It has been a month since I came up with a list of Summer Riding Goals, so I feel that a check-in is in order. Checking off lists is one of the many things that makes me especially happy, so here we go!
- Finish up Rio’s vet care and get Amazing Vet’s ok to start riding.
Mostly completed. We did get the OK to start riding, and have been doing so for a couple of weeks now. We are still tending to the wound, and progress is mostly good. We actually got the ok to go without a wrap- but Rio’s leg swelled way up and the wound started to ooze, so back to wrapping it with a stable bandage for now. I’d like to slowly wean him off the wrap, maybe we try again in another week.
2. Focus on the basics while legging him back up- proper straightness, reaching forward into the bridle, promptness off the aids, consistency in the gaits.
Going really well! I have definitely been getting back to my dressage roots with Rio lately. When you do nothing but flat you are kind of forced to address any training shortcoming lol! Rio is stiffer to the right, and doesn’t like to step into the outside (left) rein contact. I have been been paying close attention to supporting him with my inside leg, especially through turns and circles, forcing myself to have a feel on the outside rein, and keeping a soft giving inside rein while maintaining a slight inside flexion. I have also been leg yielding to the left to continue to encourage him to accept the outside (left rein) and supple and activate the right hind. He hates it, so I try not to overdue it even though I always want to work on something until it’s perfect.
Rio’s step is HUGE, so I have been focusing on compacting it a bit, otherwise he can get all wonky and step all over himself. We have been doing a bit of lengthen/collect with in the same gait which definitely helps with this.
3. Once we start jumping, focus on the hard stuff, aka the exercises that show your weakness such as “circle of death” and similar grid type work.
Not jumping yet, hopefully soon
4. Inter-mix jump work with strength training flat work, working different paces within the same gait and strengthening the lateral movements.
Not jumping, but have been playing with lateral work. In an attempt to continue to supple and strengthen his back/butt I have started to introduce more lateral work, most recently travers/renvers, turn on the haunches, and half pass. Rio shows his immense displeasure but gaping his mouth and looking skyward occasionally. I get it though- that shit is hard! I patiently apply more leg, nudge a little, and wait for him to give and soften to the aids. He always gives in eventually, but this is definitely going to be a work in progress. He doesn’t usually resist like that- I think he is just truly confused at this point.
5. Not dying in the summer heat!
So far, so good
I caved and got one of those Equivisors from Riding Warehouse.
I actually really like it , it’s like an umbrella that follows you around everywhere. My hubby calls me “Anne of Green Gables” but he can stuff it because I like it. Between my equivisor and sunshirts I haven’t suffered heat stroke yet. Other then that, I have been riding in the evening around 7:30 pm, which definitelyyyyy helps and is way better then the heat of the day.
How are your summer riding goals going? Training hard or taking it easy?