The boys are living out now and it makes a huge difference to mine and their frame of mind. Of course they are happy as pigs in poop with all the grass coming through and seem to have happily slipped into the new routine. Chapsi no longer guards the pone all the time and the threesome seem content.
Yesterday we had a 'family' day with shopping and a McDo in Linoges; by the time we got back there was only really time for a groom and foot pick in the field. Moo trundled up first and had some good scratching to relieve the itchiness of a shedding coat. Chapsi decided he was missing out so came and took Moo's place; no barging or pushing he just came over and Moo walked off. Chapsi was excellent and stood perfectly still for scratching and feet but when I wanted to move off and see the pone he wouldn't let me. Nothing sinister, no aggression, he just circled me and stopped me going to the pony. After a little impromptu liberty work I managed to extricate myself and give the pone a quick check over, no time to groom as Chapsi was back to claim me!
Today I worked Moo on the lunge. I worked without the whip because since doing the liberty work with him I've realised how 'big' the whip makes my loose hand aiding (loose as in the hand not holding the lunge rein). It's a bit like 'if you've got it flaunt it' and I was rather over flaunting it! I'm not decrying the thought that the whip is an extension of your arm or saying that I won't ever use a whip again; just that if you can use a hand raise to go forward then imagine how over-egged the whip raise is, it just gets magnified by the time it reaches the end of the whip.
Anyway, he worked well and was very calm right from the start; we began with the massage in movement for his neck and he was quite tight (as usual) near to the poll (well the atlas/axis to be more correct) and a gentle massaging in walk followed by a stretch down seems to really release the area. I'm sure that tension here may be the cause of some of his longer standing problems. I digress. The other thing I finally came to grips with was the 'driving' body aid on the left rein. I'm guessing that being right handed has helped make me less able on the left rein but today I could really feel when I lost the connection. I found that by focussing on a line drawn (imaginary of course) from his wither to his outside ear and lining my eye up with this line, I could keep him forwards into the circle on the tricky left rein. Really chuffed that I got that sorted. Doubt that's made any sense to anyone but me, LOL but just writing it down helps.
Oh too late for Chapsi work write up, rattled on too long about Moo!