Monday, October 28, 2013

Riding Daisy and Working with Freedom

I have been faithful the past few days of working with both horses. This past Friday I rode Daisy in the arena. I have decided to go back to working on some basic training things that I want her to get better at and what better time to do that then winter :) I worked her on responding to my body cues and stopping and starting. She did ok. I wasn't overly impressed with how she did but we did end on a good note. I had worked her in the round pen a bit before I rode her and although she was to an extent paying attention to me, I didn't have her total attention. I figured since Saturday I had plans I probably wouldn't ride her so I decided to see if I could fit a ride in on Sunday.
I also worked Freedom. I worked him at paying close attention to what I was doing from the ground. I mostly walked and trotted him and got him to the point that I would be slowing down, he would notice and slow down without me telling him to. I want to line-drive him sometime this week maybe but if I don't drive him I plan to just work him on the ground.

Sunday then I did ride Daisy. I was tired so I had taken a nap, woke up refreshed and decided to ride. I rode Daisy in the arena once again and this time she did amazing. There were a few times she ran right thru my cues but not like she had when I had ridden her on Friday. I got her to slow down, do turns, stop, start up and everything, all with light leg, rein, and seat cues. I feel like if I keep working her at this and keep my mind focused on where I want her to be come spring I will be able to get somewhere. I feel like for the last year I have been focusing on getting her responding well to the snaffle bit which I wanted, but then not focusing on some of the other important things I want her to know. So I am not sure how this will all work this winter because I know I have a busy January and February coming up but I am determined with a little planning and determination I will be able to still get my training in. Anyway, back to Sunday, I got her nice and soft and had her responding so well, I praised her and ended on that note. As I had been working her I had been praising her and that seemed to make a huge difference. :) I was pleased with where we got Sunday.

Today, (Monday), I worked with Freedom again. This time, once again, just on the line but we did some things I haven't worked with him to much on. He does know how to disengage his hindquarters and back up but today I really got him to move his feet. I got him to back up, all body language, and when he decided he could stop, or slow down, I just twirled my rope in a circle at him and that is his cue that you better listen. He did amazing with that. I have been working him on that periodically so that didn't surprise me. Then I asked him to disengage his hindquarters on both sides. I used the same method as when I ask him to back up, first just kinda leaning in toward his hindquarters, slowly twirling the rope, and if that doesn't work, twirling the rope faster and eventually tapping him with the rope if he doesn't move. I don't really have to tap him with the rope at all since he is so sensitive. I was happy with how he did. We also just worked on him following me around and keeping up with me. I got him to walk and trot alongside me and he did very well. I was pleased with how well he did.
I put him in the stall and then got Daisy out. I hopped on her bareback with the snaffle bit, and rode her for a bit in the front yard. I honestly was really pleased with how she did. At first she walked off before I was ready so I asked for her to back up to the spot she started from. Got her to stand still then told her she could walk off again. After we walked a ways, I asked for her to stop. She walked right thru the cue so I got her to stop, then backed her up to where I had asked her to stop. After that I didn't have a problem with that :) Mostly I just worked her at stopping and starting, as well as disengaging her hindquarters both ways. What I love about Daisy is that she is sensitive so I can just lightly lay my heel against her side and that gets her to move. If she doesn't move I just add a bit more pressure and then she usually moves. :) I was quite pleased with how the evening with both horses went!

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