So I slacked off in August in working Z. The weather was horrible and I can no longer function in the triple digit heat and high humidity. Both of us ended up getting heat sick numerous times this summer and it simply is no fun staying inside all summer – this is actually a major reason to move further north for us as it is getting impossible to be outdoors during the summer months and July was a record breaking hot month for our state.
Now that it’s going up and down and all around (last Thursday was 70 degrees, today is 94, Thursday is expected to be in the mid-60’s) it’s time to get back to a routine. And of course it helps that both kids are back in school and I can focus again.
* Walk and trot calmly under saddle (1) and under Rider (2). She does fine until the saddle goes on and then she starts to rush and hurry. I think this was due to roundpen training to “work the edge off” when she was at RH and while that was okay in the beginning, now she needs to learn more about setting down and focusing.
* Smooth Walk and Trot transitions under saddle (1) and under Rider (2). She’s fine without saddle so now I need to carry over that feeling of calm and smoothness to the saddle work and then a rider under saddle.
* Backing up smooth and relaxed. Right now she backs with her head high and back u-shaped. That of course needs to be re-trained to a head lower and using the back when backing.
* Bends on large circles (2) at both walk and trot. She is very stiff on the right.
* Change of rein on a large circle (2) at both walk and trot.
* Balking and Propping issue. I’ve run across this in QH breeds. Instead of exploding and throwing a fit, their resistance is they simply do not go forward. I was interested to read over at A Year with Horses, that she calls this Propping. I’ve seen it enough that I knew it must have a name! LOL!
We’ve worked through a lot of it – but it keeps coming back (though less so). It something that needs to be continually dealt with until it completely disappears.
* Exposure to bit. Most likely I just use it occassionally in place of the sidepull only to make her more marketable if I ever choose to sell her.
All of the above I can do and have access to the skills and abilities to carry through on this training. My thoughts at this time is to continue with her until next May (2012) when I’ll send her up to Missouri for 90 days under a professional who can start putting more finesse on her, especially working her in canter.
* Exposure to show environments
* More trailering
* Trail Riding
* Canter work.
By the time that wraps up, I should be moved to Missouri myself and the house should be wrapped up except for the last bits I have to pay professionals to do.
I have also been thinking of getting an older horse, something fully trained in trail riding who is a no-excitement horse (15.2 gelding, possibly part draft) who could be a companion to Big Guy when he comes back to us. Prices are going down and down while the price of hay skyrockets due to drought. Probably a spring plan…