The wretched heat wave is over at least for the time being. The car thermometer registered 82 degrees as I arrived at the barn on Monday – 20 degrees less than Sunday. It was also cloudy for most of the day as well. Amazing what 24 hours can do for the weather around here. You would think that the horses would rejoice and want to spend all day outdoors. Sure there was still humidity, but the cooler temperature appeared to keep the bugs at bay…or was it the new sweatproof fly spray? Anyway, most of the other horses were quite content and then there was Ike. Weenie still only made it outdoors for a couple of hours on Monday and then acted the fool until Ms. C came to rescue him. My big, handsome man is a homebody.
Today was a gorgeous day for my dressage lesson. We are continuing to school the Training Level canter transitions. Thankfully, the horse and rider are better all the way around and the correct lead happens 9.5 times out of 10. We still occasionally get disunited, so we get partial credit. The down transitions are also improving. Six months ago, Ike’s legs would flail about and I’d have the reins too loose to be of any help to him. Now, I am more help and it is much less “herky-jerky.” Really hoping that we can see some better scores for the canter movements. Just clearing the 60% margin would be thrilling. Ms. C tells me that my reins are still too long in my canter-to-trot transitions…aarrrgghhh. Can I blame sweaty reins? Yeah, I know, I need to do better. Here here is another photo of Ike’s right lead canter:
We also spent time working on getting Ike to come up into the bridle. Lots of half halts to get him to lift up and out of those withers and really push from behind. When he does – wow – that is that feeling of connection that you read so much about but can be so very elusive. Ike doesn’t have the strength to maintain it for long, but we know it is in there. Here is our attempt: