Met Yvonne at the end of the track today and long reined Kestrel home so that he could be tacked up. It's rare for me to long rein without a surcingle or a saddle and you do have to be careful of the position of the reins and that the horse doesn't stand on them if he puts his head down.
Back out with Yvonne on board and we're practising breathing (always helps!) and checking for tension in her body which might translate to tension in his.
Out on the road we've only got a little way to go to get onto the Forest. Kestrel was fine with passing cars.
For now we're staying on the lead rein out on the open Forest to avoid any trouble. It's good when a rider can forget their ego in this way and just enjoy the ride as it is. Kestrel was calm and happy.
On the way home he watched the tractor and trailer go by as if it were a tennis match.
My second Valentine's date was with new pony, Jasmine with an S, so not to be confused with Jazmine with a Z, although this one has a dash of Arab too. Jasmine has a very interesting history, coming off the Forest at 9 months old but infortunately left hanging from a fence by her back leg during a drift that went wrong. Now rising 8 she has fully recovered from those injuries but other health problems have got in the way. Nevertheless, what her owner hasn't been able to do in quantity, she has achieved in quality, and Jasmine is a well mannered, amenable, responsive pony.
In just one hour we were able to check her groundowork, just honing one or two things, and then on to desensitisation techniques.
Jasmine has neither been spoilt or spoiled and therefore she accepts things easily.
She really enjoys following things and is curious about everything.
During our next session we'll probably do some more of this since owner Kirsty fancies the idea of doing Horse Agility with her, and we'll also see what happens when we take her out and about.
I'm always interested to find out what people do for a living and what influence that might have on the way that they train their horses. Kirsty project manages in the building industry and this shows in her methodical approach and clarity.
"Really enjoyed the lesson last Saturday and I found the report super helpful and positive!"KM
My own girls were making the most of the blackened gorse this afternoon. They are both looking really well with very little supplemental feed.