|he was clearly thrilled.|
He got a massive bag of his favorite treats (carrots), and was forced to wear one fabulous tiara for our entire ride. I'm not sure he considered that a plus, but dang did he look adorable.
|he was dubbed "rupaul" for the occasion.|
one sassy drag queen coming right up!
Our jumping exercise for the day was another building block for course work. I set up the three stride bending line again, but I also used the first vertical as the first jump for a two stride line going straight. That way he has to be listening to me to figure out which way I wanted him to go--something we're not always on the same page about.
I warmed him up tracking right, coming across the diagonal to the barrel jump of the bending line, and then landing left and taking the striped vertical at an angle. He did that like a total pro: calm, rhythmical, great distances. Unfortunately, Hubby was trying to find a spot in the arena where the lighting would actually let him take video so he missed all of that.
Next up was the two stride vertical to oxer. There is video of that!
Holy shit, doesn't he just look too fucking cute jumping around in a tiara?! I'm going to have to look in the rule book to see if one is allowed in competition. If not, I really need to get a tiara embroidered on an ear net. It suits him.
|"oh, hai. just jumping like a princess."|
After the "straight" line, we moved on to the bending line coming down the arena:
And finally the trickiest, which was coming into the straight line but making it to the bending line instead:
We hung out with Hubby in the middle of the arena for a few minutes to let Sarah get some flat work in since she was nice enough to wait for us to jump. Bobby was a little sticky getting back to work after his break. It didn't help that I wanted to finish with the whole reason I put the jumps up the way I did: bending line, come back around and straight line.
He never didn't do the line that I asked, but I could not get him straight to save my life coming into that first jump. That meant we'd either lose our line to the barrels, or he'd be so fucking crooked to the oxer that I'd just grab mane or the neck strap and hang on as he narrowly avoided taking down a standard as he jumped.
I only let that madness happen for a couple of run-throughs before calling a halt. No one needs to get flustered here! We're trying to nix that completely, for fuck's sake.
Despite how much I hate trotting fences, we re-approached the first jump from the trot. Bobby started to suck back as soon as we made the turn so that he could charge the last stride, but I just got into two point and put my leg on and let him canter up to the jump. He decided that was a good compromise and didn't get quick. Very good, Mr Grown Up Nine Year Old!
We worked through the exercise over and over. Trot the turn, canter the first fence, and then alternate every time which line we were going to take. Hubby didn't get any video of this because he was coaching us through. "Is your inside leg on?" "You're turning too much in the air." "You jumped ahead." "You weren't straight coming in."
|"you suck at riding."|
(i was untangling his rein from the shank. don't judge.)
That, Hubby. He sure knows how to make me actually ride instead just sit there and pout because my horse isn't jumping perfectly all by himself.
Eventually, with Hubby's constant reminders, Bobby did the bending line well (which was never really a problem) and he jumped into and out of the two stride straight (instead of instantly aiming for the bending line, which was the problem).
I finished feeling very satisfied with how we worked through it without ever breaking down into a temper tantrum, even after Hubby chided me for not being aggressive enough with my cues. And by aggressive he meant using them at all. Yay, winning!