|Warming up in trot - look at his little ears!!|
On Sunday I had a really "just OK" ride on Vallu. It wasn't the best ride ever and a few months ago I would have been really bummed out about it, but now I'm actually really proud of what we achieved that day. Vallu came out so hot that the moment I picked up my reins he was off - which is normally nice - but this time I had no breaks and no steering and he was just running away with me! 🏇💨 But instead of getting frustrated or scared, I actually made him work with me practising either riding down the centre line or the ¾ line in his 'small' trot so that he actually had to work over his back and relax through his neck. To tell the truth he was listening to my seat really well whilst simultaneously blocking my hand/rein aids, so I figured out I was better off working on straightness in collected trot and canter rather than doing transitions because doing transitions when he's in this kind of mood just seems to always end up in a very very hot and unrideable Vallu.
What also made me really pleased with this totally not fantastic ride was that Vallu let me ride him properly. Even though he was super hot and decided that the corner near the door was the new corner of doom which resulted in a spook every time we went past, his spooks only took about two strides for me to get him to stop it and then carry on with what work we were doing. I know this sounds SO simple and easy, but compared to the 40m buggering off with me with a bronco bucks thrown in that we had a few months ago, this is a massive step in the right direction for us. I wouldn't mind going to a competition now that I know that even if he was spooky I could actually ride him through a test, instead of him blocking me out and taking off. Even just a month ago I was considering not competing him this season because I wasn't sure if he would let me ride him anywhere that he thinks is spooky, but after this ride I feel confident that he trusts me enough to let me tell him where to go! 💙
|Blurry but finally a photo of us mid change and it doesn't look too bad!|