Monday, May 23, 2011

The difference a week makes…

Ten days ago, I was wringing my hands in frustration. I took a deep breath and changed my approach. I had The Situation turned out every day into the arena to run and blow off some steam. Normally, he gets turned out in our little bronc pen, but I started to think, maybe he was needing to stretch his legs more. For two days I watched him lapping the arena in the mornings at a dead run. He was better to ride the very first day. He was no longer looking for a fight and went loping around flicking his little ears. Sometimes even show horses need to be able to go out, cut loose and play.

I also made the decision to move him into a little leverage bit. I typically use a Billy Allen when I step a horse up. He will be shown in a smooth snaffle in the futurities, but it was time to change things up for him. Occasionally in a snaffle, even the handiest trainer can tend to get a little busy with their hands. I think that it can make colts a little cranky. I also think that it is important to switch things up to keep their minds fresh. I find that in the leverage bit, I let him pack his head more and I am lighter with my hands. It also helped me keep a little better control of his shoulders in the lead change.

The lesson to be learned here is that a few bad rides is not necessarily a set back. It is just a part of the growth process. It is your job to train unconditionally with a level head. So we are back on track, The Situation and I, and we are looking forward to getting in the showpen as soon as the horse industry is back open for business!

1 comment:

  1. I was feeling that I was having a period of set backs as well, and had posted it on my own blog. Then a reader commented saying that we need to remember that riding is a constant dance between ourselves and our horse. With that dance there will be fumbles, but as long as we accept and move on with them, when they come we wont be so upset and not ready. Take the good with the bad because it is always a learning experience, and the horses always have more to teach us. Your situation sounds similar to this advice I was given, and it sure seems like The Situation was just trying to tell you that he was feeling springtime, feeling good, and needing to stretch his legs. Glad things are working out.