training progress - week 5

We went to Iron Horse to watch Nemo & Koda's training session yesterday. It had only been a week since we last observed, but even my untrained eyes could notice a difference. They were quieter in general. I've uploaded a couple short clips of their training, you'll see both Koda & Nemo in all the clips.

They worked both of them outside all week, but it was just a bit too windy & cool to be outside yesterday morning as planned.
Patty had Koda go first this time, she lunged him, and then hopped on without anyone holding him. He didn't budge. As you'll see in the video below, he was more like himself. Koda fussed a lot less with the bit, and was a more willing riding partner in general, as she could turn him with ease. She said he did stop playing with the bit all together for a while last week. I can see he is progressing. His favorite word continues to be whoa, that horse stops on a dime! Koda is also learning that taking a break doesn't necessarily mean your done working. Incase you haven't picked up on it, my boy is on the lazy side. We had a nice discussion last week about flipping that trait, I didn't know that could be done. Looks like he's making progress with that too.

Koda starting out, and acting more like himself. Nemo is lunging at the far end of the arena.

Koda loping. Nemo starting out.

Amanda (Assistant Trainer) handled Nemo the whole time yesterday, as they have added working the boys (some days) together. Patty mentioned she feels it's important for a pair of horses to learn to work together, as well as apart. Amanda let us know Nemo has the start of a cinch sore, it didn't surprise us as he has lighter hair and thinner skin. Nothing visible, he saddled and rode fine, it's just tender - something to be aware of and watch. Amanda lunged him, and hopped right on without him
being held. She also didn't do the up, down, lean over, wiggle saddle thing with him. They did mention while training outside during the week, Nemo was the more sensitive (aka aware) of the two and gets a little more fired up. Yep, that's our Nemo - nothing new there.

Nemo loping. Koda continues working at the far end of the arena.

Nemo loping the other direction, with Koda in the middle.

I like that Iron Horse changes up how they train the horses on a regular basis, they keep it fresh. They will begin to work on softening their faces. Nemo's head needs to come down (he is very high headed), and Koda needs to be softer in general. We talked about clipping bridle paths, which we have done with both boys - altho you still have to take it slow, especially with Nemo. She also asked if/how we want their manes cut, gasp! Brad busted out laughing, as we've had many related discussions. I don't want Koda's gorgeous mane cut, ever. Maybe someday I'll consider it, if it really needs to be cut for a special show. Thank goodness Patty asked (I guess she always does). He will remain with the "natural cow horse look". Brad is cutting what mane Nemo has, to what I think she called a flat top cut. It's the same cut Harmony sports when she is actively being shown. It will look good on him.

We are going up to Iron Horse again next Saturday, and Patty thinks they'll be ready for us....TO RIDE ?
?!! It will be right around the 45 day training mark. They will begin to adjust some of our horse's training, according to what they observe. Basically we'll begin the owner training part of her program! I am soooo excited, I can't even tell you. I've been waiting my whole life to ride my own horse...my eyes well-up just thinking about getting started. Saturday is now officially my favorite day of the week :)


Sherry Sikstrom said...

Both your boys seem to be coming along nicely.Koda is a pretty mover and I am partial to appies so it stands to reason I will like Nemo. Looking forward to seeing more of them

aurora said...

Thanks! We are really happy with their progress. We continue to be amazed every time we go, at how quiet and content all the horses (and people for that matter) are at Iron Horse.

We love our Appy boys! If Koda was blessed with spots, he probably would have remained the stallion he was bred to be and sold faster & higher (or Diane would have kept him) and then he wouldn't be ours. So, in a way I'm kinda glad he's solid - altho admit spots are more fun!!

Jeni said...

Both boys look really good. I'm not seeing a lot of fussing at all.

I'm so excited FOR YOU!!! I wish I could make tomorrow Saturday so you wouldn't have to wait any longer to ride YOUR HORSE!

Have an awesome day!

aurora said...

Thanks Jeni! Two more days, and counting!

Deb Soderbeck said...

Looks like your two are doing great, I bet you are way exciting to start riding. I know I am for U.

aurora said...

Yep, I am sooo ready to start riding regularly again! I miss it, alot...