Wednesday, December 31, 2008

last day of the year

Hey I have two *followers* thanks Vicky and Claire. Busy day today but managed to find half an hour for Moo. Vids show the massage, realease into the hand that I spoke of yesterday; a bit difficult on my own to capture on film so two separate vids showing the massage hand and the bit hand. Interestingly but not surprisingly he takes longer to release on the right side. Finally vid of the *down* after the massage.

Rode with one hand and no stirrups practising halts and turning, as much for me as him :-) he was a good boy.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

and there's more

'pics from autumn training, not today.
Well I don't intend making twice daily postings but this will get me up to date and then I can just make additions when I have something worth reporting.

I rode Moralejo in the manège after some prep work in the stable; mainly massaging the muscle behind the poll (splenius) to release it's tension. Today, as often, it was tight on the left side so I used my right hand to work it and my left hand on the front of his face to feel when it was letting go. I also find that if I just let the bit ring rest on my index finger and take a flexion to the left whilst massaging behind the poll I also get a better release. This muscle allows for stretching and bend/flexion in the neck; hardly surprising then that he finds bending to the right quite difficult and that he naturally comes back behind the hand rather than stretching forwards and down. I find after the massage that placing my hand over and cupping his poll I can get him to lower his head with no weight or pressure...I love doing that, it's like magic, lol.

Quick lunge before getting on, basically walk and trot and changing the rein after every circle; made easy by only ever lunging from a headcollar or centre ring on the cavesson.

Ridden work was great in walk, he has slowed his rhythm beyond what I thought he would and although he occasionally looses the rhythm he now carries himself away from my hands and works nicely in LY, S-in etc. good stretching down too.

The trot is great for the first ten strides but then he speeds up and we have to re-balance...just as we were in walk so hopefully it won't be long before the trot slows and balances.

a good days work

Cacahuète and Chapiro (midget) wait for tea

Firstly apologies to Claire for making her use blogger in French!! I didn't think but I have changed it to English now.
Yesterday was a good day for Moralejo, we worked on him relaxing his jaw in-hand and coming forwards to a *feel* on the bit (a little Baucher exercise that works well) rather than backing off it or curling behind it. Fidge got it straight away when I first tried it but It's taken Moo lots longer and he still doesn't walk into the contact but he does at least feel forwards and mouths the bit nicely. Worked on his giravolta too and finally he has got the idea of keeping up through his inside shoulder and not leaning in on me. I achieved this by using the butt of the whip gently on the girth to simulate my leg and then once he was forwards and up I could return the whip to touching his inside hind to move away from me and step under himself.

The midget got his first taste of a bit, happy mouth straight bar snaffle (just because it's easy for me to administer) and we popped it in, mouthed, clicked, removed it and treated. Repeated this four times and he was a star. Then we tried the saddle cloth, again clicking when he stayed still and treating when he stood completely still for me. He is very physically immature and I can't see me riding him until he's at least 4 but he needs to occupy his mind so it's ground work and really basic stuff until he develops more. So far I'm really pleased but it's early days.

Monday, December 29, 2008

a little history

OK, whilst I don't imagine the world will be reading this, it may be helpful to those who do find it to know a little about us.
I live in SW France in the Dordogne area of the Aquitaine region. I have lived here with my husband and daughter for 6 years along with our horses and dogs.
I had until a few weeks ago, three PRE's and a scruffy french pone. In an attempt to spend more time training and less time feeling guilty for not working them all I have sadly parted with Fidget my white grey. I miss him lots but he has gone to a fantastic home and I hope will teach his new *mum* as much as he taught me.
So now I am left with Moralejo, a 12 yo PRE and Chapiro (known as the Midget) a 3 yo PRE. I hope on here to regularly write up my training with these two horses...triumphs and disasters alike.
Pics of Fidge above when he was still here.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

moving 'pics...maybe

OK well it was a gorgeous day again, cold and bright so work for Moralejo in the school and cantering on tracks for mini-me and Cacahuète. With my very able photographer busy cutting wood for the next two months I attempted a few frames myself.....'fraid it's not really very good as the minute I let my body language drop then he comes in to see what I'm doing, lol.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

mmmm technology

Worryingly I've only just worked out how to update this. Oh well, better late than never and it has been Christmas!! Here is Moralejo having field fun today. More serious writing may follow tomorrow; as long as I remember how to.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

day one

In for a penny......I'm hoping that by 'officially' recording our training it will spur me on ('scuse the pun) to greater things...