Sometimes I look back and think we haven't achieved anything. This month has been an unsuccessful month. For the first 10 days I wasn't hacking still as I did not want to leave Chesney on his own, we had a few really windy days when I don't like to ride too. Then Basil has a few days off for a possible lameness and then some for his breathing!
However, May has seen us improving our transitions and our leg yield so I must focus on the positives.
My May Aims for Basil were:
- Calmness, rhythm and suppleness in all paces - ongoing.
- Consistency of bend on left rein, this is definitely our BIG problem - ongoing.
- Halt transitions from trot - oh yeh! so pleased.
- Trot to walk to trot exercise - definite improvement.
- Canter to trot transitions, continue to improve the time taken - definitely improved.
- Jumping, 1 stride doubles, in a good sensible canter rhythm - not achieved.
- Turn on the forehand - improve movement away from left leg - still better on one rein.
- Introduce half circles in trot - struggling with balance for these, more practise.
- Learn a dressage test (prelim 1) and practice at home - done some movements.
- Lunge in bridle as I would like to introduce side reins soon (hang head in shame).
This is what May looked like:
4th - jumped. Great session today, warmed up and then did some jumping. I thought I would change our fence to a cross pole today - with the lowest part about the same height as we have been jumping straight. Only Basil thought that it was necessary to jump as high as the highest part! Better by the end of the session but still jumping bigger than he needed to.
7th - lunged. Fairly standard session today. Walk, trot and canter on each rein. Basil was very good.
8th - schooling on the flat. Today we worked on our upwards transitions, so halt to walk, walk to trot, trot to canter and our downwards transitions. Really pleased by the end of the session as our response times had really reduced! As part of the Trot - Walk - Trot improvement exercise we are now managing to trot for two school letters (or where they would be) and then walk for 2 letters before trotting again. When we had this we did the same in Trot - Canter - Trot - Canter .... This was a totally new thing for Basil as we usually canter for longer periods but he quickly got the idea and it really helped bring his hocks underneath him!
11th - schooling on flat. Today we worked on leg yield in walk and trot both towards and away from the track. So pleased with Basil as he is really remembering the aids now from one session to the next. Floss arrived!
13th - lunged. Pleased that Basil was happy to come in from the field without Floss as he has been following her around. Simple session today as a reward.
15th - schooled. Transitions again today Walk - Trot - Walk and we progressed to Trot - Halt - Trot transitions today. So pleased, these need work but as a first session I was pleased.
17th - hack. First hack since we lost Fidget so only a short one to ensure Chesney was OK with Floss.
18th - hack. Longer hack today, Basil again was very good.
19th - lunge. Session cut short as I decided Basil was not quite 100% sound on his off fore. - Decided to rest him for a few days.
28th - hack. Basil seems sound, new shoes this morning. However, not sure he is breathing quite right. This time last year he had a short ROA episode and had Ventipulmin. We think it was a result of a pollen allergy - which he had never had before.
29th - vet to Basil for his breathing. Steriod injection and Ventipulmin - so a few days off to recover!
My June Aims for Basil are:
1. Calmness, rhythm and suppleness in all paces.
2. Consistency of bend on left rein.
3. Halt transitions from trot, continue to improve.
4. Canter to trot transitions - still need improving.
5. Jumping, 1 stride doubles, in a good sensible canter rhythm.
6. Turn on the forehand - improve movement away from left leg.
7. Leg yield away from and towards track in one fluid motion.
8. Improve our half circles in trot.
9. Learn a dressage test (prelim 1) and practice at home.
10. Lunge in bridle as I would like to introduce side reins soon. Ahhh.
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Until next time!