Sunday, 24 January 2010
We're back in the game!
I rode Wolfie today for the first time in around 10 weeks. I've been doing a little ground work during the week with him, I lunged him last weekend in an effort to let him burn off any excess energy. He had a complete carry onto himself and after 10 minutes of him cantering around uncontrollaby and not showing any signs of slowing down or tiring, I just gave up. Wasn't doing either of us any good. I was a little apprehensive sitting on him today, he's never had such a long time off work, so I wasn't quite sure how he would react. It was a mixture of excitement and anticipation though as I have been desperate to ride him. I concentrated on my breathing and keeping my adrenalin levels low. Monty Roberts talks alot about this and it really does work, it makes sense really. He was a little tense when I got on, and the walking off as I was mounting raised it's ugly head again. I had been working hard at consistently making him stand when I mounted and waiting until he was asked to walk on. He has a habit off walking off at an alarming pace when I have one foot in the stirrup. However, hopefully it will just take a few reminder sessions, it was the first day back after the holidays after all. All in all he felt brilliant. He's lost the condition and muscle he did have, but he felt strong and responsive. We only walked for twenty minutes on a loose rein in the school. He had a few hairy moments and outbursts of speed, but nothing bad. He's had his new bit in several times, just standing in the stable for 15 minutes at a time to let him get used to it, so we will see what the next few weeks bring with the ridden work. I'm just going to take it easy, walking this week, increasing the time. I'll keep him in the school and then hopefully at the weekend I'll hack him out if he's being sensible. I'm a strong believer in that you only get out of horses what you put into them. I feel so enthusiastic, excited and optimistic about this year. I want to put the work in and I have so many plans and expectations for us. One big bug bearer I'm going to have to address is the road. If I want to be able to vary our hacking routes and introduce longer rides and faster fittening work, I have to get him along that 100 yards of road safely. On one hand I was disappointed that I have been unable to work Wolfie for such a long period of time and he's not as fit as I'd have liked him to be at this stage (he's completely unfit now), however I don't think it ever does any harm for any horse to have a break, especially a young horse. He's still very green, but the basics are installed in him. We certainly haven't taken any steps back after the time off, so we can only move forward and I can't wait.