Friday, March 25, 2016

Still growing up

The weather ended early enough yesterday morning that after I scraped the ice off my car, I was able to get out to the barn and reunite BM and Bobby for a jump school. I think BM was expecting Bobby to have forgotten everything he ever learned about jumping after his two week vacation, but in the end--aside from the sore butt the first couple days--it seemed to actually do him a lot of good.

He started off heavy in the left rein, but from the ground his new norm for warming up is downright dreamy. His topline has filled out so much, and he just looks thick now instead of like a long, scrawny, ambling moose. All our dressage work is really paying off, though BM did say, "I'm glad I'm not in charge of the dressage!" while trying to get him to let the fuck go of his left rein.

She finally asked him to stretch, and he went right down and took the bit which was never, ever his go-to before. His canter started off slightly on the forehand, but once she popped him over a single X, his whole front end came up and he was ready to get to work. Yay, the jumping!

hmm. there's only one thoroughbred in this field.

Off they went over a single X, and an X bending line to a 2' vertical, then finally the bending line roll back to the single X. Bobby was totally chill and just loped around with minimum input from BM. She stopped to take off her coat after telling him what a good boy she was, and instantly turned around to ask for his cookie. Totes adorbs, Bobby. You are such a mooch. Fortunately my pockets were loaded with candy, so he stopped to get his reward for being the best jumping pony every round.

He was really relaxed and rideable over all the 2'3"-2'6" stuff, and BM even let him do his changes since she didn't feel like he would fling himself into them and get himself all worked up. He was good with the turning, and he never get frazzled when a jump came up out of nowhere.

where could bobby be?

Then I put the two Xes up to around 3', and he started getting a little tense. BM was forcing him to take the gappy distance instead of adding his favorite chippy half stride and burying himself under the fence. He knocked a rail twice just from getting too wound up about life, but when he was on, he looked so fucking good. Damn, you guys. My horse can be for realz fancy.

It wouldn't surprise me if he didn't lose some of his own confidence from constantly making bad distance decisions to fences. Now he's super comfortable at 2'3 and 2'6 again, and even 2'9 when coming off the right approach, but anything higher and it's like he starts to anticipate disaster a little bit.

I'm happy with my decision to take the year off from eventing. Even though he could go out and do it this year, and he's making such big strides in rideability and relaxation so fast, I think in the long run it's going to really benefit him to go slower than he needs, and have him come out next year brimming with confidence in himself.

"lolz, totally worked. she knows nothing."

14 comments:

  1. Hidden Bobby is the best Bobby!

    Glad to hear Bobby is feeling more confident- can't wait to hear how the rest of the year goes!

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  2. Yay Bobby! Next year will be amazing after all the amazingness going on right now!

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  3. This just makes me smile. Real big !

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  4. So happy things are going so well. Too cool and accomplished for the other horses, Bobby has upgraded to hanging out with his tree friend lol

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  5. A bunch of beavers in that pen. Naked tree! Yay confident Bobby!

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  6. I relate to Bobby - we start anticipating disaster at anything 2'9"ish and above too. The struggle is real!

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  7. I think sometimes it's wise to take a step back and make adjustments - nothing to fret about!

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  8. It's amazing what time (and slow, correct training) can do. The shows will still be there. :-)

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  9. Woah, that tree turned into a Bobby! Ha. Glad he's starting to feel confident again, and hopefully that will in turn help your own!

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  10. Yay Bobby! It is so hard for me to go slow because I always feel like my time with my horse could be ending (and hes only 14). I'm a nervous nelly but learning to take the slow road

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