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Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Ry and Zi's first ride

Yesterday I was able to duck out of work a bit early and head to the barn to watch Ryan ride Zion for the first time. Since I do not have time to ride two during the week, Ryan will be taking over Zion on Tuesdays and Thursday, then I will get lessons on Gram on Thursday evening and lessons on both on Sundays.

Ryan is a man of few words... it probably didn't help that he had just arrived home from a week of horse shopping in Europe the night before. Zion was a little wiggle worm to start. This is pretty standard for him. After about 5 minutes Zion was ready to learn. You could see him process things... Ryan would ask for a half halt, Zion would stop, then move off, then get faster, dive to the rein a bit, then finally a glimpse of a little front end wait for the back end and try to work together. His ears were to the sides ready for his next task. The motorcycle racer canter wasn't bad- so I of course told Ryan I fixed it before he got there :) I wish I had remembered my camera! They looks so nice... Ryan with his long legs and Zion with his. They are the Ry and Zi team. They had a few moments of fancy dressage.

At the end of the ride- about 25 minutes and Zion drenched, Ryan had finished the first ride. I asked what he thought- and didn't get much. He said he is green- which is true... he said he was weak, also true because he is green. His canter needs work. He has a nice trot and he is really willing to learn- a good mind. That was it. Gotta love him.

So, then I rode Gram. She was good. We are kind of at a turning point. We have been trying to work on the connection- riding more in a second level frame. We have been working on trot halt, and instead of her wanting to fall down on the forehand, to instead sit down behind. She now understands this, but she is becoming very heavy in my hands. I was talking to Paige last night, and she pointed out it is probably a balance thing; Gram trying to figure out how she is to balance her big body. A light bulb went off in my head... I think she is dead on, I am just not quite sure how to fix. This will be the first thing I bring up in my Ryan lesson on Thursday! I thought the transitions would help her to lighten up. But they are having the opposite effect. I am sure it is something simple and my next post will be all about the ah-ha moment that Ryan walks me through.

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