Friday, October 8, 2010

Faced some emotion today

We set off for Woodhill Sands again this afternoon, and when we arrived there was a horse having some kind of physio treatment in the carparking area and Garbo was very interested in meeting said horse. I let him relax and brushed the rest of the dust off him (it rained 2mm last night and he made the most the the dusty rolling patch having a bit of damp dust on it to roll in)...

They eventually left and we saddled up with the bareback pad, Bronwyn and Critey were there too of course. I loaded up my rope bag onto Garbo's back so he could carry it for me. It fell off a few times...

As we were walking into the arenas Bronwyn said - I feel like just cantering off over there - I said Go On then... so she did... Garbo didn't mind initially but when she didn't turn around and head back he got a bit upset and did a little rear and started circling - I thought - great (I only had the 12ft on at this stage) lets take advantage of this and do some circles. We were right next to the dressage arena so I got him to go on the other side of the poles (that were about 20cm off the ground) and he did, but then tried to cut through one when he was facing Critey's direction and almost knocked the pole off it's blocks, but he stopped, and thought better of it. On the 3rd circle I asked him to stop and he stopped with one front foot over the pole. Then I asked him forward again and then asked him to back into the entry...which he did nicely... still half an eye on Critey. She was probably about 400m away at this stage.

I walked him to the sand arenas and we stopped at the barrel to unload my rope bag and change ropes. Someone had left a pair of spurs on the top and Garbo started chewing on them - it was very funny....

Suddenly a horse and rider rode past about 30ft away I guess but on the other side of the trees so he only saw a glimpse of them suddenly and he jumped, interestingly enough he jumped forward and alongside me, not towards me which was good. I put the 22ft rope on and off we went to utilise some of his energy.

We did some backwards falling leaf - what's that called again? I have forgotten how do to forwards again!! Goodness me. I actually got some nice circles today at walk and trot with Garbo looking at me. At canter he looks out still so what I did was everytime he did that I would ask him back to trot... that seemed to work quite well... plus it was a little bit of reverse psychology - no - don't go too fast.... he was eager to come in for a cuddle but I resisted - think for about 5 whole minutes.

Another rider trotted through the area we were playing in and away somewhere, and Garbo was a little more up - so this is really good stuff...exactly what I need to work on step by step...horses going faster around him, horses cantering away (and towards him) that he doesn't know as well as ones he does. He did a few exuberant leaps on the circle that in the old days would have been a snatch and run on his behalf.... and I'd be left wondering where he'd run off to. So I was quick to bring him in for reassurance.

I guess 30 minutes probably passed and we did a bit more driving from Zone 5 and even did some trotting! He kind of does a few strides then maneuvers himself around to look at me as if to ask What ARE you doing"?

Then I got on.... I know - who would have thought?? He wasn't 100% relaxed, the trees were a little blowy and horses and riders could be glimpsed between the trees on odd occasions but I trusted him. I told Bronwyn I would just get off when required. We walked around the grounds down the paths alongside the trees and investigated some of the cross country jumps.

I got off once when we got to the first cross country jump just to let him smell it, and then used the jump to get back on, and then we walked back alongside the arenas towards more cross country jumps.

So all in all a very successful day - I was very pleased with both of our progresses today. Riding Garbo bareback on a loose rein and halter around Woodhill Sands - I think if you had told me a year ago I would be doing that this week I would not have thought it possible. But one step at a time... it's certainly paying off.


Parelli Central said...

Awesome, Vicky.... You go, girl!

Petra Christensen
Parelli 2Star Junior Instructor
Parelli Central

Cilla said...

Yay go Vicki! Riding bareback! Cool x