Like I said, P was a gem. She stayed calm and our biggest battle was getting her confident enough to move forward and to turn her attention to me and inside the ring, rather than everything "outside" the ring. Her looky-lou behavior meant that we had some killer counter-bend going on, but since that's not exactly what I was going for... we had some work to do.
P's canter work was pretty great for us. She was less sticky (though still not "forward") but clearly fairly content to let me kick away at her. Three weeks ago the amount of leg I was using would have caused a serious tantrum and bucking fit, but Sunday she just worked through it and seemed to try and release through her ribs.
I didn't realize it but we were working under saddle for a full hour, which explains why the mare started getting a bit fatigued and cranky toward the end. We attempted a few small leg yields, but by that point she was pretty much spent. I was a little annoyed that she was ignoring me as much as she was... but again (broken record), the ride really did surpass all my expectations, so I tried not to pick too much of a fight.
At the end of it, we were both wiped. I can firmly attest that my right leg (and ass) is totally sore from the effort, so I'm sure P is feeling it a bit too. She was such a love afterward though, I really have to give her a lot of credit (The Boy did give her a lot of carrots, so I'm sure she knew that she was a good girl...or maybe she just learned that Boy = Carrots, who knows)
|Love those quiet moments after a good ride....|
|Exhausted, happy and looking hot in that Air Jacket....|
Below are a few snippets from our ride. The first video is our start. You can see she's a bit apprehensive, but did move up into the trot without throwing a fit. Her instinct is to be jammed up and behind the vertical (which is where we spent a chunk of the day). She's still pretty leery of the corners.. but I was thrilled that her reaction was to just stop and avoid... rather than shy/bolt. I'll TAKE IT
Second clip is our first canter work... Her trot is finally looking a bit better here. Notice she's freely moving up into the canter (WIN), but we're still fairly unbalanced/counterflexed. (baby steps....)
Finally... this is the end of our ride. I made her go back to work after a 5 min walk break, so she's understandably cranky, though less so than she was in the past... At the end you can see a few "attempts" at a leg yield. They were not successful. At All. In fact at a couple points she actually leaned into my leg, which is when you see me spin her in a small circle. It's ugly, but it seems to be our best "please listen now" tool in our tool box at the moment. Talk about absolutely TUNING ME OUT. brat.