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Thursday, February 2, 2012

Follow Up Saddle Fitting & February

Last evening was my follow up saddle fitting with my County saddle rep, Sara Ivie.  She first checked Riva's back briefly for any soreness.  She said her withers area was a bit sore, but said it was most likely left over from the Kieffer getting too small for her.  She then put the saddle on Riva's back without the pad to check the fit.  I told her the only thing I had noticed was the cantle area bouncing a bit when I rode.  She had me tack her up and then checked the fit with me sitting on her, then had me start riding.  Sara watched as I warmed her up, from all angles.  She decided the back needed some more flocking to stop the bounce in the cantle and one side needed a bit more flocking to create the best fit for Riva.  She took the saddle out to her truck and made the necessary adjustments, and once again had me hop on so she could watch me ride.  I thought the saddle fit great before the appointment, but now - custom fit to Riva - awesome!  It just feels so solid underneath me while I ride.  LOVE :)

After Sara left, I put Riva on the lounge to work on her transitions and to sharpen up her responses to cues.  I rode her again briefly after the ground work.  I worked on some spiraling circles - started at a 20 meter circle and spiraled in to a 10 meter circle, then back out to 20.  She did well with this - her balance is improving since I have been asking her to step under herself by doing turns on the forehand and haunches.

Tonight...I rode outside...on February just a fleece jacket and breeches!  When we pulled into the drive at the barn this evening, I saw that two riders were working their horses outside.  The BO had groomed the outside dressage arena and the weather could not have been better.  I moved really fast getting Riva tacked up since the sun was starting to go down.  By the time I walked Riva outside, the other riders were finished and headed back in to the barn.  Riva grew to about 18 hands as I walked her to the mounting block - you would think she never gets to go outside!  But she was a good girl and stood very still as I got on. 

I headed her for the dressage ring and after one walk lap, put her in trot.  She was lovely!  No Spring sillies for this girl just yet.  She was listening, forward, and energetic.  We worked lots of diagonals and figure 8's.  I also worked her in the spiraling circles again.  After finishing with the circles, she offered a very nice forward trot down the long side before we finished up.  Just wish I had pics and or video!  My husband was talking for most of my ride to new boarders at our barn.  They had test rode the Kieffer I have for sale and were discussing with my husband.  Fingers crossed the saddle works for them.

So the ground hog saw his shadow today and that means 6 more weeks of Winter.  As my husband said tonight, though, if we have 6 more weeks of the weather we have been experiencing - that would be wonderful.  More outside rides please!


Jeni said...

"Winter" should be arriving this weekend in the form of more rain and 40's in Cincy. Hopefully you guys don't get the snow.

Glad you got to ride outside =)

DancingHorses said...

Our groundhog up here aparently was half and half... only saw half his shadow... so i dont know what that means...? 3 weeks winter?

Mona Sterling said...

I have a saddle fitter coming out on Monday and I just hope that I notice the difference with a new saddle! My pocketbook hopes I don't have to go custom, but there's also a big part of me that is hoping I have an excuse to go custom. :) Glad to hear your new saddle is working out so well!

SprinklerBandit said...

The new saddle sounds lovely! Glad it's working out for you. I'd keep an eye on the wither soreness, just to be sure.

Lucky you, riding outside. We can in the afternoon, but of course I ride in the morning...

achieve1dream said...

Sounds great! I'm glad she was able to custom fit it and that you both love it. :D Congrats on the outdoors ride. I am loving the weather too. Good luck selling your old saddle!