Sunday, April 12, 2009


Werther was really good yesterday. We did some serpentine work which we have not done in awhile. I got to do three loop serpentines, which I was better at, the two loop ones that go the longways of the arena really mess with my sense of space for some reason. We also did some shoulder in work which went well. I finally feel like I have the on the bit work for the walk and trot down, our big challenge right now is transitions. Because Werther is so lazy, in the downward transition from the walk to the trot, he wants to die and fall in on his shoulder. So I have to get him to keep going forward even in the downward transitions and keep a firm contact with my outside rein so he can't fall on his shoulder. The walk to trot is getting better, I still usually have to nail him with whip at least once before he moves off my leg, but it is getting better. It is the most difficult after we take a long walking break, because Werther thinks he is done. The canter transition is still the most difficult. He is still getting inverted in the transition. There was something new though, Sarah had me make him go in a really forward trot and get him round before I got into the canter, and he kept wanting to break into the canter. This is much better to me than offering that speed up into a faux extended trot rather than canter, but I have to make him canter on my terms otherwise the quality of the canter will just be mediocre. My biggest problem, and probably the majority of the cause of my troubles, is  that I am still not comfortable taking a feel in the transition. All my hunter training makes me want to throw the reins away to make him move forward. The last couple transitions, I felt like I had better control over my hands. I think things will get better, it will just take some time. I just really need to take my time in the canter transition and do everything very deliberately, and not rush anything. Werther is teaching me to be a good rider, he is well trained, but he does not have much tolerance for inaccurate riding. At the same time, he does not have the ambition to spend the energy it would take to get mad about it, he just won't give to you until you ask right and proper. 

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