Rode the boy today. I LOVE having a ring with footing to ride in. It's close by, there's no pastures to hike through to get there, and you don't have to go out in it, move a horse, then finally get to ride in it:) Moved the jump from its akward not anywhere near the center position, and put it on the outside track, in the center. That way, it's easy to get to off either lead, and you're not diving into a pile of footing upon landing. Let Tiki warm up on a loose rein. He seems very stiff to me. Did some carrot stretches today, and usually his neck pops, but he seemed to have difficulty bending his neck to get the carrot; no pops. I think Joyce is going to get the chiro out soon, and Tiki will definitely be on the list.
Anyway, he was quite good. No antics at all today; just focus. I cleaned his nose out really well with a baby wipe, and I think his head shaking was just a little bit better. He shook once or twice, but not on a constant basis. The trot felt really good, and I alternated lots of half turn in reverse; circle; serpentine; and figure 8. Cantered both leads beautifully, and did a bit of circle work at the canter. Came down to a trot and headed to the vertical. I guess it was about 2'. He felt GREAT over it. Went over a few more times, then cantered in. I made a conscious decision to let go of his face and see how it went with me NOT holding him down to the jump. It was a little too fast. I feel like Tiki rushed it and wasn't patient. So, I came in again and really balanced through the corner, THEN let go. That was much better. Got off, raised the jump one hole, then reversed to the right. Trotted in once perfectly, then cantered in on the right lead. Nailed the distance, landed left, so I let him finish there.
Things I'm trying to perfect:
1. Always ride into and square up my corners
2. Make sure my circles and half circles look like circles
3. When I serpentine, make sure my lines are straight and my loops are even
4. When cantering, make sure I'm not bracing my inside rein against his neck
5. When reversing, I always try to BEND the opposite direction before changing diagonals.
6. When jumping, I try to approach and leave STRAIGHT, and make sure he's not bulging through the turns
7. Above all, I try not to get stale and do the same things ride after ride.
My friend Becca and I are thinking of going on a poker ride. She'll have to see if her horse that she's leasing will be good for that, and I have to see about cancelling lessons on a Saturday. If those things happen, we WILL go, yay! So for now, LATER Y'ALL!