Saturday, May 29, 2010

Seeing Results

It was a gorgeous Friday evening with temps is the low 70's and a very slight breeze. I had to take advantage and go ride my guys.

Toby was awesome. After more than a year of working him in dressage, he now flexes and becomes round when I ask and he's much better about holding that frame while we make our way around the arena. I can stretch him down and collect him up. It's a blast to ride him! His most difficult gait has been the canter. He seems to struggle with his long back and getting his hind end underneath him. It used to feel like he was about to buck when he tried. He doesn't do that anymore! He is much more balanced, more so to the left than to the right, and he can get his hind end underneath him as long as I help him out on the front end. He keeps getting better and better at it and I don't need to hold him up as much as I used to. Progress! I think his ability to canter better has come as a result of all our trot work. He's simply more balanced. I just love riding him and feeling/seeing these results.

Then I hopped on Ollie. I'm not sure what happened to the Ollie I once knew but this new Ollie is as calm as a cucumber. No more getting startled at the littlest thing, much less bit chewing and head tossing (as if removing an imaginary fly), and overall a very calm, almost lethargic, demeanor!

I rode Ollie in the treeless saddle which he seems to not mind at all. I just wish it had more support for me and wasn't so big. He marched around and the minute I hinted at "whoa" he would stop. Unusual for him. It's got to be the feed...

I was having some struggles getting him to become round and holding it like he does for Betsy. I also noticed that he was dragging his back legs in the ground a little when he moved. He seemed to move fine otherwise so I have just made a mental note of it. Stiffness? Laziness? (Can't believe I just used that word when discussing Ollie!) After riding Ollie around, who was also good about standing at the mounting block, I cooled him out and let him have a pick of grass before putting him in his stall for the evening. He seemed so sleepy to me.

I'm anxious to take a riding lesson on Ollie now. I need an outside eye to watch what I'm doing so I can be sure I'm sending him the right message. But I'm thrilled that he's not such a busy body! Maybe now we can get his focus and we can progress again with his training. If only my new saddle would get here...


  1. Glad to hear that you had two great rides with your boys! Hope the saddle arrives soon...

  2. Congrats on the great rides! I love reading about other OTTBs and their "adventures" with their owners:) Great blog!