Monday, April 8, 2013

Cantering!

I rode a bunch last week, and this week it will finally be warm! Sunday was beautiful, but our ride got off to a bad start. Spyder got a new pasture mate while I was on him, and he wasn't too thrilled with the idea of them all galloping and going crazy in the field with greetings. When he finally calmed down with my persistent leg and not dealing with his crap, it was a great ride. We didn't want to steer at first, but we got through it and ended it with a great canter on the track to the left. No grunting and no kicking out.

Tonight, we rode in the big field with one of the first days over 60 this spring. We did about 10 20 meter circles at the canter, and he was beat - mentally because it's still pretty new and wet because he still has too much hair! Again, no kicking and grunting, no bucking.. did get some ears back, but overall, it was great. While he did have a fit in the field, I pushed through it and it seemed to work perfectly. He did it once, and didn't even think about it again. Even with a goose and a herd of deer running around, he was focused.

I'm glad that we're finally getting it to the left with the *kiss* and outside leg. His canter is a 3-beat gait which is lovely and slow, but we'll have to work on the speeds with them like we were with the trot. For now, we're just good to go if we're pushing through him wanting to change gaits. Steering with the reins is mostly irrelevant at the canter because I don't want to throw him off balance, but the seat and inside leg seem to push him out enough to get a decent circle and the ability to control where we're going a bit. I'm happy to know he gets it!

Hopefully we'll get to work to the right to get those muscles moving as the cue is becoming more apparent. SO EXCITING!!! Once we're good with circles, straight lines will be a little tougher, but with some jumps, we'll get there! Excited for more warmer weather and to be back in the saddle more often!