Monday, June 12, 2017

Turning a Corner

I feel like Cupid and I have both made a lot of progress - it's been almost 3 years of hard work but it's finally starting to come together!  For me, I'm making incremental improvements in my stiff elbows and hips, and starting to sit up straighter.  Cupid is starting to develop a frame, and seeking contact.

We not only are figuratively turning a corner, but also went over our first corner jump this week!  It was about 2' tall, and set on blue blocks.  My trainer told me to jump it on the narrow end, but made it a little easier for me by putting a wing on that side.  Cupid had been eying the blue blocks in the ring earlier, so I wanted to make sure I had him straight and keep my leg on.  He ended up jumping over a little bigger than I expected!  But I was pleased with both of us for doing it.
Our first corner jump

We did a course of about 6 jumps, including a little vertical, a one stride combo, a semi-skinny, and the corner.  The one stride was a touch long, but after the first time through (when we got the second element a little long) Cupid and I figured out how to navigate it more smoothly.  My trainer said I'm doing a much better job getting to the jumps straight.  Now I just have to get more confident with doing it all at a canter!

On Friday we tried on a few Stubben dressage saddles.  The saddle fitter also looked at my jump saddle, and said it still fits Cupid well but recommended I go back to the wool half pad instead of my thinline.  I'm having a hard time picking a dressage saddle because I pretty much like them all!  I was hoping that one would really stand out above the rest, but so far that hasn't happened.  Cupid was very patient with all the saddle changes, and letting me test all the saddles even after he worked pretty hard in our lesson.

I gave Cupid Saturday off since he pretty much did double duty on Friday, so I thought he would be nice and fresh for our lesson on Sunday.  He started off pretty good.  He seemed a little distracted by things going on outside the arena, but kept working and listening to me just looked around and whinnied a few times.  But midway through he decided to stop and balk!  He tested me for a moment, but eventually I got him going and he was great afterwards.  We ended with some nice stretching trot.

On Monday I planned to go for a little hack around the property, since I thought maybe a day out of the arena would do him good.  But it was so foggy I could barely see anything!  So instead I decided to lunge him a bit with our balancing side reins, which we haven't done in a while.  Cupid was good, if a touch lazy.

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