It felt WONDERFUL to hop on Muffin Monday. It was just the icing on the cake of coming home from our fabulous vacation. For not having been ridden in 2 1/2 weeks, he was fantastic! I rode him in the ring in the regular cavesson bridle and
I really did like it. He felt a little strong, but then he ALWAYS feels strong in a regular cavesson. Tying his mouth shut really does make a difference. He felt VERY soft and flexed beautifully at the poll in it. I was in the cc saddle, and cantered him a few times around both ways before I put him to work at the trot. I worked on the things Gigi had us focusing on; I went almost overboard with the trot. I put tons of leg on, posted fairly high, and really pushed him forward. I practiced going from the slow trot to the forward one, and worked many, many transitions. The canter was extremely forward and strong, so I put him on a 20 m circle both ways to keep him firmly in check. After halting a few times, then half-halting strongly (remembering to let go) he finally became much more uphill and light. I couldn't help myself, and cantered over the coop a few times on the circle. Jumped it about 4 times tracking left, and he landed the left lead EVERY time. The 5th time I jumped it on the angle and reversed, then jumped it 3 or 4 times tracking right on the circle. Again, he landed his right lead every time:) GOOD MUFFIN!
Yesterday he got a pedicure, and rode today in the front pasture with Star. Used Nicole's HS bit again and the cc saddle, and he was super! He really wanted to be distracted and go visit with his mare, but she cooperated and minded her own business so Muffin could concentrate and get his mind on HIS business. I did TONS of transitions, and tried to trot big and forward uphill, but remain stable and consistent downhill. Did several halts on the downhill side and worked on keeping him light in my hands. Finished up with doing about 10 diagonal figure 8's with changes through the walk. He is never as steady in the contact when riding in the pasture, and I don't blame him. The ground isn't exactly soft, it's pretty uneven, and there's a LOT to look at. The canter was HUGE; I couldn't really sit it! Did a good half hour ride, and I was TIRED at the end, lol. Love my pony! Not sure yet what we'll do tomorrow ... I will ride him, though!