I rode indoors Thursday and Friday night. There were three riders in there on Thursday, two were cantering around the whole arena and jumping jumps. The other gal was working on some dressage moves. The two jumpers were making lots of clucking sounds and Dani seemed to be trying to figure out if it was me making those sounds!
We began with having mounting issues again and saddle sliding over on my rolly polly mare when I tried to mount from the ground. I later had issues with her standing near the mounting block. At least the cinching was not too bad, she moves around a bit but I stay with her. She moves less than previous times, I think she realizes that I will only cinch hole by hole and not hurt her. I try not too but I can't seem to get the saddle tight enough to not slide over on mounting. I finally got her to stand still and mounted up from the block.
I was pretty tense as we rode around, the clamoring of cantering hooves and constant clucking in the background made it hard to concentrate and I was worried that Dani would take off from thinking the clucking was for her. It was like I had little bees buzzing around me, but this is a large arena with plenty room to share, I need to get used to this constant activity and so does Dani.
She's very sensitive to the leg, which can be good, and I mostly turned her with my seat. I do need to get her used to my legs on her all the time, relaxed of course and that just feeling leg on her doesn't mean I'm asking for speed. Several times she sped up like she was trying to trot, I need to work on keeping her at a walk and relaxed. I also need to sit back and relax myself!! We did some circles and serpentines, changes of direction to get her soft and listening to me. I also flexed her left and right, she's very soft there. I never fully calmed down but think the ride was a success at conquering my fears.
|Bad picture of me starring down while riding, not good!!|
Picture is from last weekend riding, I didn't have any
from these two days indoor rides.
The next day we worked on mounting mainly, the saddle slid again and it was cinched up tight from what I could tell. Uge, I'm not sure what I'm going to do about this issue, I can't seem to tighten it further but it swings around with the pressure from the stirrup. The mounting block is the best bet for this and perhaps as the saddle breaks in more it will become easier to tighten properly. I had some of these issues with Willy I recall but still, I know it's not fun for Dani!
I worked with Dani around the mounting block and moved her hips away in a circle quickly if she backed or tried to move. Then we went back to the block to rest her with me standing on it and loving on her, then leaning on the saddle etc. I went over this procedure a few times with then actually mounted. She started to walk off, another thing I'll have to work with her on, so I said Whoa and sat deep. I got settled but then moved around side to side making sure not to cue to walk, I'm needing to get her desensitized to me getting settled, straitening the saddle etc. Then when I was ready I made sure that the walk cue was as distinctive as I could make it.
I walked her around, did some turns, a little jigg here and there as it seemed she wanted to trot...not sure what I'm doing to cause that but I tried to sit back and relax. We did some stops, then went back near the mounting block, dismounted and brought her over to it again and stood her there with lots of praise while I stood on it and stroked her. It was a short "ride" I'll need a good amount of time to repeat this procedure over and over, getting her to stand still and realizing that if she doesn't she'll be worked, I can get a lead line for that and really work her to make the point. I was to have a lesson with Laurie on Saturday so I would suggest that be a big part of the lesson to see what she suggests.