Thursday, January 1, 2009

Happy New Year!

Werther got the first day of the new year off, but I did get a chance to ride him on Wednesday. I went to the barn in the morning and it was -10 degrees when I got there so the horses were still inside. They were just starting to turn out as I was finishing tacking up so Werther started to get a little antsy. In between just having a lesson and not riding during the holidays because of my strep, I was really stiff so I had one of the guys hold Werther for me while I mounted. I took a feel of Werther's mouth and worked on getting him moving forward off my leg to get us both into dressage mode. He was good with the contact at the walk, be he got a little giraffe-y at the trot because by then he was the only horse in the barn. I should have done more circles to get him supple again more quickly. I did the spiral in leg yield out exercise from my last lesson, I was good leg yielding to the left, but it is much more difficult for me to go the right because I have to use my weaker left leg and I have harder time feeling what is going on underneath me. I practiced walk trot and trot canter transitions, to help get Werther more sensitive to my leg, and to get myself in the habit of keeping my fanny in the tack when I ask for an upward transition. He was very good picking up the right lead today, and more difficult with the left. Werther stayed on the bit and in a very nice frame while we canter and didn't root once, which made me really happy. Werther was a snot when I was untacking him though, he took off before I could get the cross ties snapped and trotted to the end of the barn to see where his friends were. For the new year goals for riding for the new year is to get really good on the flat with these dressage lessons, I want to be able to at least do a second level test by the end of the year. The second resolution is that once I get better on the flat, to start jumping again. What are your horse related (or not) goals for 2009?

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