Thursday, March 7, 2019

Ride #22: Lesson in Difficult Times

Ashke loves FlambĂ©’s special nails

Everyone is ready for spring. Birds are having bird sex and building nests. Horses are dropping their coats like it’s eighty degrees outside. Other people are posting pictures of crocus and daffodils on their social media. But here in the land of white, we are still dealing with weather of all kinds. Who would of guessed that the week in January where we had temps close to 65 would be paid for by a week of temps that didn’t get out of the single digits. The ride was also spiced up by the sound of ice sliding off the roof, and the special effects of some mutant duck-rabbit-cat like death screams from outside. (Fox gets rabbit, maybe?) It set the horses off and took the riders in the arena some extra time to get them back.

Ashke and I were both a bit stiff when we started. It was cold in the indoor and the footing was questionable in spots. The indoor is huge and wonderful most of the time, but there is spots where the roofline lets in snow and water, which create spots of mud you have to ride around. Additionally, because of the temps, the footing needs to be watered and dragged, which is really hard to do when the equipment is frozen to the ground. We think, given that the horses that were having issues with the footing both had shoes on and the rest of the horses did not, that the damp dirt was freezing to their shoes, similar to what happens with snow and horse shoes. Ashke had several trips during our ride, like he couldn’t get his hoof out of his way. Mostly at the trot. It made of an uneasy feeling.

We worked on all of the things on our list. He got better as we both warmed up and gave me some really nice moments in the ride. He was also able to give me the opportunity to work through the distraction and frustration of the spook and stare moments. I can say that 1) I am reacting less to his shenanigans, and 2) he is letting it go and getting back to work quicker. His half-pass is improving, but we still struggle to get his shoulder a little fore going from the left to the right. His leg yields were very solid and he is flowing to the side with his body very straight in the movement. We did some changes in a series of diagonal lines around the arena, which got better and better, although he did give me one that was unasked for as we came around a turn and straightened. We worked on transitions within the trot and canter. My biggest issue in the trot is getting him to lift in the front and not just go faster, while my issue in the canter is bringing him back to a more collected gait off my seat. 

This Sunday, provided the weather holds and we get no more freezing rain, Flambe and myself are going to haul into PVF and practice the obstacles. Get exposure to the arena. Make him behave in a new place. 

My horse is so spoiled

1 comment:

  1. I do love their expression when getting scratched in the right spot.

    We are all so ready for spring.


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