Had a lesson each this morning, absolutely freezing! Emma and Saf did a lot of circle work today as Saf had taken to falling in on both reins. We concentrated on getting the head between the shoulders first – I used to have a bad habit of trying to ‘pull’ Saf out onto the circle with my outside rein. When I had a lightbulb moment and realised that was incorrect, I abandoned my outside rein entirely, and tried just asking for inside bend with the inside rein and pushing her with my inside leg. Max was getting me to accept that I needed to use the outside rein and that it is a good thing when used in conjunction with the inside rein and inside leg acting as a pillar.Trying to re-programme all this old muscle memory is the story of my life, but I must MUST make an effort to be more co-ordinated. We also observed Saf falling on her right shoulder when going from halt to walk, another thing I must work on stopping. ‘Every movement you ride is a movement you train’.
This was not before Misty Moo was woken at an unsociable hour earlier and evicted from her cosy stable to have her lesson with Claire. They did much the same as Emma and Saf, but a little more groundwork first working on unlocking the upper neck, which Misty really enjoyed (great for a pony who hates being touched). Max commented that Misty reminds her of a small Iberian as she’s so sensitive to the rider’s balance. Also being quite tall on Misty adds an extra challenge trying to remain balanced at all times particularly during transitions. Moo’s answer to the rider being unbalanced is to slow down.
A great morning’s work and lots to practice!