Saturday, June 16, 2012

You Know That You Are A Horse Nut...

...if you smile during your horse's shenanigans.

Hey look!  An active hind leg.

Have I mentioned that Harley is a sensitive guy?  I am his only rider and have been for five years and counting.  He knows me very well and I know him.  If something in my riding changes, he notices immediately.  If I override or push too hard or ask for something at the wrong time, he responds accordingly.  Sometimes he tries to do what I am asking.  Sometimes he gives a huge response to match an overzealous aid.  Other times, he is just feeling exuberant and comes up with some shenanigans on his own.  I have ridden a couple mares in the past who displayed the same "particular" nature.  I credit them for preparing me for riding Harley.  He is a sweet, kind horse, but sometimes he needs to express his spirit!

My usual MO is to just keep riding.  I rarely punish, although I will make the work more difficult if he seems under-challenged or isn't committing to the aids.  I also frequently check my own position and my aids.  I strive to be fair.





 Proof that I am a horse nut: I wouldn't have him any other way!


The last photo is the next complete circle following Harley's shenanigans.  My seat is light, so I have risen out of the saddle here, but look how uphill his canter has become.  I believe that the slight changes in my position that I had been practicing from my lesson put more responsibility on his hind legs and he responded by really pushing off and shifting his balance around.  Sometimes he just needs a few jump starts!

16 comments:

  1. now that is a horse really engaging his hind end and using his body lol!

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  2. Wonderful pictures! So expressive :)
    It doesn't take much sometimes to change the behavior of a horse...and rider too ;)

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    1. Thank you and welcome!

      My husband was using the rapid photo function on our camera. Pretty neat.

      And very true!

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  3. That is a really nice uphill canter. Maybe he just needed to get the kinks out before he could do it :)

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    1. I think that was it exactly. Thankfully, he keeps his back up and stays straight. It really does feel like he is organizing himself.

      My teacher insists that a buck can be a means of re-establishing balance. I have ridden a fair number of ponies that bucked into the canter until they learned how to lift themselves smoothly from the trot. :)

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  4. I'd say that in that first photo, he is pushing really well from his hind. :) And I love how perfectly straight and balanced you are through the shenanigans. You do know your horse -- and he knows you. I'm sure he can hear you laughing. (I do the same).

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    1. *laughing*

      A sense of humor is an important training tool!

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  5. Even Harley's "shenanigans" are cute! ;)

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  6. Well I would say your seat is mighty fine .....that acrobatic display would unseat many. Glad he is feeling so well and happy....and glad you could smile with him

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  7. Harley is a very expressive guy. Love how he's really using his hind end and the rest of his body :) Nice to know you can stay with him through his shenanigans!

    Great pictures and like your new header too.

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    1. Thank you so much! Husband took the photos. :)

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  8. What a fun photo sequence, maybe not as fun to ride through, but sooo pretty :)

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