Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

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StraightForward
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Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby StraightForward » Thu Mar 01, 2018 4:16 am

We are on the downhill slide out of winter, and with the days lengthening and the weather warming (sort of) it's time for some new goals!

My exciting change this 2-month span will be moving to a new barn that has an indoor arena with mirrors!

I just gave notice at my current barn today, but my spot at the new place is open, so I'm very tempted to just pay double board for a bit so I can move early. If the long-range forecast doesn't let up, I just might.

My SoloShot is arriving tomorrow too, so between that and the mirrors, I'm going to be seeing a lot more of my riding than I probably want to. :lol:

There is a local show in May that I'd like to enter at Training Level, so the goal the next two months will be confirming the canter and general steadiness in the bridle and introducing some stretchy trot. Also, bumping work level up from 3 rides a week to 4. Ridden work on consecutive days is still a little hard for Princess, but I'm hoping by April she'll be able to do 2 on, 1 off with regularity.

For myself, stretching, core work and running to improve my seat and aerobic capacity. It would be OK if I shed a couple pounds in the process as well.

For Pickle - I'm hoping to carve out a few days in April to go out and work with her several days in a row and possibly get on if her trainer thinks the time is right.
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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby Moutaineer » Thu Mar 01, 2018 5:01 am

The next two months are all about ME.

Laddie's good. It's me that needs the work.

My position, my core, my hands--I'm on a crusade to break my bad habits and really refine my riding skills.

My trainer is completely on board with this and is thrilled to get down to the finer details and minutely dissect what's going on, so I think it's going to be interesting and productive.

Yeah, and losing a couple of winter pounds wouldn't go amiss either in my quest for effortless elegance...

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby mari » Thu Mar 01, 2018 5:13 am

If I can just manage to wrangle my work schedule to ride more than twice a week, that would be amaaaaaazing :(
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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby exvet » Thu Mar 01, 2018 5:22 am

Well I started lessons last Saturday. This was my first one in over a year and Junior's first one ever; so, I guess our goal is to continue with them. I have one scheduled for this Saturday. We're simply establishing the basics so beyond expanding our knowledge each time we don't have much more on the agenda. I also plan to continue to put at least 6 miles a week in trail work on both horses, more if possible. For me I have to get back into shape so I can hike rim to rim again this spring. We'll see if I can get it all accomplished.

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby Dresseur » Thu Mar 01, 2018 2:33 pm

My goals are pretty simple again. Keep doing the basics exceptionally well on Miro - keep focusing on simple transitions, proper responses to seat and leg. Throughout the course of the next 2 months, I'm also thinking that we will continue on with the lateral work - definitely shoulder in and haunches in. Maybe we'll start playing with renver again by the end of April.

It's very challenging to ride a horse as wiggly as he is. He stretches so easily through the outside of his body that you don't realize that he's actually collapsed to the inside until you try to do a circle and realize that he keeps fading to the wall during the second half of it. So, I've been doing short sides as circles, but ending on quarterline, and then leg yielding away from the wall to check that he's honest on the outside. A tiny, tiny bit of inside leg goes a very, very long way with him - so I have to be careful that if he's a bit stiff on the inside rein, I can't really address it with more inside leg to bend him, because he's already bent more than enough. Concentrating on these aspects have really changed the work for him and he's feeling great. We're still having a rough time getting him back into a normal turnout schedule because of the obscene amounts of rain. So... hope for a dry March/April for me.

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby DJR » Thu Mar 01, 2018 2:42 pm

My goals this month are to restart Jet & Panache, help my daughter restart her lg pony, Sawyer, and get myself back into riding shape. In April, I'll get Jet's Third/Fourth Level training into a higher gear once he has a fitness base on him, and Pan will be working on his Second Level stuff with the hopes of debuting him at Second Level later in the year.

I've already restarted my morning walking program. The left SI injury that I acquired last May is finally fairly settled, thankfully. The left ring finger fracture has left me with a fairly stiff finger that I cannot fully flex, but I'm working on it. It's stable enough that I can ride without any pain finally as of December.

I also have a couple of other horses to manage this year:
Finn: rising 4 yr old Shire/Hano - he was backed late last year but didn't make as much progress as I'd hoped (only walking off the lunge, not trotting yet). He's a bit reactive so he's going for harness/hitch training tomorrow for two months where he'll get road work and LOTS of exposure with a trainer who has a stellar reputation doing this sort of thing. After that, he's booked for 2 more months of under-saddle training which I think will help him a lot after the harness training.

Dante: my 11 yr old Percheron, is BACK as of tomorrow. He was sold in 2016, but the owner became pregnant again and realized she didn't have time to keep him with her other two horses so offered a buy-back to me. I hadn't planned on having another horse now, but I'm happy to have him back and will get him going again with a few towards First Level, perhaps Second Level (fitness permitting) later in the year. He can also be my daughter's 2nd mount as he is very trustworthy. I'm very gratified that she honored the buy-back clause in our purchase agreement, and that I'll be the one ensuring he has a soft landing in future (or he'll stay with me).

