|Joan of Arc is a badass. I shall try to be more like her...|
Meridian Hill Park, Washington D.C.
Historical Fact of the Day: The only equestrian statue of a woman in D.C., and a gift to the women of the USA from the women of France.
|Neck wide at base = winning.|
In fact, he felt very, very off. I hoped off after 20 minutes (mostly at the walk) didn't loosen him up. I crossed my fingers that his funkiness was due to time off and fluctuating weather patterns, and hoped he'd be a little more supple with our next ride.
|Pictured: Pig looking less derpy than a gorgeous PSG trained warmblood. Marvel, for this is not a regularity.|
I am so glad I made that choice. Pig started out stiff and in a bad mood, grinding his teeth a minute I bridled him, However, being bareback allowed me to feel the places in his back where he was resistant and work on them immediately. I think this helped him feel a little better, as I was working on fixing him up rather than pushing him through a stiff spot. By the end of the ride, we had some lovely work under our belt. Pig was straighter in his lateral work, and starting to push more evenly with both hinds. His canter departs were much more uphill after fixing the push from behind, and he even stopped grinding his teeth.
Of course, riding bareback in the pitch black darkness of the 1/4 mile from my turnout to the indoor arena is maybe not the most confidence inspiring activity. Despite a rather dramatic spook at a newly installed feeder by both Pig and I, we did make it to and from our little turnout barn fairly unscathed.
|“But, soft! what light through yonder window breaks? |
It is the east, and
Pig started off incredibly stiff, but I tried to approach the situation with a lot of patience. I was persistent in asking him to work in a walking shoulder-in both directions until he loosened through the neck and back. Finally, I put him on the bit completely and asked for a trot. He was lovely. We maybe only worked for 20 minutes total, but he was absolutely with me for every second. We even did two relaxed changes on my aids both directions. This was huge, as my aids for a change often get completely ignored when riding outside of the arena.
I think we all just enjoyed being outside.
|"Arise, fair sun, and kill the envious moon, |
Who is already sick and pale with grief"
Pig was slightly more resistant to coming through, but I think much of that was me. I was stiff, and not weighting my right seatbone as much as I needed to. Once I figured that out (towards the end of the ride, of course), he was much more willing to step up and evenly into the bridle. This makes a whole month of me promising my horse I would do more yoga, and not following through. I'm feeling pretty bad about that. Time to step up.
The earlier work had been so resistant, we didn't even canter after a brief warm up. I wanted to instead focus on just getting both of us working well in changes of direction and bend. Sometimes you have to focus on the little stuff to better put together the bigger picture.
Dressage training, it's like working a puzzle.