Sunday, 7 March 2010

Playing catch up

Sorry! We have been working honest, I've just been rubbish at blogging lol!

After going to the Heather Moffett clinic last weekend I have been fired with enthusiasm and I'm itching to ride....whoa there lady ;-) Even watching the ridden work gave me loads of stuff to work on with B and really helped get some contact issues clear in my mind which will come in very handy once B is backed

During the week we've had a couple of inhand / lunging sessions with much more emphasis on working from the bit and learning feel and contact. We start by having a little play at gentle flexions to make sure B is soft in her jaw and relaxed about the whole thing and then work on a circle asking for a little inside bend (and me constantly reminding myself to use the outside rein!)
We're now getting a nice transition from straight on the circle to leg yielding and shoulder in. I picked up the importance of slowing this lateral work right down, so that each step is precise, with energy and really doing some good by mobilising her shoulders and inside hind leg making her use herself correctly. We only manage a few steps at a time and even now we still get in the occasional muddle, but all in all I'm pleased with our progess.

Yesterday we ventured off out on a lovely long hack - one of those quick walks that just kept going because we were going so well! Bally was a bit looky, but I think she always will be when faced with something new - we just have to work on seeing as much new stuff as possible! Only slightly eek moment was getting over the bridge past the big duck pond. This is a congregating point for people to fed the ducks, geese and swans and you can imagine the racket! We had a lot of stop start dragon snorting and B went to whip round but I was more than ready for her, gave her a sharp correction and immediately asked for a back step then lowered her head and gave her loads of praise. As the road itself was quiet I let her stand for a minute just to look and then tweaked the lead for forwards and got it so on we went albeit a little shakily.

We ended up going all the way down the Easton road to the main road through the village itself, and walked along it til we got to the pub and then up the bridleway to make a circuit of about two miles

Bally was absolutely brilliant in the traffic, never turned a hair as we had cars in both directions, some slower than others, but all giving us a nice wide berth - I was almost hoarse from thanking people (daft I know but I always say it even to people cocooned in their cars)
Back to the field both tired but happy :-) I untacked B and popped some Hi Viz gear and the rope halter on Little Dee just for a pootle up the lane to the house - about 100 yards.

Well its always humbling to see your "lead anywhere" filly suddenly showing holes in all your training when the situation is different!

First thing I noticed is just how enormous her walk is for such a diddy little 'un - her stride is miles bigger than Bally's :-o, which then became a "er ..oh rude one, whilst it's wonderful that you are so bold, we do NOT got hoofing it up the road ahead of me" (well only when we progress to long lining lol!) A bit of a headshaking tussle ensued as she was enjoying herself far too much to appreciate the finer points of good manners and being told off, so Little Miss D got taken into the big layby and we had a five minute reminder of if I say stand I mean stand and back means back. No rope slapping or head beating here though eh Mrs Parelli, I can get control of an excited baby out in the open with voice commands and a bit of body language....maybe I should market that eh??

Back down the road and Dee was now responding to a half halt from a "uh huh" and stopping on a whistle and even when she had a little moment of forgetting herself - the BB and Bally galloping down the field alongside us was too much of a temptation, she immediately came back to a check and a voice cue. We then stood in the layby opposite the gate. I wanted her standing still and attentive, took a bit of work to keep those itchy baby feet still lol! But it didn't take long to have her standing nice and relaxed and then back in we went.
Really pleased with both my girls!

Went to the seaside today with my luffly Hubstar and Spud, walked miles along the beach blowing away the cobwebs...then had another wonderful session with the girlies...what a fantastic day ......will update tomorrow :-)