I'm so happy to be getting back in the saddle. I have to clip the winter fuzzies off Jet & Pan in the next couple of days, then I anticipate riding them this weekend. Yay!
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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby PaulaO » Thu Mar 01, 2018 3:13 pm

Haven't set a goal. My instructor is gone for the month of March so I feel a bit lost. I guess my goal is to create my own lesson plan with what I already know.

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby Dresseur » Thu Mar 01, 2018 4:04 pm

OH! I should also say, I'm looking for a project horse! I vetted one and it failed :( so the hunt continues.

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby Sue B » Thu Mar 01, 2018 4:19 pm

I got a text yesterday morning asking what times would work for me in the upcoming Cindy Canace clinic (Mar 10). It took me all day to reply because I kept thinking I should cancel, but I decided to go for it afterall. Rudy stays relatively fit galloping in my hilly pasture and I have been exercising a little bit anyways, so we should be ok I guess. Wish me luck.

Rudy Goals: 1) Ride 3x's a week at least
2) Confirm w/c/w in prep for fc
3) Get with coach and do fc's
4) Pop over a few low jumps because my friend wants me to ride him in an event derby!

Tio Goals: 1) Work on canter
2) Find a saddle that fits him better
3) Ride out in the hay field more and even canter him out there
4) Build some more jumps for him
5) Enter him in an event derby

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby Moutaineer » Thu Mar 01, 2018 6:35 pm

I've ridden under Cindy Canace as a judge and found her feedback to be very valuable, so I will be interested to hear how the clinic goes, SueB!

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby Chisamba » Thu Mar 01, 2018 8:45 pm

The nastiest comment i ever heard at a show was directed toward Cindy C and "its Me H" After the show the scribe walked up and said to her, thank you so much for riding to day , i wondered what moves that should earn 4's looked like in Grand Prix. the sad thing about it is that the scribe was a learning judge and i think its possible the comment was meant honestly.

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby Chisamba » Thu Mar 01, 2018 8:50 pm

Okay new months ahead. I need to improve my riding fitness again to where riding five to six horses a day is not as tiring as it has been this past week.

I really want to ride Deneb five times a week. I would like to have the courage to show her this year, in May, so that means i have to both gain confidence, and get her more test ready.

I have been practicing second level on Kimba, this has made first level much more rideable, so I do think that riding her in another first level test first show of the season, planning to step up to second in the fall.

I really would like to get a couple of my riders show ready, and i mean so well ready that i boast, yeah those are my riders :)

my weight loss stalled in Jan, Feb so i would like to improve my fitness and lose weight again.

So, basically, be riding fit for six horses a day
Deneb show ready
Kimba, super at first and solid at second
fit and less fat.

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby demi » Fri Mar 02, 2018 2:28 pm

I am happy with the improvement in my fitness level so I plan to keep up my routine. I think I will continue to get more fit but I am still am carrying around 15-20 extra pounds. If I could lose it, I would have more energy. It's like carrying around a small dog ALL the time. I think getting rid of that weight would give me enough spring in my step to eventually work Emma 4-5 days a week in addition to Rocky.

My goals for this time are to continue the same goals I had with Rocky last time plus:

1.) loose 8 lbs
2.) ride Emma 3 times a week
3.) video my rides at least every two weeks.


This is going to be a great two months!

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby kande50 » Fri Mar 02, 2018 2:46 pm

demi wrote:I think I will continue to get more fit but I am still am carrying around 15-20 extra pounds. If I could lose it, I would have more energy. It's like carrying around a small dog ALL the time.


Ah, but because you're carrying the weight all the time you may actually be stronger, and have as much or more energy than you would if you lost it?

The reason I say that is because my energy has gradually declined (probably for 50 years now, but especially so in the last 5 years) and I don't carry any extra weight. In fact, I often wonder if maybe I should gain some to see if that might help my energy levels?

Trouble is, there's no sense gaining weight unless it's muscle, so the first thing I need to do is increase my activity level, which I started to do in January. I wish I could say that it's working, but I haven't noticed any increase in energy in spite of the nice stretch of spring-like weather last week.

I guess that meme I see on facebook that says that getting old is all about "goggling stuff on the internet and being tired all the time" isn't so far off. :-)

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby Sue B » Fri Mar 02, 2018 4:27 pm

The nastiest comment i ever heard at a show was directed toward Cindy C and "its Me H" After the show the scribe walked up and said to her, thank you so much for riding to day , i wondered what moves that should earn 4's looked like in Grand Prix. the sad thing about it is that the scribe was a learning judge and i think its possible the comment was meant honestly.


