Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Back and better than ever!

...or at least we will be.  The re-start is really paying off in a lot of ways, and even little things are taking leaps and bounds.  It's kind of a strange process because with some of the exercises it takes a little work, but you can really see when Jazz starts to get it (like with moving from her shoulders, which is awesome by the way! she can do full circles to both sides now that she gets it), and with other exercises it takes more time and effort and consistency, but I can see gradual improvement all the time (like with respecting my space, mostly when I'm asking her to change eyes without pushing her shoulder through me), and there are other things that we have essentially done before that she just gets in no time at all.

For example, we've been doing groundwork with Jazz wearing the saddle for the last few lessons, and we do an exercise that involved having the lead rope across the seat of the saddle and working on lateral flexion.  I remember the first time we introduced this exercise, my trainer told me to stand back while she tried it because some horses can get very fussy about it, but Jazz was a superstar!  Once she really had a handle on the flexion, we worked on flexion with a little pressure where the leg goes asking her to move her shoulders, and she was pretty good with that as well.  We also did an exercise with putting the rope around the far side of her body and around the hocks and asking her to calmly turn around to the pressure and come back to face me with no theatrics, just calmly turned back and then waited in her own space.

She's been just awesome for the last while, although not without a few small exceptions.  The occasional warning nip still comes out when she isn't pleased with me, and last week one day and I was working her on the lunge when she started rearing again, but not to worry, I just stuck with her and corrected, and she gave up on it pretty quick and went back to trotting quietly until I was done with her.

But on her good days she has been much better! I've even ridden again a few times, and started up on bridle work again, including breaking at the poll to contact (a noted weak point of hers, but we'll get there).  Just very short rides at a walk, but she seems like she is very nearly back to her old self (with even a few notable improvements to boot).  Onwards and Upwards from here!

No comments:

Post a Comment