Monday, February 23, 2015

Horse Show Week!

Once again Poppy and I are gearing up to go to HITS on Thursday!  I got some jump schooling in this weekend.  My grass footing is still mushy in spots due to all the rain we have had so I didn't jump much but she was feeling great so we will just go with that.  There is more rain coming so I hope I can get some hacks in before we leave.

I also rode the baby Monster.  Apparently pulling his stall mats up 2 days in a row while I was riding Poppy made him tired. He was pretty lazy and fussy at times.  I get the fussy part---he's 3 and has not been ridden consistently so he gets a pass on that.  Trainer wanted him in either the neck stretcher or draw reins at the show so I thought I would try him in one when I rode Saturday.  I typically don't like him in either.  I only lunge in side reins or the neck stretcher but decided I'd try riding in the neck stretcher.  Nope, I REALLY don't like him in it.  He tries to root down.  I can get him soft and into the bit eventually but I can do the same without one and not have to deal with the rooting so what's the point.  Not every horse benefits from these aides.  We are only 12 days...12 DAYS...from clocks going forward which will allow me to get the Monster back into regular work!!  He is getting better at steering and his circles are less lopsided.  Whoa is still his favorite word. He really needs to work on responsiveness to leg.  He is pretty dead sided, worse to the right.  Verbal commands are helpful but it should not take us half a lap around the paddock to canter.  Then one lap later he's like "cantering is sooooo exhausting.  Lets take a break."  When I got off I felt like I had worked harder than he had.  I was exhausted and even out of breath.  So much to work on...

Tired baby Monster.

Ahem...notice the mane in the picture though???  It's growing!!!!!  I am praying to the Mane Growing Gods and using MTG every 5-7 days.  And I'm sure the cold weather is helping.  Whatever, I will take it.  I just want it to grow out!


  1. Every horse is so different. Miles HATES draw reins, but goes okay in the neck stretcher.

  2. I get the same result in the draw reins with him. He's lazy so it's like he uses them to lay on. With babies you just try a bunch of things and see what works

  3. 'whoa is his favorite word' - lol! he says this whole 'work' thing really isn't his style :) good luck getting a few more hacks in!

    1. Coughing or throat clearing is also interpreted at whoa

  4. I am SO ready for the clocks to move. Also excited for you to go back to HITS and kill it :)

  5. So cute in that pic, you guys will do awesome as always at the show I'm sure!

  6. I have a 5 year old who was started late and has only a 4 months of rides on him. He has the same characteristics---dies at the canter, I worked hard to keep him going, not responsive to my leg, loves whoa. What has really helped is getting him out of the arena (we have a huge track around the property he is at) and just letting him trot. I don't have to use my leg at all (what a relief) and he is learning how to move his body forward. Also, poles/cavalettis have been great. It has kept things interesting for him and they can be adjusted to force him to work his body. Now that we are jumping a bit he is even more perky and it has helped his flat work be less dull. With my horse it has been a combo of learning how to use his body, improved fitness, keeping things interesting, and finding places to not be constantly nagging him.