Ouch! That's kinda harsh...talk about "foot in mouth" disease!

Well, it is now snowing vigorously sideways at the rate of a couple inches an hour and snow is predicted through the weekend. Figures. :lol:
I think I will still try to get out and ride this afternoon though, even if it is just down the road. Pretty sure my arena will be drifted in by noon but hopefully the gate to get out of the pasture will still be clear enough.

Chisamba, when you show Deneb, remember to ride her "as if." The thing that helped me the most with my horse, Lad, who melted down at shows, was to ride as if he was the well-trained horse he was at home. It helped to keep me from riding defensively in the test and thus gave Lad a modicum of confidence that all was well and allowed him to at least get through the test. At his first major show, he suddenly realized there was a jumbo-tron at the far end of the arena (a huge indoor event center) and completely lost his mind. The judge very kindly gave us an extra minute to get back to A so we could start our test. I think we ended up with a 43%, but we did complete the test (1st lvl 3), a major triumph in my book. The next year we scored in the 60's at the same venue (same test) and I got all teary-eyed at the end because he trusted me so much that he listened despite his terror. Had he not been so stressed by shows, btw, he would have easily scored in the mid-70's.

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby Ponichiwa » Fri Mar 02, 2018 4:32 pm

Kiwi and I are ready to rock this challenge. Here's what our March/April goals look like:
- Build cadence in the trot work; ensure that it is consistent within and between movements (i.e.: do not drop Kiwi on her face within or transitioning into/out of half pass, for example)
- School half-steps and extensions concurrently, 1x/week, to build scope on both ends of the collection spectrum
- Flying changes: for all working rides (i.e. not walk/trail ride days), toss in at least 1 change each direction. Ensure that the canter is relaxed and pliable before asking for the change.
- Canter: Reintroduce pirouette work. 3x/month, school towards pirouette in canter. Probably should couple this with some extensions in the canter as well.
- Personal fitness: 4x/work week, work out before work. Hoping that by the end of this challenge, I can actually face the thought of stepping on the scale.

If all the stars align and I'm feeling good about our prospects, we may enter a schooling show at 3rd towards the end of March. I'm still waffling on that one.

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby piedmontfields » Fri Mar 02, 2018 4:58 pm

-Continue to improve fitness of me and horse (horse is actually pretty good! She knocked out 40 minutes of hill work in 80 degree F weather last week. I just started doing regular spin cycle workouts at home and it is helping with improving my cardio fitness and some weight loss).

-Get the canter depart aid extra super duper reliable and quick.

-Study flying change guidance and do good practice when ready.

-I had signed up for a Jeremy Steinberg clinic in early April, but it looks like the clinic will be postponed to a future date.

-Capture some photos/videos using a remote!!!

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby DJR » Sat Mar 03, 2018 6:32 pm

First ride today since Dec 8/17! I rode Jet and just put him through his paces, being careful to give him lots of stretch breaks. In our abbreviated canter work, his c-w-c transitions were much better than usual, and so I tried a FC each direction. This was the horse that NEVER changed behind 3 yrs ago, and then things started gelling a year ago. Today, 2/2 clean changes that were easy-peasy!! Yay!!

My daughter did really well on her lg pony, Sawyer. She can get very anxious and then choke up on the reins. Today, she looked like a dressage rider and her attitude & "go-get-um"-ness was wonderful & inspiring to see.

I was going to ride Panache, too, but a guy who answered a Kijiji ad didn't read my email to him and showed up 3 hrs early, so we had to rush back to the farm to meet him. Ugh! But that's ok, I'm sure my hips will not be happy after today's short ride so a more gradual re-start will be kinder to my body. LOL.

Here's a crappy picture taken in the arena mirrors (love that this place has mirrors!) of happy mom & daughter in the tack:
2018Mar03 FirstRideback.jpg
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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby demi » Sat Mar 03, 2018 10:42 pm

What a precious picture, DJR! Thanks for sharing the happiness!!

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby piedmontfields » Sun Mar 04, 2018 11:29 pm

I love the photo, DJR!~ Like demi, I appreciate the share of joy.

The Jeremy Steinberg clinic is on! I must keep up with my fitness and mare fitness/work. To be continued!!!

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby DJR » Mon Mar 05, 2018 4:27 am

We had our 2nd rides today, me on Jet and my daughter on her pony, Sawyer. I was surprised that I wasn't MORE stiff than I thought I'd be! I put Jet through his paces and was very pleased with his response. It's all there from last year, all that's lacking is fitness & strength. I'm really happy about that & excited for this coming show season if this keeps up.

