Monday, January 31, 2011

Hot and Cold

It was much colder today. I have Monday and Wednesday mornings off, so I got chores done early and went outside a few hours, later. I arranged the horses in such a manner that the North Pasture was void of all horses so Blu and I would not be harassed.

We played at liberty in the open pasture. I started in zone 5 with going and stopping with him. Once we were going at a steady, rhythmic walk, I began to take over with some steering--before, it was like a passenger session. Blu liked to go behind the corn crib by the round pen. From there, as we were going away, I asked for the trot. This was a position where the entire pasture was before him--calling him to hustle along. He went to the gate and stopped. We continued in this manner. I also used the barrels, which were booby trapped with cookies (:D), as resting stops. The first time I asked for the canter, he cantered off on adrenaline after a few strides, but he reestablished connection within moments of leaving. He came back to me. The rest of our time was like this--leaving and reestablishing connection. I did get several really nice, connected times at the canter in zone 5. On one of his flitting trips, he leapt into my 100X50 foot arena and caught the twine with his back hoof, which did not do much but tip three of the curtain rods over. I fixed the rods inside the arena only to have Blu start to come to me from the outside of the arena. Now he was very deliberately walking through the twine, pushing it over. I fixed it again.

During our liberty session, I noticed Blu choosing to go to the tire pedestal several times. That really grounds him and it's noteworthy for me to remember that it is an excellent place to go for a rest.

I put the neck string on him and led him to a barrel. Once I was on, he wanted to check out the next barrel and I had to use all my balance to stay on that ice covered barrel! I was able to redirect his attention to me and he stepped over to me.

Once we were on the rail, I used the cookied barrels as rest stops. Pretty soon, he offered the canter and did not swish his tail when he did. In general he was doing less tail swishing, today. Also, we used MUCH less stick, today.

I decided to try the cloverleaf pattern with him, again. We were in the canter on the right lead. We got through 10 laps of wild scattered everything before I finally took it back down to reorganize ourselves. I was not frustrated, I had just been sticking to it until he felt good, but it was obvious that he was struggling with the pattern. So, we completed three clover leaf patterns at the trot. Now, I felt him get it. We returned to the canter and, wouldn't you know it, things fell into place and he was much better. When everything was going so smooth, I drove him hard toward the southern border and slid him to a stop and back up. I was so tired, I forgot to measure the tracks. Those had been some wild turns and I nearly got flung in the opposite direction when he erratically swerved to make a very shallow corner. But it takes a lot to get me off a horse. At any rate, that was about the time I decided that he needed to trot first :)

So, Blu was hot, I was hot. I began shedding layers and tossing them about the pasture as we walked around to cool Blu off. My hat and gloves were hung on fence posts and my coat was flung on the ground, :D. The frigid air felt good!

When I got down, Blu followed me to his pasture and as I put all the horses back to the right pastures, Blu was a true and wonderful nuisance! Love him.

Natural Horsewoman Out.

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About Me

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I am a young horsewoman with a million things on my mind. I have been a student of the horse all my life. As a little girl, I had a desire to understand horses on deeper levels. I believed that there was no such thing as a bad horse, and I believed that all horses were beautiful. One might say that I was a naive child, but I guess I don't have an excuse anymore, because I still believe all of that, and Parelli Natural Horsemanship is helping expand on this perspective.

What We Are Currently Playing With

  • Moving Close Circles at Liberty
  • Soft, Balanced Canter on 45' Line
  • Zone 5 Driving