March 06, 2011

Whip it...into shape....shape it up!

Today's post is about two things mainly...whipping my leg (heels down) into shape and whips left on the ground throughout the property.

First off, I arrived as usual and got set up in the indoor arena for tacking Willy up.  There was a whip on the ground and a few piles of horse poop that someone didn't clean up.  Uge.  If the rules are to clean up after your horse in the common areas of the property why do none of the Youth Ranch kids do it? 

Anyways, I tacked up Willy and headed to in the smaller arena to work on the trot and the "angles in my ankles".  As I headed over to the ring there was yet another whip just laying about on the ground.  Granted after my ride I picked up both whips and some extra poops along with those left by the Willy Goat.

In the arena I got Willy into a trot, not quite the BIG trot but that was fine.  I worked on keeping my toes in and heels down.  I glanced at my feet a few times to make sure they were doing what I wanted since I didn't have an instructor on the ground to help me out.  It sure was a work out as I worked hard to stretch down into my heel and also squeezing to keep Willy moving on.  Finally I decided to move on and just play around the property.

I did some more trots, and also a walk serpentine up one side of the big arena.  Then I did a couple canters.  I think Laurie is right it's that big trot that scares me and gets me tense before the canter...and then I guess it takes a lot of will power afterwards to relax again back into the sweet canter stride.  I've worked with Willy a bit to get him to transition to the canter from not such a big, fast trot.  I'm able to stay relaxed better since he's not doing that huge trot and making me tense up.  I love the canter and Willy does have a nice one when he doesn't try to kick into high gear and gallop up the hills!  He seemed very content and responsive after working at the trot in the arena so he was happy to canter in a nice rocking horse sort of way.

The day was getting pretty chilly so I called it quits, untacked Willy and groomed him down.  The goats in their pen were being noisy, clopping up and down a ramp in their area and butting each other on the heads.  It was cute to watch.  I call Willy, Willy Goat since he has very long shaggy hairs under his face for his winter coat. 

I mucked out his pen, said hello to Two Socks and Misty.  Two wheel barrows later the area was nice and clean so I gave carrots to everyone, including the cute little minis.  I feel like today was a pretty successful day.  I worked hard on my heels, not sure how good the end result was but I did my best and that's what counts.  I had two very nice canters that I felt relaxed during, the second having a better transition to the trot on my part.  Very well balanced and smooth.  Until next time...I only have 3 more visits with Willy, it saddens me but we knew at the beginning of the lease that it was not going to end up with me buying Willy.  He was just going to be my lease horse.  Pstar on the other hand could very well end up being my first horse after a period of leasing her...we shall see.  I hugged Willy goodbye and headed home to a nice warm house!

1 comment:

lytha said...

my trainer used to tell her students to stretch out their calves by standing on a stair on th balls of your feet and letting your heels sink down, holding them like that. that is an exercise i tried to do often when i encountered stairs during the week.