But enough about my butt.
|i like big butts, and i cannot lie.|
I took Spyder up to the outdoor despite the gusting winds, lack of company (although I gave BM a head's up we were going to be out there by ourselves, so if we weren't back in an hour she should come check on us), and arriving at the exact time he was supposed to get turned out with his amigos. He was a total gem! He stood quietly at the mounting block and plodded along on the buckle while I tightened my girth and dropped my stirrups a couple of holes.
He was easier to get forward at the trot in the larger space of the outdoor, and he maintained a much steadier rhythm. Cantering was still...mehhh. He grunts like a fat, horny trucker when forced to actually work which just makes me laugh at him and kick him on. He's still unbalanced and wants to careen about, but he started going on a normal looking track by the end with a lot of opening outside rein and insistent inside leg.
I decided to pop him over an X to finish to do something a little fun. I don't think he's been in the outdoor since the last time I rode him up there in...June? He only gets ridden once a week (on Tuesdays, so he didn't get worked by me today), and I'm pretty sure the girl that rides him hasn't jumped him since BO went in for her surgery nearly two months ago. Regardless, he's a very level headed jumper, and he has absolutely drool-worthy form.
I turned him in towards the jump at a trot and he immediately started a leg-flailing, crow-hopping, head-tossing canter. Oh, really? It's going to be like that?
I sat him right down on his ass and asked him to walk over the 2' crossrail. He was fine with that, so we quickly ran through the Baby Jumping Horse exercise. Walk the jump until it's boring. Trot the jump until it's boring. Canter the jump until it's boring. Once he settled into the trot, I let him keep the canter on landing and he remembered that he's a perfectly capable Baby Jumping Horse and cantered like a gentleman over it several times. Good pony.
Today was a flat day for Robert. I started off with the dressage whip because he's been very sneaky lately about cheating on his leg yields. He wants to bend his neck too much to the inside and when I try to open my outside rein, he dives off in that direction, but abandoning his hind end along the way. It took literally one tap on his hip and he was like, "OK, OK! I'LL DO WHATEVER YOU WANT! JUST DON'T BEAT ME!" This whip nonsense is still totally uncalled for, but it has gotten better from last year where the only movement I could get out of him when holding a whip was flying backwards or spinning around like a reining horse.
He warmed up fine, but once our warm up routine was finished, where he usually settles right into work, today he was being fidgety with his head and not softening at all. I finally put the whip away since I wasn't using it anymore and it was just getting flipped back and forth from one hand to the other. Once it was gone, he dropped his head right down and marched off ready to work. Oh, Robert. You bring so much drama upon yourself.
I had a couple of things I wanted to work on, but I picked up our second canter and decided it needed to be fixed before moving on to anything else. To the right, he wanted to get quick and runreallyfast. Unable to simply yank his face off with a bit--which makes him pull right back and happily dump himself into my hands--I actually had to use my broken cheeks (yes, those cheeks), and my legs, and my poor core and half halt him every other stride.
It was awful.
Take out the extreme huffing and puffing and grunting and groaning that would have made Spyder proud, I actually did a little....dare I say real dressage riding? Oh, you thought that was referring to Bobby? No, he was fine. He responded to every half halt, and responded to every stride I didn't ask for one by jetting right back off again. I finally got him settled and went back to the walk to catch my breath. Gosh, why is real riding so hard?!
|we don't need no bit for foamy lips.|
To the left, I was expecting to deal with the same thing with the added bonus of a dropped inside shoulder. Fortunately, the left was a much easier fix. He wasn't as keen to hand gallop, but he was happy to oblige my expectations of falling to the inside. I have no one to blame but myself for this one. He's always been so fucking stiff bending left that I used to over-bend his neck just to get it moving. Now he thinks that's the way to go and he won't hold himself up. It was an easy fix by asking for some counter flexion and making sure he was super straight in his body.
So not a whole lot of exciting going on, but good remedial work that's going to fill in the holes that are showing up without the mask of mutual pulling on the bit.
|that ridiculous mane got pulled after our ride.|
We finished with two trips up the hill for a total of thirty minutes of walking hill work. Gotta keep the booty in shape.
I know my last few posts half been ungodly long and boring, but I promise I'll bring you something better tomorrow!