In the Arena Again
No sense in trying to go out on a hack today or tomorrow as the hunters are out and about. The guys are pretty good around here, but I really hate being out there on my horse when a gun goes off close by. It's not so much that we'd be shot--me in my very bright neon orange jacket and the Boy in his neon pink exercise rug--but the spook and possible run off from the gunshot is no fun. Then again, there may be some idiot out there who thinks deer dress in neon!
This is one of the drawbacks of living in a State Park/wildlife management area.
So, into the arena I went.
First I rode Toby. I just decided after a short warmup that we'd do every exercise he knows how to do so here's the list: walk, extended walk, walk on a long rein, walk pirouettes, trot, extended trot, shoulder-in, haunches in (could have done travers too), leg yield, half pass, zig-zag half pass, (forgot to try a little piaffey stuff--whoops), canter, extended canter, canter half pass, canter half-pass zig zags, canter pirouette, single flying changes, three stride tempis, two stride tempis, halt from all three gaits, and reinback. I think that's it. Mind you, we did most of these on a fairly long rein as well. No reason to demand collection when Tobester can do it all with the simplest of aids. *G*
Then I rode Tucker. I worked a little bit on the walk pirouettes as he kept sticking his nose out going to the left. Leave out the zig zags, the flying changes, and canter pirouettes and you have his program. Instead I did simple changes through the walk. He too was a good boy and worked on a more collected, vertical frame.
Then came Chance. Leave out almost everything except basic walk, trot canter, and you have his ride. But we did start some elementary leg yield and he started to get the idead. Far better going to the left, but he did give me some trot on both reins. He is relaxing more and more at the canter, offering a lower head carriage after the depart. There's still a lot of work to to, but I am pleased.
Everyone had a nice apple and carrot after work.
I guess I rode for a grand total of an hour, though I took longer to saddle up and groom. But 20 minutes or so per horse is not a bad effort after such a long layoff. Toby and Tucker could acutally stay pretty fit if I did that each day as they are Thoroughbreds--easy to leg up. And when I work, it's pretty intense with basically no walk breaks. Not sure what Chance needs, but I'm sure if I were going to compete him, he'd need more work to get fit.
As long as they are happy, healthy, and content, I'm just fine with an easy schedule.