Tuesday, August 2, 2011

a balancing act

I finally rode today, just at a walk but for once Nina was patient and just walked along for a while.
She is still off on the right front. She is very sound at the walk and seems happy and looks sound on the left lead canter, but she is gimpy at a trot.
Normally, I would just give any horse that is sore some time off. I know that she was only partially healed when I started riding and a bad step means she is off again - it sounds silly to keep riding.

But I know that if I give her enough time off we will be back to square one with her refusing to be ridden and coming up with some resistance every step.
The riding part (forget the sudden regression of ground manners) clicked for her a few weeks ago. She is soft and forward and actually WANTS to do what I want. I ask for a trot with just a touch of my leg and she surges into a forward trot. We even cantered a tiny bit last week and went forward instead of sideways. The teeth gnashing, ear pinning, head tossing (look at me - I am a big hairy black boa constrictor waiting to KILL you) foot stomping, sucked back DRAMA has disappeared.

I know that with too much time off it will re-emerge. She needs to be ridden, just ridden, not even worked. She is sound and happy walking so I am doing that.
The problem with walking is that usually within about a minute she is tossing her head and shouting that she is B O R E D! would SOMEBODY please do something about this. Jumping up and down and pawing to back up her claim of BORED is not good for her leg either.

Fortunately, today she was quite willing to just walk around for a while. I can't even do circles or lateral work or anything to aggravate her sore leg so we just plodded around on the rail, but for once she was content. I think she MIGHT (sshhhhh, don't say it outloud) be starting to prefer working to standing around.
I worked on me; quiet leg, relaxed, sitting up straight (hand behind my back) eyes up (stop looking at the horse's ears) all good stuff to correct my hunched over defensive posture. Should help.

My goals are jumping forward to next year, maybe for once in my life I might be ready for the early shows and horse trials instead of just starting to work in early spring.

(snake found here randomgames.net)

1 comment:

  1. Boredom is a problem with my horse as well... we do better with regular work, but bad arena footing and weather have held us back for the last month or so.

    I hope that Nina heals up quickly. Sounds like you've got a good plan for the time being. :)


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