I was so impressed with my daughter's go-get-'em attitude. She has had fear issues in the past due to her Welsh pony's antics (namely, bucking her off regularly, especially at the canter). But this year she wants to make progress and has been chomping at the bit, so to speak, to get back in the saddle and to be assertive about her riding rather than avoidant. So, today she cantered both ways. This is a huge difference from last year and then she would have puttered around doing this & that but avoiding anything "hard" (and cantering for her is still hard). When I asked her afterwards how it felt, she said she didn't feel even a whiff of being avoidant, and said that she forgot how much she loves cantering Sawyer as he is forward and has a lovely rocking-horse canter. Music to my ears!

Here she is working on riding a more accurate circle without throwing away her outside rein. They make an adorable pair!
2018Mar04 KaraSawyer.jpg
2018Mar04 KaraSawyer.jpg (63.77 KiB) Viewed 3226 times


She and I then went on a fun road hack. The road by the facility can be quite busy with fast traffic, but it has a wide shoulder with a soft area to ride on, and a flat grassy ditch in case we want to get further off the road. I love hacking with my daughter, and I love Sawyer's poof of white at the top of his tail! Here we are, accompanied by our shadows on this gorgeous, sunny day:
2018Mar04 RoadHack.jpg
2018Mar04 RoadHack.jpg (115.96 KiB) Viewed 3226 times


After we rode these two, I shook the cobwebs out from my 6 yr old, Panache. He tends to be uppity & anxious, so I lunged him first. He was quite concerned about all the mirrors in the arena so it took awhile to get a non-prancy walk, trot & canter out of him on the lunge line. I had the arena to myself so I lunged him up & down the arena and showed him the whole thing. Then I got on. He was bracey and anxious, but zero bad behavior. And, after riding for about 10 min, he finally relaxed enough to reach for the contact, track up, sigh, and lick/chew. I ended there because that was a huge win to get that far on the first ride after 3-1/2 months off!

Can't wait to ride again ... hopefully tomorrow!
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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby Flight » Mon Mar 05, 2018 6:07 am

So I rode my first Advanced tests yesterday. I was nervous that I'd forget the tests but I didn't. Got a 65% for the first one, and I was happy with it - Dingaling was nice and forward and for once I didn't have to keep pushing him like I usually do at comps. I spoke to the judge afterwards and he said that we just need more uphill and engagement in all our work, and more collection in the trot. I tried to do this for the second test but just hollowed him and all our comments were 'needs more over the back'. Not something I can fix on the same day!
So my goals is to work more on this, keep working on piri's. I've got another .5kg to lose to get to my goal weight.
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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby heddylamar » Mon Mar 05, 2018 5:47 pm

I've had a crazy few weeks, so I've not been riding nearly as much as a 4yo with an active mind needs.

After arguing for far too many rides over the request, Maia finally grasped the concept of yielding to the bit, stretching her topline AND taking a nice big active step. We're also nailing canter departs perfectly.

While arguing with Maia over stretching, yielding, and stepping out, I managed to fix a wandering inside left hand plus the weird lean I occasionally do that direction in order to "help" that inside hand :roll: Tracking left, I partially bridged the reins, keeping the length between hands taunt, while looking to the outside of the circle. Now I'm keeping the rein where it should be w/o the bridge, and only occasionally need to look outside the circle.

The ineffectual inside left leg has been solved by physical therapy (re-injured up my left hip climbing into the saddle the day before Thanksgiving). One legged squats with weight and lunges with sideways resistance will forevermore be in my repertoire.

March came in like a lion. Riding this weekend was a challenge. I cam home and told my husband it was kind of like trying to stay on top of a rocket-propelled kite. We are in the path of the NE wind storm, and were whizzing all over the place with the wind gusts. OTOH, if anyone throws a lawn chair at Maia during a show, she now knows that spooking is not the appropriate answer! :shock:

My goals:
1) Establish a solid canter
2) Introduce cross rails
3) Hack out (hahahaha — this one may be a long shot)

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby Chisamba » Tue Mar 06, 2018 11:01 am

I. Managed to ride six horses on Monday. I actually held up ok physically but I was strategic and did more sitting trot.

Deneb was a bit more of a wretch this week. Definitely hormonal related now that I recognize her actions as related to cycling, even though she is still on regumate.
I am returning to my normal warm up schedule. i consider my experiment interesting but not in keeping with the balance and disposition of my particular horses.

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby Chisamba » Wed Mar 07, 2018 10:46 pm

by the way yesterday it was fifty degrees and i was riding in shirtsleeves, today there is quite a blizzard. taking care of the barn was fine but getting home was quite perilous.

that is the road home. we saw a few cars spin out. i drive slow and dont let others pressure me into going faster.

Image

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby Flight » Thu Mar 08, 2018 6:18 am

wow what a pic Chisamba! Looks amazing, but not to have to drive in.

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby PaulaO » Thu Mar 08, 2018 3:34 pm

The last 3 rides Ariel has been offering stretches at the walk and trot. This is huge for her--she was so locked up. Tuesday night she offered the stretchy trot so I went with it, and remembered to keep her moving forward when taking the reins back up. She stayed stretchy and round. I have a migraine today so perhaps no riding tonight.

