Sunday, February 28, 2016

The Struggle is Real.... and oh so FUN


I cannot decide what to do about poor Flecky. I really thought he was ready to retire. But then today... we went to the Vista to school XC and... my Flecky was back!! He was game and jumped like a beast! We even popped over a few intermediate fences. And... that was with an abscess brewing that got significantly worse by the end. And he was still dragging me around and wanting to do more.

We did lots of fun stuff, and I'm pretty sure there are videos coming soon. :)

Sigh... I love love love this horse... and really want him to be happy and comfy and live a long life of fun and happyness and retire to being my sound trail pony and doing whatever pony. But I also really love riding and jumping him and it's so hard to let go. I'm on the edge of the cliff, and clinging on for dear life, but I cannot make myself just let go.... I really think (but cannot promise) that if we decide to go to sporting days this weekend, and even if it does most wonderfully... I still think I'll retire him from prelim eventing. We may still play around schooling but the pressure of competing at that level is getting to me. I don't want to hurt him, injure him, kill him, etc.... because he's trying his heart out for me. And I know crap happens all the time unrelated to competing, but.. the pressures and maintenance and effort it takes, is taking a toll on me too. It's soooo much responsibility.

But I just cannot decide about sporting days. Although I guess we will see if we can fix his abscess first.

But man.... how I love this beast!!

 And this was after the darn trailer got stuck in the deep sand up the hill. And I had to tie them to the tree to see if I could get it unstuck without their weight. (I couldn't... had to get a tractor to tow me out). And Dan untied himself and went for a short little romp. Luckily only a very short little romp. :)

Saturday, February 27, 2016

dressage lesson with beth

Since Fleck wasn't quite right yesterday we flatted today. And of course today he felt great. Which, phew!

We worked on connection. I put him in the baucher and I think I like it, but I'm not sure. But I had an aha moment!

When I track right, *I* think he is overbent at the neck and his left shoulder is flinging out. So in my attempts to correct that, I hang on that left rein to "straighten" him. Which in essence, makes him hang right back and counter bends him, thus defeating the purpose. But instead if I bring both hands to the right, EVENLY (becaue apparently my brain thinks my hands are even when they are clearly not), this brings his left shoulder around too. It's amazing how well that works actually. At the walk, it's almost like he neck reins. But I have to remember to keep my outside hand down and my inside hand up. (I think.... ). And apparently even though I think he's overbent at the neck and popping that shoulder out, he's just counter bent, so I need to keep the inside flexion a teeny bit.

Going to the left... I need to ride him straighter and not so bent to the inside, even though in my brain, he's going nicely. Same thing as the other way in what I do with my hands.

We got some really nice trot work. and even some nice canter work. :) At the very end, when I was doing the even hand to the right and left thing... he got really quite nice and round and lofty! But I definitely need to keep his nose between his chest and ride him straight!! (I seem to remember Cindy using this visual before with great effects then too). And he needs to stay round!! no more screwing around. When he inverts, just keep my hands with a steady connection and leg leg leg into the bit. He needs to learn that leg means go on the bit.

So yep.. a good ride! And we worked on leg yields too and got some decent ones. I need to LET GO OF THE LEFT REIN to allow him to bend and go left. Sigh...

ONe of these days I'll figure it out and not make myself so backwards and wonky...

Thursday, February 25, 2016

dressage at night

Got done with enough time to sneak in a quick ride.

Lame?? Girth sore bothering him?? Still happy to work but his foot steps sounded uneven and his canter was icky. But we tried the baucher bit and it seemed to be helpful. We'll see. It was a heavy connection but he was actually rounder at the base of his neck. So... We'll see what Cindy thinks of it.

feeling better

 We managed to get our trot sets in and even did some canter work. Then since the map clocker said we only did 8 mph as our max speed... we had to jump some to make sure that we weren't really that slow. So we hopped over a few XC fences in the field. Max speed was 18 mph. I think the clocker was wrong with our canter sets.
 But... while he was feeling fresher, our jumping still wasn't like it used to be. :( Not sure exactly what is going on.... Sigh... Or I know, but don't want to admit it.