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Thursday, August 12, 2010

A Great Lesson

I had a lesson yesterday with Ryan Yap at 1pm. Other than lightly perspiring (who am I kidding, it was gross and sweat was dripping down my back and off of my face), the lesson was a total success. I'd be lying if I said I had 100% confidence when I went into it. Since the last one was so bad, I was scared that Fire was going to have a repeat performance again this time.

I recently changed Fire's bit from a hollow broken snaffle, to a copper solid snaffle. I think the added weight and different type of metal in his mouth has been very helpful in our training. I find that he is wanting to hold the bit more consistently and since he now has more "respect" for it the connection is easier to find and his ability to just disregard the bit and toss it in his mouth is a lot less.

In the lesson we worked hard on our downward transactions and stretching. Since Fire hadn't properly been sitting with his bit for some time, he had learned a few bad habits. He likes to pull through the rein and pull me off of my center of balance when I ask for a downward transition, mostly from the tort to the walk. Ryan had me doing 10m circles and asking for the transitions within the circle, so that Fire had to push out and hang onto the outside rein. It really started to work with him, but we stopped before getting a "breakthrough" with it because of Fire's previous history with getting upset at the walk and rearing.

Once the lesson was over Ryan said that he could tell a big difference in the horse and he was stronger than the last time that he came out. He said that our next aim should be to start working shallow serpentines at the canter and counter canter to try to gain more strength. We should be able to set oen up again for this next Wed... so as long as the weather cooperates (can we say 105 degrees with the humidity?!?!) I should be able to work him through some more things and go even further for our next lesson. I'm sure I won't be so stressed this next time.

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