Rode Joy last night. I had low expectations. Mainly because I currently don’t have any goals for her… other than I’d like to canter around in some semblance of balance and with the the correct bend.
We’re headed into winter where riding will probably cease from December to March. Next spring I’ll freak about how we’re no where near ready for even Training Level… STILL.
I found if I shorten my reins to the point where I feel like there’s 2 inches left, then Joy feels more connected in the bridle. As if too much slack leaves too much room to squiggle and question.
We’ll see how this works long term. Doesn’t appear to be hurting anything, yet. I still can’t get a true connection from hind legs to bit yet. I feel like i’m getting really close at times, and other times we’re no where near it. I think I’ll need professional help to achieve it. Hopefully I won’t have ruined her too badly by then.
I’ve been working on developing left hind strength. A big Thank You to Alli Farkas for the suggestion. It seems to be working!! I have some research on exercise that I’ll post later.
Another thing I found that helped was if I do trot work on the box and kick her hind end over when going to the left that she is better able to pick up the canter relatively straight. I have to do shoulders going to the right. The haunches continually shift way left when going left. The shoulders pop left when going right. If I don’t kick her butt over going left, then she gets in her own way and bucks.
Every issue I have right now is straightness related. Some rides I never get even slightly straight. Some rides I do. When she’s straight and pushing from behind I get a wonderfully soft, balanced canter in either direction. It feels awesome. It feels like a big horse canter. It feels very uphill and adjustable. When she’s not straight … It’s an utter wreck.
We’re usually not straight. 😂
I have no idea how the canter actually looks when she’s balanced. I can’t seem to pull it off when I video myself. I’m just going to keep pretending we look like Charlotte and Valegro cantering around being magnificant. 😉
This little pony is a try-er though. She might get frustrated, but she doesn’t quit on you. She keeps trying. She doesn’t blow up, she doesn’t refuse, she just expresses her confusion and if you break it back down then she’ll try again.
I love that about her!