|Blink. Blink. Polo wraps?|
|Pre ride happiness|
Then we moved to cantering. I got her going, but just barely. I asked for more forward and she hunched and kicked the wall. I tapped her and she hunched again and kicked her leg up at me. We struggled for a few minutes with her dropping back to trot and then snarking at me when I asked for forward.
"Hop off!", my trainer called to me. "Leila's gonna get on her and work this out."
They don't have you hop off unless things are serious. I think Laura was just tired of the pony's attitude. It was time for a wakeup call about attitudes. Poor, poor pony.
Laura knows my pony is sensitive. She said it could be the polo wraps, it could be the saddle fits a bit different. But there's nothing that's hurting her and she needs to stop copping an attitude.
Leila hopped on and was told "Ask her to canter. Ask her sloppily and don't ask lightly. (this was to simulate my crappy, heavy, sloppy canter departs since Leila is naturally a very light rider) If she kicks out at you, keep after her until she's done."
The idea is that my pony needs to know that kicking out is never the answer and that forward is. I'm really bad about not quite getting after her effectively about this. Yes, I'm a bit of a nagger. It's the chicken way of doing things.
So Leila asks for canter and my pony kicks out. This began the funniest fifteen minutes I've ever seen. I really wish I had videotaped the ride because it was kind of amazing. Ever seen a horse walk on it's two front legs? Me either...until last night. My pony kicked out her left leg, then her right leg, then both legs, then her left leg, then her right leg. She kicked the wall. She kicked her belly. She kicked the dressage whip. She almost kicked the stirrup iron! There was no space between the kicks and she was doing this weird canter/gallop thing the whole time on her front legs. She looked just like an angry cat, hissing and spitting and trying to get something off it's paws. Leila just sat still and kept getting after her. Around and around they went, Tessa kicking and bucking and kicking and bucking and kick, kick, kicking. One leg, the other leg. She was practically dancing.
Then, finally, she decided that forward might be easier and broke into a hand gallop. After that they did five more trot to canter transitions with Leila asking very politely and Tessa responding equally politely.
|Our final jump of the night. Twenty inches!!|
Then I got back on my forward horse and jumped this. Twenty inches of terror, right there. But we jumped it. It was interesting that after ten minutes of me riding, Tessa started to lose her forward again. Not anything major, but it was there. Just something else for me to chew on and figure out.
|Sweaty pony in her cooler and polo wraps.|