Thursday, March 17, 2016

Turning Point

I'm at the two week mark post-surgery and I feel a lot better. Still painful of course, but more capable. I can walk almost at a normal ground-covering pace now, just being careful not to jolt. On rough ground I have to take it slower.

I got Duncan out for the first time, counting on him to be good so I wouldn't accidentally hurt myself. He was. :) I was a bit slow for his taste, which made for a good teachable moment.

I gave him a lot of time to graze at the far end of the pasture so he'd feel like leaving the other horses was a good thing. It's hard for me to stand and do nothing. A good teachable moment for me. :)

We did some walking circles in the round pen. Not asking for anything but continuation, waiting for him to relax. It took a while, but it happened.

Another thing we're working on is dropping his head willingly and keeping it down until I release him. He does great in the halter but has some resistance when I signal with my hand on his poll. Eventually I'd like to turn it into a cue I can give from the saddle, using pressure on his neck.
I've been reading a book about endurance riding and getting a lot of food for thought about proper conditioning, balance, and teaching the horse to use its body correctly, which of course means the rider needs to ride well. I don't plan on ever doing a 100 mile ride in one day, but with the things I ask my horses to do in the mountains, they could use some better conditioning.

1 comment:

Linda said...

It's good to see you're getting better and out with your horses again! You'll have to share the insights from that book with us as you get further along in it. I'm starting to do a lot of work lowering the head, too.