Just realized I have not posted all week...busy with work and getting back in the routine after 4 weeks off. So - a little recap of mine & Riva's week:
Sunday - lunge work first then rode in the indoor. My husband was watching from the side of the arena and this seems to upset Miss Emotional Mare. I guess she thinks he is a threatening horse or something. She tends to try and snap at him, bear her teeth, cow kick out, etc. as she goes by him...sigh. Anyway, we worked on getting her forward - trot to walk to trot transitions. I got her forward enough at the trot to try a straight line canter, but ended up pulling her back due to another rider in the indoor and my lack of steering with Riva at canter. Will attempt when alone!
Monday - just free lunged Riva in the indoor. She really likes this and listens fairly well. Occasionally, she will get fast and throw a happy buck or two, but over all fun and easy to free lunge. Certainly WAY better than our 2 OTTBS :)
Tuesday - lunge and rode in the indoor. It was sooo very hot - our temps have been 90+ for something like 15 days - and I intended to make the ride time short. Riva Diva wanted to argue about EVERTHING, though, so the ride lasted awhile till I was reasonably satisfied. She was moving great on the lunge work - lovely trot and canter work. Got on to ride and started her on a to the buckle walk - she liked this and was moving out happily. I picked up the reins to trot - and she argued. After some convincing with the crop, she started moving. We were getting enough forward that I asked for a left lead canter - and got it! Just 3 - 4 strides, but it felt nice! I made a fuss over her and thought I would try for the right. She picked it up, but did not hold it. Bad thing was she slipped in the footing a few times when we were working on left lead trot and think this may have irratated her 'bad' left knee. When I went back to asking for trot on the left lead, she refused...hard, ie cowkicks, bucks, head throwing. But she would happily trot on the right lead. I thought I better take this as Riva trying to tell me something and quit. I walked her out - on the buckle with dropped stirrups. I cold hosed her knee and gave her some Bute.
Wednesday - decided to rest that knee and just took her for a 20 minute hand walk around the pond and property. I always use the rope halter for this and she knows this means work time and no grass snatching.
Thursday - needed a change of pace from arena work - so I rode in the outside jump arena. First, I lunged her in the indoor to check her gaits and make sure the knee was not giving her problems. She was FULL of energy - and moving well, yeah! Our temps were only in the 80's today and less humidity - think the horses were likely the weather change. I walked her out to the outdoor jump arena and got on. My husband was in there with the tractor getting some weeds out and had the gate open. Normally not an issue - open gate or the tractor. Tractor - no problem. Open gate - lets just say Riva notices everything. We did some warm up at walk - moved in to trot work with very little discussion. So,,,she was happily trotting on the left rein - nice and forward - and she picked up a canter. Well - good! Felt so smooth - best I have ever rode on her - and we were heading down the long side. I thought - since we have NO steering - she will break to trot by the corner, no problem. But noooo... Riva cantered right out the open gate. She did stop nicely, when asked, and did not tear back to the barn with me on board :) So, I was so thrilled with the canter I just could not get after her for taking the open gate out. Turned her around and marched her back in the arena and went back to work. I got one more left lead canter - this time with a closed gate. Really good ride - lots of forward and happy horse / girl moments!
Riva gets Friday, Saturday, and Sunday off - daughter is competing in her first sanctioned 2 day event at Hoosier Horse Park in Edinburgh. She and her horse will be competing in Beginner Novice. Looking forward to cheering them on and playing show mom! On Sunday, after the show, daughter and horse will be coming back home - after their summer away at L's working student position. Looking forward to having her back and getting her to ride my girl a bit so I can watch!