M tacked him up (we are still working in his western saddle) and I worked him in the round pen each direction. M told me to really get after him when he breaks his gait or does not go forward when asked. He says it is important for a green horse to learn to go forward. It makes sense that it is easier to work with a horse when you have forward motion.
Next I worked on getting on and off. No reaction from Luxxx. He doesn't even care when I am popping the lunge whip at him either. I got on and M lead me around then let us loose in the round pen. This made me a bit nervous and M told me that the round pen is small enough that even if he did take off he would probably only run or buck for a lap or so. Ummm ok so I just need to stay on for a lap or so? Sure no problem.
Then M got on him. He got him going forward and as M calls it, loping. Luxxx initially didn't want to go forward and when M got after him Luxxx humped his back and bucked a little. I would say about 3 baby bucks and that was it. He had him cantering each direction and I would help by cracking the whip when needed. After he worked him awhile I got back on. I walked and reversed each direction a few times. We also practiced backing. Says one step back is good enough for now and to reward him. Before backing his head needs to be down. Luxxx did this perfectly. I typically like to talk to my babies and teach them voice commands. M says no. The only voice command I should use is whoa. He says the voice commands are spoiling the horses. They should respond to your aids and respond the first time you ask. Whoa is Luxxx's favorite word. He requires lots of leg and didn't mind me kicking at him. I need to work on looping my reins. He doesn't know contact and does better about going forward and relaxing when I give him his head. It is just my instinct to want a short rein being that I am riding an unbroken 3 year old. I am in awe of how M can just hop on this big baby with a loopy rein and not want to hold on for dear life.
I was more than pleased with Luxxx. M thinks in about 60 days I will have him working nicely in the arena. Sounds good to me. I will continue my lunge line work with him at home and trailer over to M's about once a week maybe more if time allows.
Poppy has been great. I'm really bummed about not showing this weekend and am kinda sorta entertaining the idea of shipping in to the AA show in Ocala on Sunday for the NAL classic. If not, I will definitely do their May show then I will save my pennies to hopefully hit the Tryon, NC show again in July.
I leave you with a video of Luxxx and his stall cleaning skills. Have a great weekend and kiss your ponies!