Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Tuesday's Round Two with Phillip

It seems I have gotten behind on this blog - I blame it entirely on last night's pool party!

Tuesday afternoon, Katchi and I had round two with Phillip - a group gymnastics lesson. As I was headed down the hill to the arena with the "mean little Australian man" Katchi was definitely skeptical! Phillip had us start just trotting over some single fences, and I could tell immediately that I had a new horse under me! Jimmy is always telling me to ride the horse I have today - not the horse from last week. I was almost making my self laugh, hearing Jimmy's voice saying "stop riding the horse from this morning!" It felt like my tool box went from the Fisher Price version to the DeWalt delux version! Pretty cool! Lucinda Green was talking to me at her clinic this spring about coiling Katchi's spring at the base of a jump, giving him the time to look but keeping the power to still jump properly. Jimmy also has been talking to me about keeping Katchi in a "box" so that he doesn't pull the reins out of my hands and expand to whatever length he wants. Jimmy and Lucinda - today, Katchi had his spring coiled and stayed in the box!!!

For the gymnastics lesson we worked on a line of 3 verticles, 2 strides each, with various placing poles throughout. The other line included a relatively short and wide oxer with 4 short strides to a short bounce (ridden both directions). Phillip wanted us to learn to let the jumps hold the horse, so we could compress them to the base of the jump but let the various jump questions and placing poles make the horses pause and think before navigating through. This included going through the lines on a long rein to literally prove to us that the jumps would hold the horses! All three horses (and riders!) really got a lot out of the exercises.

And then it was pool party time...

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