Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Between lessons

Boomer and I have been working really hard this past week at getting consistent contact.  We have had a few really great days where he is really on the bit most of the time and then we have had a few bad days where he was resistant and tossing his head, refusing to submit.  One thing I noticed happening lately is he is foaming much more while we ride.  He gets a really great lather going, but only on the left side of his mouth.  I mentioned it to Karin a few days before my lesson and she was so excited to have the 'clue' that he wasn't really 'coming through' on the right side.  I had always considered his right side to be his good side, but I think that it is the side with contracted muscles, so it makes bending left more difficult, but that doesn't mean that he is 'better' to the right, its just easier for him to bend that direction.  The foam on the left only kind of proves that he isn't really connecting on the right, he is just easily bending that way.

The other thing we are working on is getting him quicker to respond to my canter aids.  I have been laying my legs on him like I want the canter and thinking in my head, 'canter, canter, canter' then I ask after a few strides of preparation.  I can feel him tense up as I 'think' about it, but he canters as soon as I ask.  I am not worried about the contact right now, I just want him quicker to my aids.  I think once I can control the anticipation, the transition will be much smoother.  

For my birthday, I got John to come out and film my ride.  That day was an OK day, Boomer had been both much better and somewhat worse earlier in the week, but this clip gives a good representation of what I am working with.  He is still resistant and wants to toss his head and hollow out his neck, but he seems to be getting the idea of getting a more relaxed jaw and neck and starting to carry the contact for longer periods of time.  What I would really love would be to have someone film my lessons.  That would be awesome!


Shanster said...

Hooray for green foam! Sera DROOLS and DRIPS and FOAMS like a sud machine... good lord. Brandon was always more thru on one side vs. the other and it's such a good tell that foam... You guys look GREAT! :)

joshu said...

Nice ride! Did Boomer choose the music?