Sunday, August 18, 2013

Day 3 Complete, ATL/NC Training Trip, Summer 2013

Day 3 of our trip complete. What a productive day yesterday! I am learning so much! Ok, so the thrilling parts. Sophie informed me that she was quite pleased that my position in the saddle has come a long way, and she said that she didn't have anything to fix, seatwise! She says that I have caught on to the concept of the perfect position, and while Swiss Miss can be a little squiggly and throw me off sometimes since she is green, I am now steady enough that I regain proper position quickly. Also, she told me she can tell that I am way more fit than the last time I came up. She said that she has always felt that I'm very athletic, but I am on day 3 of lessons for this trip and I'm not exhausted this time :) I only have a little bit of inner thigh soreness from posting and correcting on a green bean. Anyway, during each lesson yesterday, we started off in the surcingle and side reins. During lesson one, we lunged and have been teaching Swiss Miss how to properly carry herself in a frame and keep her poll high, plus we're working on her balance in different gaits. She is such a quick learner! The latter part of each lesson involved mounted work, and teaching Swiss Miss to maintain being poll high and coming into the bridle. We are really working hard at keeping her more forward so that she really rounds and comes into the bridle, coming onto the bit. I am focusing on keeping her forward and not yielding by giving up too much rein to make her confused with inconsistent contact, and I'm really glad for new gloves and my thin rubber laced reins. Our second lesson started in the surcingle, but instead of lunging we started with in-hand work! I am very excited to be learning how to work her in-hand. To begin with, we had to teach her forward while we make her feel a wee bit claustrophobic since we sandwich her between my body and the wall. She's quite sensitive and initially emotional, so keeping calm and just waiting her out till she yielded was critical, but she did so well! She is better to her left than to her right like a lot of horses can be, so touching the right rein is something she doesn't much care for and is a little resistant at learning to be through on her right side if she feels any contact on her right rein. Even so, she still caught on and managed to do some really lovely work. With Sophie's really fabulous arena footing, this pony is so fancy and such a nice, big mover. She really doesn't move like a pony at all. I am having such a good time! Onwards to two more lessons on day 4, then one more lesson on day 5 before we travel home. WOOT!

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