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby Moutaineer » Thu Mar 08, 2018 6:42 pm

I hate that kind of drive home, Chisamba! I hope you haven't been completely buried in the past couple of days. The weather reports sound dreadful out east.

We, on the other hand, are having a touch of spring. We will have at least one more major snowstorm I'm sure, but I'm going to enjoy a few bright, sunny 45 degree days with sparkling snow and blue sky while they last.

Chipping away here on position and straightness. Our trot work is really improving, particularly the lateral work--apparently after all these years, I've finally worked out what my body needs to be doing to get a true quality shoulder in/travers/half pass etc... rather than the sketchy half-assed things I've been doing up to now. I suspect every previous instructor has just assumed that I knew, whereas I've told current trainer not to assume I know anything and to be explicit in her instructions.

Our canter work has been improving greatly too, but he got a little above himself in my lesson on Tuesday and started bucking when asked to go forward and then basically tried to haul the reins out of my hands and my body out of the saddle at every opportunity--(spring, fit, feeling mighty fine,) so tonight we will work on quiet transitions and sitting... yes, I want forward, but no, this is not the starting gate for the Derby and you don't play the fool when I'm on board.

On a side note, it is a year today since he came up injured. While it's been a long haul and I still cross my fingers and pray every time I take him out of his stall, I think he's come back stronger than he was before. He's got a better top line and muscle development, he's (mostly) settled and seems happy and relaxed in his work and life in general.

We are nearly back training wise to where we were before--better at some things, but still not back to the flying changes yet as I'm a bit paranoid about what stresses that puts on the stifles. And after Tuesday, we need a bit more control and a bit less yee-haw before we do!

So, just continuing in my quest to learn to ride!

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby Chisamba » Thu Mar 08, 2018 10:33 pm

Mountaineer this is an actual selfie from today :)

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby demi » Fri Mar 09, 2018 12:42 am

:lol: . :lol:

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby Moutaineer » Fri Mar 09, 2018 6:00 am

Oh, dear, Chisamba.

Just think, another couple of months and we will be complaining about the heat...

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby Flight » Fri Mar 09, 2018 6:53 am

Still boiling hot here!! Getting a bit cooler at nights, but still up and over 30 degrees C some days. I am looking forward to winter (but my winter is nothing like yours )

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cb06
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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby cb06 » Fri Mar 09, 2018 1:46 pm

I'm looking forward to it not being cold, windy, frozen, muddy and generally unpleasant. We've just poked along here and there the last few months. I did take a lesson last month and I'm now reading the changes thread as that is what we need to work on more.
But, in the meantime, we decided to just have some fun. We did our first Obstacle play day and I'm happy to say he pretty much did it all. The bridges, the ball pit, the pool noodles (all kinds of pool noodles), the plastic carwash curtain, tire towers, big flags, tarps, etc....we even rode over the teeter-totter bridge ( :shock: ).


obstacle1.jpg
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obstacle2.jpg
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I didn't get many pics of us, but here is some of the stuff in the outdoor ring, more out in field behind, barrels with pool noodles hanging between trees, more in the indoor. ...and yes, it was cold and windy.
Obstacle4.jpg
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It was fun for both of us and a nice mental break. Now back to dressage programming.

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby heddylamar » Fri Mar 09, 2018 10:49 pm

That looks like fun cb06!

I put a bit of a kink in my riding plans for the near future: Image

Fortunately, it's the distal radius, not yet another finger. Unfortunately, it's my semi-dominant right hand, again. The ortho cast it in such a way I can continue riding and running (he knows me well).

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby Chisamba » Sat Mar 10, 2018 12:54 am

Oh no, Heddylamar, what happened? hope it heals with no issues

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby heddylamar » Sat Mar 10, 2018 1:08 am

Chisamba wrote:Oh no, Heddylamar, what happened? hope it heals with no issues


Ice skating. The ortho was positive, so I'm hoping it heals quickly! I'm too active to put up with any down time.

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby Moutaineer » Sat Mar 10, 2018 5:24 am

Ouchie! Heal fast Heddylamar!

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby Imperini » Sat Mar 10, 2018 4:42 pm

Pool noodles look fun cb06! Broken wrist not so much. I hope you heal well and quickly heddylamar.

All our snow and ice melted and I was able to ride outside for the past two weeks but my luck has run out as we are snowy again. Not nearly as snowy as Chisamba (yikes!) and it isn't icy now so outside is not completely out of the question.

My goals for the next little bit are to continue trying to get myself into better shape with a better diet and continued exercise. I did lose a bit already but it's just what I gained over the winter so I'm pretty sure it doesn't count.

