August 23, 2008

Arena Time

Today we were all set to head down to Battle Hill and get some work into the horses in a nice flat open space, but it turns out that the paddocks at BH are currently closed. So loaded everyone back onto the truck and headed down to the arena...
Alfie was so much more confident than he has been previously. He's still extremely green and hard to keep straight or focused at this stage. But he's getting so much quicker at picking up basic signals, and his transitions aren't too awful really (even into canter)... downward transitions are still a bit shaky keeping the forward momentum - but he will get there. Just need that neck shape to come through a bit more and then he can start really working a bit harder:
Sarah's Ned is getting more supple and we're starting to understand each other a bit better. He's not longer setting his neck against me, and is quite happy to work through various bending and flexing exercises. His canter I'm finding to be very long, and may try some spurs on him just to shorten him up a bit. He does have lovely movement though! And of course he's a pretty man:
Kody was quite a wee star today - after a little tiny bit of flatwork (he was super about being in a different surrounding too.. a few lookies at the things going on - traffic/lawnmower/kids... and then he was pretty much listening to me). He doesn't have much fitness or muscle, but as there were some jumps set up, and he had a jumping saddle on I thought I'd try him over a few things and he was just a real dude about it all. We did a few grids and I'm not sure if he's seen a double before, but he worked things out pretty quickly. I think he will be a snappy wee jumper. Flat pics:
Poor Neo missed out as it was starting to rain and get dark (and I needed to get home and put rugs back on Lily and Pip who spent the day lounging naked in the sunshine).
Nick helped me put a new bridle rack into the truck, so now I have all my bridles hanging nice and tidy beside the saddles (instead of crammed into the chest bins where they were), so that is awesome. However it does remind me that I need to clean my bridles!
Tomorrow is an early start to head up to the Kapiti combined training day. We're really only up there for an outing, to let the horses see a dressage arena (Kody & Alfie won't have ever seen one I don't think), and warm up around other horses. I've entered some classes, but the only straight dressage available was bloody 2.4! So I don't know if I will actually ride in the class or not, we'll see how they're each going on the day... but I really do want them to be somewhere busy and just soak up the atmosphere (there will be jumping going on as well). Neo is entered in one of the combined classes, 80cm I think. He hasn't jumped in 4 months or so! Could be interesting!