Combining the sporadic lessons with the holiday and then some mystery gastric thing I had, I haven't ridden much, and the last time I rode Gwyn I felt like a stiff board getting on and boy was that discouraging and I didn't make it out more. The Sunday lesson was early afternoon and a new friend, Robin, joined us. She's also an endurance rider that Cortney met and I definitely like her, she's a great person to hang out with. She came to Thanksgiving too!
Her gelding has been cleared for light riding after an injury, so she joined us at Bridle Trails. We planned on a 1pm meet time that of course I ended up biffing when I found my truck tire was low on air AND there was a line at the gas station for using the air pump.
Because I'd been so stiff last time I rode I made sure I stretched my hip flexors before getting on. Note to self, do that before putting on spurs. Lesson learned.
|Gwyn recognizes the sound of Cortney's truck, LOL|
He and I discussed her weakness in the canter is because we need to strengthen the hind leg that pushes off into the canter. Her weak direction is to the left/counter clockwise, so that's her right hind that needs strengthening work.
Turns on the forehand work on strength in that same leg as you ask them to step under themselves. This is reflected in how her better turns are when we turn counter clockwise because it's the left hind stepping under itself.
Additionally, I need to think of exercises like turn on the forehand as a weight lifting exercise. I shouldn't be schooling it endlessly because like with weightlifting, eventually you hit exhaustion where the muscles just can't perform anymore. I need to come into it with a sets and reps mindset. So do a quarter to half turn, then move forward to reward, relax and encourage the downward stretch. Then repeat a little bit later.
|She had the biggest, swingiest walk as soon as she realized we weren't done and were walking trailward.|
|This park is surrounded by encroaching city. It is a gem.|
I didn't get home until after sunset (4pm this time of year, lol) Then I just hung out at the barn chatting with folks. I like having this social aspect again. That was definitely something I didn't realize I'd miss as much when we got our own place in Michigan.