I also want to keep more focus on myself and maintaining my position. It seems like I do for a while and then I go back to old habits and forget but I really need to get my body to make new habits which doesn't happen if I keep going back to the old ones.

For Pal I would like to keep things varied and introduce new exercises and/or patterns more frequently. It keeps her on her toes and it seems like even if one thing works for keeping her attention and getting her energy up it only works for a few rides and then she goes back to being dull so either I still haven't quite figured out the right thing or we just need new things all the time.

I'm sure my tight hips don't help with the forward either. I was squatting the other day to pick up something off the ground and I don't know for sure but I'm pretty sure something got stuck in my left hip and I could hardly walk for a couple of hours. I was trying all sorts of weird things to get it to un-stick and then finally I felt a snap and everything went back to mostly normal though it was a little irritated for the rest of the day. Hope this doesn't become a regular thing because I certainly wouldn't have been able to ride like that.

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby DJR » Sat Mar 10, 2018 5:06 pm

Oh no, Heddylamar - rapid healing vibes coming your way! I think I might have broken my toe this morning but that won't slow me down so much (I hope).

cb06, that looks super fun. I'd love to do more of that sort of thing with my horses. I've signed up for a trick horse clinic in mid-April with my horse and my daughter's pony, so that should be fun.

I now have 10 days off work so I'm planning to spend most days in the saddle (notwithstanding today's toe injury!).
formerly known as "Deanna" on UDBB -- and prior to that, as "DJD".

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby Moutaineer » Sat Mar 10, 2018 9:49 pm

DJR, you and your daughter sure hit the lotto when you found each other!

Yipee. the clocks change tonight!!!!

Heading out now for a few hours of quality barn time :) Need to do some serious shedding and trimming on the giant hairy one...

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby DJR » Sat Mar 10, 2018 10:48 pm

Yes, Mountaineer, we really did. I'm richly blessed.

Today she and I had super rides on our respective mounts (Jet & Sawyer). She's overcoming her fear of cantering and made great strides towards that today. I'm proud of the thoughtful rider she is becoming.

Then I went to clip Panache who got very sweaty the last time I rode him. He is *just* starting to shed, but is still pretty wooly. I body clipped him two years ago and it went fine. Not today!!! Holy crow, what a bozo he was. Very, very reactive. I got a patch done on his near shoulder but had to quit because he was getting himself in a huge tizzy. So we went into the arena and I worked him from the ground to relearn how to control his own environment (i.e., being rewarded for displaying calming behavior, not ramped up behavior). I played with plastic, made weird noises by flinging the lunge whip against the rafters, the lexan windows high up, and the garage door on one end. He did very well. Then back to the aisle and worked in the same manner with the clippers. He made progress including holding the clippers against his skin while they were on, and just doing a tiny patch here and there and stopping as soon as he showed calming behavior.

Then I switched to his other side. He was good, then resorted to dominant behavior including kicking & barging. That led to a "mind your manners" lesson in personal space, yielding from pressure, and then back with the clippers until he stood, licked & chewed while the clippers buzzed his off shoulder a bit. After he responded well to that twice, I called it quits.

I don't know when he got so bloody reactive. I saw bits of it towards the end of last year. I've neglected ground work with him for the last year or so because I got complacent and figured he knew it. He clearly needs more so that will be the focus the next few weeks.

And tomorrow I'm going to the barn armed with Dormosedan. Better living (and clipping) through chemicals!! LOL
formerly known as "Deanna" on UDBB -- and prior to that, as "DJD".

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby mari » Mon Mar 12, 2018 8:19 am

We are working on submission. I had the kind of lesson yesterday that made me consider rollkur and draw reins as very reasonable training methodologies.

What are your thoughts on submission? For me it means an active and supple horse with all of his attention on me. I need access to the front end and the back end in equal measure, all 4 corners must be mine. Odin is not argumentative about training, even if it's difficult or new or I get it a bit wrong. He's great that way. He's also not spooky. But OMW he looks at everything. Interesting cars. Grooms turning other horses out. Grooms filling water buckets. People chatting. Cats. Rabbits. My instructor. Only about half his attention is on me, and it is sooooooo telling now that we are solidly 2nd level. Lack of suppleness in transitions, reactions that are delayed a stride, inattentive halts, the list goes on.

So now we are in bootcamp. It's a mental focus and discipline thing for me, and it's tough for Odin, because now there is suddenly zero tolerance. But I had another lesson today, and it was already so much better.
The aim of argument or of discussion should not be victory, but progress. ~ Joseph Joubert

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby cb06 » Mon Mar 12, 2018 12:40 pm

Thanks guys! The obstacles were super fun. It was a great 'problem solving' day for him and he likes that mental stimulation. It was funny when we went to see the teeter-totter bridge (its in the middle, back side of the ring in the last pic). We had been over several regular bridges fine and went to watch a few people go over the teeter-totter. He watched the first 2 go over intently, then he turned and looked at me slightly alarmed, and I swear he was trying to tell me "Mom, that thing is BROKEN!". :lol: But he did it with a little reassurance and patience.

