We've had a really good, busy week after XC schooling which started with a nice gentle plod around the lanes the following day to check for any stiffness or soreness anywhere. Buddy bounced round the hack, full of his own self importance and I just spent the time giggling as he was so funny!
It was my husband's birthday after Easter so we all had a well deserved day of rest and relaxation. A dressage lesson followed where we spent most of the session working in canter as this has improved dramatically and we are now starting to introduce novice level movements to get ready for our first test. The test we are looking at has 15m canter loops so we were introducing those which were tough on our brains! I was shifting my weight and/or changing the bend just prior to the track which led to beautiful flying changes from Buddy - one of the joys of having a youngster who was backed with show jumping in mind. As a result we tweaked the exercise slightly and worked on canter loops instead to get us both thinking forward. For some reason my brain really struggled with maintaining the correct bend to maintain the right canter lead so it was a bit messy at first but after a few goes I got it and it was great.
We have been practising since and we (me) are slowly getting there but his canter is coming on in leaps and bounds, is starting to feel established and he is allowing me to just sit and enjoy it which is great.
|Chilling in the lorry|
Then, as a reward, we had a yard trip to Barbury Castle for their fun ride. We took a couple of 4 yo's and Buddy was chief babysitter for the day. Despite the horrific weather it was packed - I think everyone had the same idea as us and thought it would be quiet! We had a brilliant time and popped plenty of jumps and it was great practise for me to jump several fences out of a forward rhythm. Buddy felt great and full of beans at the end so I am more than happy with his fitness as the ground was pretty holding in places.
The only real disappointment was the lack of manners shown by so many of the other riders on course. We lost count of the riders cantering past without so much as an excuse me and no one slowed down even when we called we had two babies who were a bit alarmed by it initially - where have the manners gone?!
The next couple of weeks are going to be busy for Buddy and I as we have a few competitions planned so hopefully we will have some good news from those!