Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Is It Real?

I did not get to ride today but I did ride yesterday for a short time and boy oh boy was I happy with my horse.

We worked on our stopping some more, and he was pretty nice at the walk at all times. We are still back up crooked but I think I know why now.  He tends to be wiggly going forward and so if he isn't perfectly straight beneath me when we start our back, he ends up going towards the opposite side of where ever he is facing.  That is what I think anyway.  I may have to have someone watch me to see if they see it too.

 I decided to bump us up to a trot and although it took a little bit of time, he was giving me some nice very ones so I didn't drill drill drill  like I did last week.  A few nice stops and I left him be.

Since we had not been riding very long I thought, "What the heck, let work on those spins again."

So I moved him in our circle, nice and steady trot consistently soft and spiraling downwards.  Then I opened my inside leg, pushed with my outside, guided with my outside hand, and I guess I opened with that inside hand as well.

(Insert heavy sigh here)

Have you ever heard your horses thoughts in your mind when you ask him or her to do something?

On this day, at that moment in time... I heard him as clear as a bell.  

He said, "Oh she wants this, I can do this...I know I can."

And the next thing I knew he was doing it!  His butt was still and his front was moving and we did a full 360 and I literally could feel the determination pulsing from his body and mind.  We connected.

I was ecstatic!  I yelled out a little yeehaw, gave him lots of praise and rode him out of it.  

Then we tried the other direction. This time we only made it half way before he fell out, but still it was a fair effort on his part.

So I rode him out of that one and we just trotted a little asked for a couple of more stops, he blew me off on the first one, (just so full of himself I am sure! LOL) but then the next two were perfect.

I decided to try one more spin so we circled again, this time the same direction as the first (I can't tell you right now if it was left or right).  We circled, and we circled and I asked again, this time with confidence and this one was even better than the first! We rode out of it, I jumped off and hugged my horse.

That was it, we called it a day.  I think we rode maybe 45 minutes tops, but I didn't care.

I put him away, gave him a treat and went in the house to let what had just happened process in my mind.

Did he really do it right or was he coke bottling again?

I tried to replay how it felt in my head.

It felt solid. It felt really solid

How do I know?

I have never sat on a horse that was executing a correct spin, so how do I know how it is supposed to feel?

 I don't.

All I know is that it felt different than any other time we had tried it before.

Tomorrow I will try again, and this time I will record it so I can see what is really happening.

I don't know if it was real.

What I do know is that his determination was real.  It was so strong and so tangible you could have picked it up and played ball with it.


  1. High five! Don't you love those breakthrough moments?
    I could use one with Rio right now!
    As far as the back up goes, when you feel him push his hip out when backing, just stick your leg back there and ask him to put it back in line with his body. If you are backing crooked, don't just stop, he might think you are rewarding and that he was doing as you asked; make the correction and as soon as he gets it, then stop. A really good exercise is to set up a barrel and back around it (not too close!). It's a really good way to focus on hip control because he won't want to bump into it.

  2. When you feel it, you just FEEL it. And when it is right, it feels different, better and good. And when it feels different, better and good, now you know what you are feeling for.

    Backing up- you can use the barrel as Shirley suggests or use the fence. Back him along the fence a few steps, off the fence a few steps, straight a few steps, towards the fence a few steps... depending on where you are in the arena. Just like your stops- Change it up, as to where you ask for it and what you ask for. Don't always ask for a back when you stop, don't always stop in the same spot... Leaps and bounds lady! YAY!