DJR, You are making such good progress with your horses, I really enjoy reading your updates and your daughter riding is adorable.
Heddy, sorry about the hand, :(.
Mari, I can relate. I don't really like the word 'submission' (I blame this on my saddleseat background, where a submissive horse was not desirable). I prefer obedience and focus. Mine can be really looky especially out the windows/doors of the indoor, I have a few 'go-to's' to promote the focus. shoulder-fore, shoulder-in, leg yield, squares, transitions, just keeping him into the outside rein...the hardest thing for me is the focus to be proactive and riding every stride, transitions and keeping his focus on me. Its tough.

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby demi » Mon Mar 12, 2018 1:50 pm

Nice updates, everyone. Well, except Heddylamar...get well soon! Flight, Ding looks so good in the latest picture!

The whole submission thing is so important to understand. I am in the camp where a lot of the problem is my own focus and discipline, and as cb06 puts it, “riding every stride, transitions and keeping (the horse’s) focus on me.”. The good news is that I am getting there, and the closer I get, the easier it is becoming.

Trailer loading Rocky is largely a submission issue. There is more involved than just submission, of course, but if I am going to trailer out for lessons, she has to submit to getting in the trailer. I have another lesson today, so I practiced loaded her last night. She momentarily said “I don’t think so” which is a huge improvement because she used to say flat out “NO!!” All I had to do was “tell her” by my attitude that she had to get in complied. Once in, she half heartedly tried to back out and all I had to do was say her name in a firm tone and she stood perfectly still so I could close the divider and then tie her. And after I tied her she relaxed and started munching hay which is a great improvement!

I am looking forward to my lesson. Well, Rocky’s lesson really. The trainer will be riding her. It’s really the best thing for both of us at this time. When she starts to show obvious improvement with the trainer, I will occasionally ride her myself for some of the lessons. I sometimes think about putting her in training but the trainer can’t currently take another horse anyway.

Gotta go do my “Jane Fonda” now before my lesson...

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby Sue B » Mon Mar 12, 2018 3:39 pm

Heddy, so sorry about your arm--jingles for rapid healing.

DJR, I bought the Rambo Dry Rug for Rudy because I don't like to clip him when he's shedding. I tried it out for the first time at the clinic this weekend and I can report that it works extremely well. The microfibers really do soak up the sweat and leave you with an almost dry horse within 30 minutes; it's amazing and worth every penny.

Cb06, looks like you had a blast doing the obstacles. Talk about a fun day!

So, despite this stupid cold/cough/chest congestion, I went to the Cindy Canace clinic this weekend and had a good (if frustrating) time. My riding pretty well sucked because I'm weak from being sick and my lungs were too congested to get enough air; so I had to stop a few times and catch my breath before passing out. Rudy was so excited to finally go somewhere that he was a bit reactive and certainly tense, and so we only worked on getting 3 nice gaits the first day and a little lateral work the second day. I look forward to her coming back this summer and seeing Rudy when he's not so wound up. She could see, however, what a great mind he has and how hard he tries to do what's asked of him even when his brain is running a gazillion miles an hour. Twice on Saturday he was startled by something and ducked out from under me (once at the trot, once at the canter), but both times he immediately stopped and waited while I regained my seat and returned to the work at hand. :P

Unfortunately, I did not have the strength or energy to ride Tio last week or on the weekend so there's nothing to report on him.

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby Ponichiwa » Mon Mar 12, 2018 5:55 pm

So sorry about your arm, Heddy! Ouch.

Chisamba and DJR and anyone else still braving the cold: hang in there. But the next bit might be out-of-sync with your experience.

Mid-March Kiwi update: Things are going well. There have been some springtime heat shenanigans that resulted in my pony taking an unauthorized jaunt around the property, but as soon as she's been under saddle she's been a little workhorse. The changes are, dare I say, controllable. We've been schooling the changes for probably 3 years now, but they're finally to the point where I can feel each hind leg in each rein in the canter and my half-halts are going all the way through. As a result, the changes are clean and uphill and straight a good 85% of the time and only exuberant/sideways/ridiculous 15% of the time.

Spring sprang this weekend at my house. Here's a shot of my two dogs posing with one of my yard bluebonnets:

Image

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby Hot4Spots » Mon Mar 12, 2018 7:59 pm

Well, you guys are going to tell me to just "stop it!" with my tales of woe. ;)

Markey-Mark and I have been locked into our walk/walk/walk routine, contemplating when (2 months, 3 months from Feb. 8?) I'll call in the vet for a checkup. Also thinking that when the weather gets a bit better, I'll give him a little more ACE than normal (I give him about 1cc on a busy weekend to walk around the property, otherwise nothing), and take him out on the more level trails.

