Saturday, 28 September 2013

[Monthly Review] September 2013

This will be as a slight shock to some of you as I have actually posted it on time (well maybe a couple of days early) rather than in the middle of the next month for a change! I have been super organised and have written things down in a little note book about what has happened during September with myself and Pea as normally I tend to forget! Oops!

This month started off well with Pea getting much stronger on the lunge. I normally just lunge him in his bridle at the moment as I still haven't got round to buying a roller and don't really like lunging him in his saddle, but there are the odd times that I borrow a friends roller. Before, Pea used to fall in quite a bit on the lunge, but lately he has gotten much better at keeping to a good circle shape. We still need to work on transitions, especially at the beginning as he just likes to keep trotting and not walk and definitely not stand but I like to try and do a few transitions to keep him listening to me and not think that he's just free to do as he pleases. His canter on the lunge is much better and he finds it easier to maintain, though sometimes being a bit cheeky and deliberately trying to turn in just to let out a silly little buck and speedy get away when I send him on! But he is good the majority of the time, and much better than how he used to be when lunging as he used to refuse to move anywhere and just keep turning in at me and be a general pain! 

Riding wise he has been much more forward and generally feels happier in his work since I changed his bit back to his loose ring snaffle. He's a lot softer on the bit in trot and starting to stay in a nice outline for longer, though there are still a few times when he decides to go all giraffe like. His left bend is improving as he tends to find that quite difficult so I have spent time doing lots of circles of varying sizes as well as transitions on the circles to get him thinking more and also maintaining the bend as he can sometimes come above the bit in transitions. His canter has also gotten a lot better. He still goes onto the incorrect lead a few times, but he is striking off on the correct lead more and maintaining the canter for longer, not doing a few strides and insisting on stopping! 

However, last week (20th) I had a lesson and Pea was really naughty, hardly cantering and then when coming out of canter stopping and bucking and not really wanting to move forwards. The next day he seemed a bit better but was being a bit silly with canter again, but I think part of this was due to me schooling in the arena with the jumps and he was thinking he was going to jump so got in a bit of a strop that he wasn't allowed to try and aim at the fences! A few days later I went for a walk with a friend, as her horse is only allowed to walk at the moment, and then after I went in the arena to do a bit of schooling and my friend decided to come and watch. She noticed that he seemed a bit stiff and iffy over his back in canter and although he kept going on the correct lead he was getting all 'stuffy' and bucking to break out of canter. The next day I decided to lunge him and he seemed fine but I decided to spend the week lunging him to try and get him a bit better with canter. However, I lunged him with the roller on one day and as I was warming up I didn't attach his bungee. I decided to give him a canter before putting the bungee on, just to see how he was, and he was really stuffy, refusing to go on the correct canter lead, falling in, everything that he hadn't done without the roller! I tried on both reins with the same behaviour, but when I took the roller off and lunged him, he was happily cantering and going much better! I am now waiting for my chiro to get back to me and hoping she can come out reasonably soon as I am a bit paranoid about working him as I think there could be something wrong with his back. Therefore he is now doing very little other than some lunging and some gentle hacking to keep him ticking over until the chiro can come out. I'm hoping it's nothing serious, but I am almost certain that there is something wrong with him as he had been going so well and now hardly seems to want to canter again or anything. I shall keep you all updated when the chiro has come out! 

Thanks for reading, 
Laura & Pea x

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