Z and Rugby Guy’s photo session

Hm well I’m not loving this new camera…. I had the same brand but different model and it performed a heck of a lot better then this one did today. Guess it’s a good thing that I was going to give it to the daughter after I buy the Nikon I really want…

Okay so here  are some photos of Rugby Guy working Z and I will put in my commentary about what is happening.

Early on in the session. Hello Rugby Guy! Z and the Paint see that a car has mysteriously stopped on the road. They are waiting to see if panthers will exit the SUV and then run like hell if need be.

Rugby Guy works on Z giving to the inside leg on a bend. Her nose is out a bit, neck stiff and she is not very relaxed. Her ears are in listening mode but she is U-shaped in her back and a bit on the forehand. Her neck is very stiff here.

More trot energy here. Head a little a lower.

Atttentive at walk and we are starting to relax but not as relaxed as I eventually want. That’s okay we’ll get there….

Rather relaxed and attentive, here at trot. Not much elevation or energy though. At this point the roundpen ground is slightly uphill.

Compare the previous photo to this one – trotting her more difficult direction. Here she is tenser in the neck, nose is higher and back is flat and becoming u-shaped behind the withers.

This work involves a lot of transitions. Here she has come back to a relaxed walk.

We have added a lot of bends and changes of directions. Here she overcompensates … the nose tilts too much to the inside. This could be too much rein (the rein looks loose so don’t think it would be but cameras don’t catch everything) and her not riding off the leg (which we will eventually tune her to do). Stopping the overbending by asking for less and working her on a bigger arc will be the solution.

End of session, chilling with Rugby Guy and mommy.This session was almost an hour with about 30 minutes or more of riding. The weather had dropped in temp and we had intermittent rain, some sprinkles at the barn but not much. It’s good for her to keep working during these changes and just keep to a schedule to instill that work ethic.

If she has a good session like this on Friday, we’ll take her out to the field for more challenging riding, where she does not have a rail to lean upon. Will see how much she is listening then! LOL!

This entry was posted in Riding, Training, Z. Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Z and Rugby Guy’s photo session

  1. Kathy says:


    Nice series of photos. I like the commentary so I can match what I think I see with what you see. (I’m just learning.) In the picture where you say, “the nose tilts too much to the inside” I wonder if a little more outside rein would also help that? What do you mean when you say, “Stopping the overbending by asking for less”? Asking for less what? I understand why the bigger arc will help.

    Curious minds want to know.


    • horseideology says:

      Hi Kathy
      That’s a great question and I think deserves a post all for itself so I’ll expand more about “less gets more” but for now here’s a shorter version:

      Z is in a sidepull in these photos. While I love the sidepull it doesn’t give the same feel that a bit would give – and I will be needing that leverage and feeling to continue with Mark Russell’s Lightness riding work. Looking at beginner bits this weekend and hope to find something up at Claremore.

      Once she gets a bit, I can start giving her the dressage idea of the outside rein which would indeed correct the overbend here. And would teach her to stretch down into that outside rein while keeping the inside rein loose.

      In this case though by what I mean by asking for less, is that Rugby Guy has kept too much pressure on the inside rein through the bend. I would give an squeeze (and immediate release) on the inside rein and see how she would react. If she didn’t, give another squeeze, and if she did, stop. If she overbent, then send her straight and ask for the bend again – you are looking ONLY for the edge of nostril on the inside and if you see more then that you have overbent.

      Because of her crookedness she will try to overbend or brace, depending on if she is being stiff to turn or too easy to turn. The outside rein will help her start understanding what is just enough.

      Where we all go wrong is we keep giving tugs and squeezes way after the horse has complied and then we get these overbends like this, which the horse thinks is correct.

  2. Have you tried her in a pair of elastic side reins? Even just lunging? How does she do in them? Does she do this nose out- hollow back thing when lunging too?

    • horseideology says:

      Hi OS
      Sorry, not into the side rein thing 🙂
      On lunging I’ll get some photos or video soon and no, she doesn’t do the hollow thing when lunging. This is definitely a rider on her back, icky! just-go reaction instead of thinking about it. We’ll get there.

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.