So Friday, I head out to the barn after work to ride. He has to step down from his stall to the grooming area which is right in front of it, and he's hesitant to leave the stall, but, hey, there's food in there, I understand. But he came out and my back was to him so I wasn't paying attention to HOW he stepped out,. He stands there in the crossties and I groom and saddle, he takes his peppermint reward after bridling, and when when I go to lead him up to the arena, HE IS THREE-LEGGED LAME (right fore). Say what.....?????

I turned him right around, very slowly, and back into the cross-ties. Strip him down the felt all up and down his leg. Nothing. Have BOs (who are very experienced horse people) look and they can't find anything either until finally husband pokes outer edge of his heel bulb and he flinches very slightly. The general consensus is "abscess." Yeah, probably, but still very scary - three-legged lame. I put him away and gave him 2gr. bute in his feed. Saturday AM he's almost 100% at the walk. Local vet affiliated with big clinic doesn't do weekends except for occasional emergencies, so I call clinic in the Central Valley. Talked to vet there and he basically said that if there was that much improvement 15 hours after bute, that he would say it is "probably" an abscess. He recommended no more bute (as a diagnostic) and go ahead and poultice, call for emergency visit if he gets worse, and otherwise my local vet will be at the barn Thursday for another boarder and I can piggyback on that call. GAH. I spent a hour or so Saturday running around buying diapers, duct tape, sugar, betadine (Bad horse mommy was out of EVERYTHING of that nature), also feeling guilty because I had to squeeze in a hair appointment before returning to the barn. Poultice him up and let him graze for about 20-30 mins. Sunday, he's about the same as Saturday - basically okay at the walk. So, unless he take a turn for the worse, I guess I keep poulticing and wait until Thursday.

I REALLY don't need this on top of everything else. Sigh. Okay, I've vented my anxiety. Thanks for listening.

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby DJR » Mon Mar 12, 2018 8:23 pm

Hot4Spots, well crapola. I hope it's just an abscess and goes away as quickly as it came!

With the help of chemical bliss, I clipped Panache today. I gave him a dose (IV) of Dormosedan that was enough to have made Jet completely drunk with sedation. Pan was still striking every time I touched his shoulder with the clippers! I gave him more and finally he was better, although I had to be careful around his elbows & shoulders as he was the most reactive there (totally FINE with his flanks, under his belly, and all around his butt, though!). Anyway, he's now ready to get seriously back into work which will start tomorrow.

Here he is sleeping off the joy-juice:
2018Mar11 PanacheClippedSedated.jpg
2018Mar11 PanacheClippedSedated.jpg (69.18 KiB) Viewed 2744 times


Meanwhile, this was from this morning (non-horse related, although an argument could be made that Ocean is close enough to a horse!). This is my daughter helping Ocean during our morning walk:
2018Mar11 OceanKara.jpg
2018Mar11 OceanKara.jpg (132.05 KiB) Viewed 2744 times


Ocean is now 10-1/2 yrs old and has degenerative myelopathy since last year. Her hind end is getting progressively weaker. She hasn't been able to come on walks most of the winter because of either deep snow or ice, but today and yesterday were perfect. We went for our normal 45-min walk with the two border collies & the Papillon, then went for a short spin around the pasture with her. Even that was a bit more than she could handle, so Kara took off her sweater, rolled it up, and used it as a sling to help her. Ocean had a blast and still loves life HUGELY so her time isn't in the foreseeable future, but it's still sad to see this happening to her. For those who remember, this was the same dog a few years ago that reached Advanced level classes in agility despite her size and despite being congenitally deaf!
formerly known as "Deanna" on UDBB -- and prior to that, as "DJD".

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby Hot4Spots » Mon Mar 12, 2018 8:34 pm

DJR - That's great re Ocean, for what appears to be a (mostly or all?) Great Dane). I had friends who used to raise them and changed to Shelties because of the age thing with Danes. What a beautiful dog. Here's hoping she continues to enjoy life for years to come as she so obviously does in that picture.

Re clipping: LOL The amount of ACE it would take to body clip Markey-Mark would probably knock him off his feet. Fortunately, his winter coat is minimal. You'd only know it's a winter coat when you compared it to his summer coat, when he becomes nearly transparent and you can see his mottled pink/grey skin (Appaloosa) through it.

My previous three Appies, Chico, Blazey and Erik were either indifferent to being clipped (Chico and Blazey) or LOVED it (Erik). Erik viewed the clipper as his own personal massage/vibrator.

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Re: Get some spring in your step - March/April Goals & Progress

Postby Moutaineer » Mon Mar 12, 2018 9:08 pm

Oh, no, HFS! I hope it is a simple abscess that resolves quickly and easily. Poor guy, those things hurt!


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