Tuesday, November 10, 2009


Hi everyone.
I had a session with Garbo today in the round pen and boy did it feel like we went backwards, one step at a time. But I think in the end something came of it.

I started with the 45ft rope and tried back up again - much better....then circle. Not bad, but change of direction was a nightmare - he seemed to miss my signals to come in to me to change direction all together. Yet - if I look down by mistake he takes that as 'come in' even when I think he is not looking at me. Boy oh boy - I need someone on the ground to see what my body is actually saying!

Side note - I am really annoyed there are no L3 clinics scheduled for Auckland in the for-seeable future by either of the two NZ instructors. No clinics of course also means no lessons available. Unless of course I want to drive 4 hours with Garbo for a one off lesson - no thanks . Auckland is the biggest city in NZ for goodness sakes - there needs to be more Parelli instructors here. I should be able to get a lesson once a month if I want one. The NZ instructors teach in the UK and Australia for some of the year - perhaps an Australian instructor would like to come to Auckland and do a clinic? The area I live in has alot of potential Parelli Students - it's such a busy horse area.

So - back to my 'asking incorrectly'. After a very frustrating 10 minutes I tried to drive him from Point A to Point B on the 45ft, it worked ok because he was playing touch it (and I might get a treat). But in the circle he would creep in slowly and before long it would be a 12ft circle at canter and then he'd stop behind me, put his head over my shoulder and breathe deeply (puffing).

So I put the 22ft back on the tweak the COD again. I have always known my draw is better than my drive but I am at a loss as to what else to do at a distance as far as drive goes. We can Yo Yo to the end of the 45ft because I can still 'effect' him by putting energy down the line, but on a circle - how on earth am I supposed to get him to move out? And stop him creeping in?

By this point Garbo wasn't doing anything at walk - so he was trying to do COD's at canter. But he canters right through my carrot stick. Then I ask him to face me and he comes at me sideways. I ask him to back up and he backs his back end to me. Everything ends with him being in my lap.

Ok - so you can see why this session is a backwards session right?

Now I realise I need a stronger send, but a stronger send means to Garbo - go faster not further out. I tried a few times and basically got Garbo and myself hot and bothered. I stopped for some friendly.

What else can I do to make him realise he does not need to sit in my lap all the time?

So now I see the pole, still have the 22ft line on and decide to get him to send over the pole, turn face and wait 22ft away. I position myself 22ft away from the pole and send him backwards so he is in line with the pole, and ask him to go over the pole. He heads off in a circle past me so I shake the rope to stop him (after asking him to turn and face). Then he stops but stops sideways and sidles over to me. I had to be firm about the rules, don't stand on top of me.!!

At one point I closed my eyes and jumped up and down and waved the rope in one hand and the carrot stick in the other and then opened them and Garbo was 12ft away looking at me. Boy he found it hard to be away from me. Now I see why driving him away is so hard.

So we had to repeat, back away, send over pole, turn face and wait AWAY from me, back up if need be, wait. I had to do it about 10 times before he got it. Then we did two more just to make sure it ended on a good note because by then my phases were softer and lower, and ended it there.

Well - certainly lots for us to lick and chew on tonight!
I still find it so hard to be assertive without feeling like I am being aggresive. But I have to think like a horse. Aarrggghhh.


Cilla said...

it's so hard isn't it being assertive in a way that's effective and not percieved as aggressive. sigh.

Twinnie said...

Oh thats a tough session....