Custom blog header by Bre!

In Loving Memory...
~ Gogo Fatale ~

6/2/01 - 10/11/11
~ Forever the Marest of Them All ~

Saturday, January 31, 2009


It's Ice City out here. They weren't kidding about New England ice storms, seriously. Gogo almost did the splits going out to turnout two days ago, and I also fell on my ass while leading her. Thank god she just stood there and laughed at me! Dangerous... won't be doing that again.

On a better note, I've had two very successful dressage days, one being a lesson on Thursday and one being a ride on my own on Friday. I was in kind of a funk yesterday and didn't know that I wanted to ride (thought about riding today instead of yesterday, and giving her the day off yesterday instead of today), but once I got out into the barn I found that I really did want to get on and ride. I love that.

Thursday, Gogo just warmed up WELL. It's not often that she does that, and Vicki and I are trying to come up with ways that encourage her to start off the workout well so that we can progress to more complicated things faster, and not spend the entire workout on the warmup. Before, it was common to spend 30-45 minutes just trying to get her to relax and give her back to me, and some rides I'd never get it. Lately, it's been so much better, better than it ever has been before. It's like she gets it suddenly... she's growing stronger in her topline so it's easier for her to work correctly. Using her neck against me was such a vicious cycle before, but it feels like we're really breaking up that resistance. She warmed up perfectly, and we did w/t/c, trot lengthenings on a straightaway, leg yields, shoulder-ins, a million transitions, and canter lengthenings on a 20m circle (which is part of the Training B test). She was going so well that Vicki ran to her office and whipped out her Omnibus (or well, last years... they've done away with the paper Omnibus this year, which is good and bad in a lot of ways) which has the Training A and B tests in them, and we ran through Training B. The only major blooper we had was when I was coming into the first canter transitions and I surprised her in the corner by not setting up for it, then poking her a bit hard with my spur. She bucked! I noticed that this past week though - I've not been using my spurs on her hardly at all, in any situation, so those few times when I have poked her, she has objected quite loudly. Our stretchy trot circles still need finessing too, because picking her back up still causes a little bit of tension (she thinks she's done, I assume). We're making progress there though. We had a totally perfectly balanced, square halt at the end, and we ended on that!

Yesterday I was kind of funked out all day, and wasn't sure if I really wanted to ride or not. I decided that I did in fact want to ride once I walked out into the barn and breathed in that good horsey smell, so I pulled her in from turnout, spiffed her all up, and got on. And she was GREAT. After a good long trot and canter on the buckle, we did some walk work (which is currently the Golden Ticket to progressing to better work), then moved up into trot and canter, where we got some fabulous mediums, some awesome canter-trot-canter transitions across the diagonal (her nemesis - she wants to do flying changes ALL THE TIME), some gorgeous leg yields, a whole mess of serpentines of varying sizes and shapes, and some really high quality shoulder-in. We even did some stretchy walk and coming back up, and got an awesome stretchy trot at the end. YAY MARE. I felt much better after I rode, which is an awesome feeling - sometimes getting on Gogo in the wrong mood is a BAD IDEA, but in cases like these, it's good to just get on and go for it. I'm glad I did, because we had a really high quality, productive workout. Hell, it was only a half-hour into it and I was going, all right she's perfect I'm done! Which NEVER happens... it's almost always an hour before we're ready to be finished!

Yay mare!!!!

Today is Lendon Gray's Weekend Educational Program (or well, this whole weekend is, but I'm working tomorrow so I can't go). Vicki's giving a lecture at 9 called "Riding A Winning Warmup", which is obviously something I really want to hear, and there are a few other lectures I want to attend, such as "Keeping the Dressage Horse Sound" and a few others, maybe. I'm only going for half the day, I think, so we'll see what else is open for me to do!

Tonight I'm going over my January goals and creating some new ones for February, so stay tuned!

No comments: