Lots of catch up to do!
My new trainer / BO schooled Riva last Monday evening and had lots of good info for me. She started with a bit of ground work, moved to lounging without tack, then a bit of body work on her shoulders, neck, and poll, then a short lounge with tack, then a ride. First off, she complimented me on how well I have done with Riva to this point. She did a lot of turns on the haunches and forehand to loosen her up - worked on getting her very forward at the trot and let her canter if she offered. She worked on the beginning of getting Riva to move off of seat only from halt to walk and walk to trot. She felt good about how Riva responded and that Riva was sweet, willing, and tried for her. She will ride Riva again for me this Sunday.
I had my second lesson on the schoolmaster last Friday evening. We briefly worked on a nice swinging walk, just off my seat. I did much better at this than the first lesson and we quickly moved up to trot. We started with a bit more contact and then went to a very forward trot on the buckle. It is so fun to ride her - she can fly :) My trainer then showed me some stetching, flexing exercies to do that I can do with Riva - getting her to turn on the haunches and forehand. We moved up to canter and I still was having trouble timing the cue. She ended up having me cue her from walk and I did fine with this. My main issue is sitting the trot - which I need lots of practice! - and then giving the canter cue with my seat and legs.
My trainer said I showed much improvement from my first lesson - my foot/leg position was better and my posture was better, ie not leaning so far back. I will have another lesson this Friday on the school master - I love her!
Friday I took the day off work and went to a clinic put on my Toine Hoefs - his clinic was being hosted by the barn where Alexis is a working student. It was very interesting - I was able to see lessons at a variety of different levels - from training level thru Grand Prix. Alexis was fortunate to be included and took a lesson on a horse that is in training at the facility. She was able to be instructed on counter canter - which she has not done much. She was to have another lesson last night - I have not talked with her yet to see how it went.
Saturday, we headed to Come Again Farms in Sheridan for the last combined show of the season. Alexis rode for the owners of a young Arabian that is being trained at her working student position. Lex has been riding this horse and took it to two jump lessons prior to the show. They competed Green as Grass and ended up 4th - she was able to get her horse over every jump with no faults - so the owners were thrilled :) The owners bought this mare for their daughter two years ago - who is a tiny 10 year old now - and the daughter has not been able to show her yet. The mare is very nervous, spooky, and needs a calm confident rider. Lex did so well with her - it was fun to see Lex in this role...my little girl is growing up.
I rode Riva yesterday afternoon/evening...outside...in the wind storm...and she was a pro! She definitely prefers being ridden outside as opposed to the indoor and I don't blame her. If we were able to ride year round outside, I would be thrilled. But since we live in Indiana, it just is not pratical. My husband thought I was crazy for taking her outside due to the wind. Riva was very up for the lounge - wanted to canter and canter and canter. But once I got on, she settled and listened and was great. We did a lot of trotting - bit of canter both directions - and worked on moving off the seat. I even finished up with a walk around the pond, just as it was getting dark.
Hard to believe it is the middle of November - with temps in the 60's today. Driving home from the barn last night, we saw a few houses lit up for Christmas...way to soon for that!