holiday bonus

We planned on taking advantage of the Fourth of July holiday, to ride an extra day. Plans came together and we enjoyed a sunny late afternoon ride, just our three horses in an outdoor relaxing arena atmosphere.

Our frainer is typically pulled in 500 directions so she really savors rare moments like these, and so do we. I have no clue how she patiently deals with all of "it"...nice to just spend time together and ride. I am glad she was able to join us. She rode Cierra, and Brad & I rode our usual mounts. We had not seen Cierra under saddle for several months. She is looking really good, responsive but relaxed, and enjoying her job.

In the midst of the arena fun, the resident grandkids asked to ride. Brad led them in hand on Nemo. They are young, and it was the first time Nemo had done kid duty. He was a champ! Altho Brad said he nudged him in the back while leading the kids (separately) as if to say "are you kidding me?". Gotta love that spotted horse! While this was going on, Koda was all ears. He was very curious what those little people were doing on his brothers back!

We rode on Saturday & Sunday too, a bonus three days in a row! Doesn't happen too often. I am back to loping regularly, altho getting more softness still needs work. Oh, and getting that darn (expletive removed) left lead!! Koda is making me work so hard for it, and knows what I am asking for... 

His left counter canter is so smooth that I need an extra set of eyes to reassure I am feeling what I think I am. Wish I didn't have to ask for help, but I just don't catch it fast enough. Sometimes I'm correct, many times I'm not. I'll simply have to keep working at feeling it...just when I think I've got our left lope off figured out, we seem to take two steps back.

I asked Brad to take a video of us loping left, so I could not only feel but see where we are at. I think seeing yourself/horse can help. Nice of him to oblige, however the video turned out b-b-b-bouncy! He trotted on Nemo to "keep up"...granted it is a big outdoor arena, but I'm pretty sure zoom would have worked better ;) it was pretty funny at the time. 

Here we are in motion, going forward and with a little extra help from Brad going up & down too! Not pretty, but we are slowly getting there. I think.


Tails FromProvence said...

I am totally with you on the 'not feeling the wrong leg' thing! Embarrassing after 45 odd years of riding :-( but I just can't do it. If I look down I can tell...but that's like cheating, isn't it?
Your video looks good (if bouncy) and your canter work (lope just doesn't seem right coming from me with my English background) looks fine - I'd say downhill but I'm not sure what you're looking for in Western?
Anyway don't think I'd manage to trot around after someone and video their ride like that. Kudos to Brad!

aurora said...

Well I am glad I'm not the only one Martine. Altho half the time I can't tell even when I cheat. He is so even, and I have this long black flowing mane to look around, and, and...it's so frustrating having to ask for help! I've tried many things in an effort to solidify the feel, going in a circle with the counter lead etc. I've gotten a little better, guess I'm just challenged...Koda actually can collect really nicely, with a light touch. But yes, in this video he is very flat (described as downhill).

The video-ing was pretty funny, I thought he was laughing at me! It wasn't our first attempt, but he got what I wanted to see.

fernvalley01 said...

if you feel safe, try closing your eyes, it really helps to feel things better.wow pretty good video for taken off the back of a horse, I tend to get a little "Blair Witch " video shake on the ground ,cannot imaging doing it while on a horse

aurora said...

I forgot about closing eyes Sherry, good suggestion. I did many moons ago while taking lessons, but never on Koda.