautiful right lead canter. Is someone schooling my pony when I'm not looking? Seriously, I'm used to her leaping into the transition, then motorbiking and galloping when she's not sucking back or switching leads randomly. What a change! The only thing I can think of is that we very nearly wiped out in our lesson Monday night in a disagreement over slowing down and turning (ie not falling in the ditch that runs alongside the arena) so maybe, just maybe, she learned something from that and is trying harder to be a little careful with her feet and a little more willing to listen to her rider.
Looking fitter these days

Going to the left was great as well - none of that bulging and falling in that we had Monday. Canter was wonderful, the first time I've felt like she's been balanced and on the aids the majority of the time. We did a couple of laps and quit with a ton of praise rather than attempt to push for even more. 

Of course I took her over some little crossrails before finishing. Little pony was feeling it and WAY over jumping them and more than happy to canter out. I told her she'll need a better rider than me if she keeps that up , but I think she was having fun because she didn't listen to my pleas for mercy ;) We quit before I made too big of a fool of myself. All in all, only about a 20-30 minute ride, and one of the best I've had on her.

Since I have time to ponder such things, I'm thinking our ride was so good because she was carrying very little tension.  As to why she was so relaxed and happy, I think:

-the barn was really quiet. No one else in the arena. She's still worried about other horses in there with her I think .

-she had a couple of days off. I think she can get a bit tired and fed up if I school her too often.

-we had a productive lesson on Monday. I think she goes back to the barn and figures things out between rides.

-she got her feet trimmed. Her toes were on the flat and longish side behind and were getting a little bruised and sore. Farrier trimmed them up to accommodate/fix that and I think Bridget is happier. 

1 comment

  1. she really is looking great! glad you had so much fun too. sometimes those quiet peaceful nights are really the best