Thursday, December 29, 2011

The Rodeo Lesson

It was time for me and the pony to work. it. out.  We have been hovering on the edges the last few weeks.  She fusses.  She pushes into my space.  She swishes her tail and back talks me when I ask for forward.  She ignores my leg and then ignores the whip.  Repeatedly.  She breaks to trot when we canter and threatens to canter when we trot. 

So today, I was given spurs to wear.  This was actually good for me because it forced me to keep my leg quiet so I didn't accidentally stick her with a spur.  They were the tiniest of baby spurs but you wouldn't know it from the way the Princess reacted.

So we got geared up and began.  Trot.  Swish tail.  Throw head.  Suck back.  Whip.  More tail swish.  More head tossing.  More sucking back.  More leg, more whip.  More sassing.  Leg, whip.  Leg, spur.  The 'thunk' I heard was her leg kicking out at the spur and connecting with the wall.  Okay, that's okay.  But then she's back to seeing how slow she can go.  More leg.  Then, spur.  Little buck.  Tap with the whip.  Little buck.  Tap with the whip and leg.  Bucking is not the answer, forward is.  Tap again and ask with leg and spur.  BIG BUCK and forward into trot.  A lovely, energetic trot.  We trotted.  We cantered.  We had some little bucks and kicks out at the wall and the spur, but overall some really great work.  Then we walked on a long rein for a few minutes.  That's when I knew the argument was really coming.  Because of course, L wanted me to go back to work after the walk on a long rein and the Princess wanted to be done.  

Okay, pony, we're going forward right back into energetic trot right?  Uhm, this isn't energetic.  Remember my leg?  No?  How about the whip?  No?  How about the spur?  Don't want to trot energetically, that's fine.  We'll canter instead.  Which turned out to be a twenty meter circle of buck, buck, kick at the wall, refusing to canter, buck, buck and then a buck so big and a twist in the air that as we came back down to earth I let some expletives fly.  But I stayed on and I pushed forward and our next circle was lovely and forward and soft.

We ended the lesson after switching directions again and making sure that I was the one in charge of when we were trotting and when we were cantering.  We've had some of our best trot work yet.  L reassured me that everything Tess has thrown at me is very normal young horse stuff, especially mares.

p.s. My New Year's resolution is totally going to have something to do with more blog pictures.  I need more pictures!!

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