Robbye continues to amaze me with her consistency. Every day she’s better, and she hasn’t made any apparent steps backwards in the past month. Incredible.
Wednesday there was standing water in the outdoor, so we worked in the indoor. Louie got to wear the pleasure driving harness for the first time! He thought he was going to die, of course. He’s just so so sensitive. But Kathy ground drove him around the arena, and they seemed to make progress. I’m hoping that one of these days Louie has a lightbulb moment and decides he can trust Kathy. That would make her life so much easier.
Robbye and I worked on downward transitions – especially from a sitting trot to a walk – and I feel that they’re already getting a lot better. I’ve been trying to exaggerate my seat cues and minimize my rein cues for the downward transitions. I’ve found that she’s actually very sensitive to my seat and leg cues. Who-lda thought.
Next, we tried adding a little “height” to our jumping, since we hadn’t done much more than poles and very small x-rails. She was great, of course. She really has started putting a lot of effort into picking up her feet, even as we transition from trot poles to actual jumps.
We finished the night with a very small (18″?) vertical. She tried, but she was so mentally pooped at this point that she didn’t do extremely well. Ah well, at this point, in my opinion, the effort counts.
Yesterday, Thursday, I set up an elaborate poles course out in the outdoor. It was really fun to just make up a course and then have her do it – our control is amazing. I also think that she was really enjoying herself.
For some reason, though, she kept hitting the cavaletti in the shorter bounce. Eventually she actually broke both of them. I’m not sure why she had so much trouble with them – maybe they were set too short? Maybe she couldn’t see them? I don’t know. We stopped jumping when she landed right on one of them and completely split it in half.
We ended with some really nice canter – collected, controlled, poll down – into a beautiful simple change – her first, as far as I can remember! It was from her bad way to her good way, and it took her about four trot strides, but I’m still very pleased.