March 26th, 27th, and 28th, 2013

Wow I’m super behind…

Tuesday, rode her in the pelham and had a great little jump school.  She was listening, attentive and responsive.  That was over fences.  On the flat she was LAZY, non-responsive, and oh yea LAZY!  Not that I’m really complaining, better lazy then crazy, but I mean come on Libby! Shes making me do most of the work!  Even still, I was happy with our ride.  She seems to be more comfortable through her back, which is making me happy.

Wednesday, we had a chilly cold front move in.  Chose to ride after class since it was in the 30’s when I woke up.  Bleh.  Even when we got to the barn after classes it was in the low 40’s.  We said we were going to just do a quick ride, but we ended up doing a jump school again.  I mostly did it since I was in the Dr. Bristol, twisted side dee, and I really wanted to see if it was just that day of the lesson, or if its just not a good jumping bit for us. 

Results: Definitely NOT a good jumping bit for us.  Since Libby has that nice low landing style on the landing side of the jump, without any type of leverage she just falls completely on the forehand.  This bit doesn’t give me any help in that respect, and it means I basically have to lift all 1000+ lbs of her on the landing side, something I obviously can’t do.  Since I don’t want to take away that style of landing, I just need a different bit.  Gave her lots of cookies anyways after the ride, even though I wasn’t happy with her afterwards, and groomed her up to put her away. 

Thursday, today, was my lesson.  I talked to the trainer (who I’m going to refer to as L from now on)  before hand, and I told her all the issues with bitting, and that I really feel that I need more leverage.  So I rode in my pelham again, with both reins this time, to show her what I mean.  And after watching Libby in this lesson, she wholeheartedly agreed.  Libby just needs a bit of help to lift herself up a bit after the jump.  But onto my actual lesson.  Libby was again super lazy.  We started to do some more structured lateral work, specifically doing turn on the forehands straight into trot, turn on the haunches straight into canter.  This really helped her get a little sharper with her transitions, and it made her use her hind end.  Something she really needs.  We spoke about trying to ride with a crop, just to see if the act of holding it alone will make her a bit more responsive on the flat.  We’ll see how that goes…

We also did a little grid work, with poles set in front of, and behind a jump.  Took Libby a few tries to realize that we wanted her to jump the pole as well, but she got it.  She was so much better today, be it because of the bit, or because she was just in a better mood.  But I was so happy with her, and how our lesson went.  She landed nice and softly, listened to all my little cues, and didn’t make a fuss about anything. I, on the other hand, have loads to work on, since my early realization that if I don’t pick at the distance it works itself out has suddenly disappeared.  In its place is the old Shelley, the one who has to pick at every distance, and inadvertently holds her poor ponys mouth more then she should in the air.  Ugh I’ve regressed!  I think I did a lot better then last lesson, but I should be done with that!!! The things time off will do to your learning curve…

Libby says get your act together Mom!

Side note: Finally got in one of the blankets/sheets I’m trying on Lib.  Its the Horze Avalanche style, and hopefully it’ll fit her.  The one I got in to try is just the sheet with no fill, and its in a 78″, but looks ENORMOUS.  Hopefully it works!

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