Liberty, Bareback & Bridleless

What a difference a week makes… we went from Hot ‘n Humid to fall weather! I love it!

LIBERTY

I got out by Charmer both Saturday and Sunday this weekend, both days were awesome! Both days, I brought her in the arena and just played at liberty. I am taking a totally different approach with Charm and it’s working SO well! I worked on draw.. keeping her with me and hoping through that, she will want to be with me. For the most part she does, but usually when I get too big.. she runs off. This time, I kept everything at a phase one or two and it worked really well. I think she left me once or twice.. and both times before she got too far away.. I just disengaged her and she came right back ears forward with a nice expression. For the first time in the arena, I played with changes of gait and since we have practiced so much in the round pen, she “got it” at a longer distance. I felt she thought there was more purpose to it and was a lot more eager to come into me. So walk, trot, canter, trot, walk at liberty both directions and her bring back was VERY consistent. The liberty highlight for me was on Sunday, I was playing with circles again and she came off of the far wall and did close range circling with me at the trot!! I mean, she was an arms length away! I was so surprised and excited, that I exclaimed to Sofie “Look! She’s doing close range circling!!!” at which point, Charm stopped and looked at me, with a look that said, “Is this what you wanted?” Aww! Yay!! The only other time she has ever done that is when I had a bucket of grain that was bribing her to come in. This time, it was just me and a few treats that I always have in my pocket.

BAREBACK & BRIDLELESS

After our successful liberty sessions, I thought I would jump on bareback and bridleless and see what we could accomplish. I haven’t ridden bridleless for most of the summer. For not any specific reason, we just haven’t. I haven’t ridden bareback and bridleless for a long time! I usually at least have the bareback pad. Charm just had that look about her.. and I knew she wouldn’t let me down. Well, she didn’t. Both days we had a fabulous ride with just a carrot sick and savvy string to aid us. We did mostly walking and trotting and worked on our turns and used the power of focus. We also worked on backing with just my seat and she did great and became really soft and straight. We did some cantering too and also some big stops just for fun. My seat has gotten so much better.. there was only one point where I started to loose my balance. We were cantering around the arena and she took a turn a lot tighter than I anticipated. Well, I just grabbed her to stay on and she stopped in her tracks. That was neat too. I have to say, for the first time, I really felt truly that she was my feet and I was the brain. I just had to think of where to go and she followed. It was a great weekend, and just reaffirms to me that I am finally taking the right approach with her.

I brought Fiona out to the barn with me on Saturday.. she loves it there! She waited in the car for me while I played with Charm. Then afterward we went for a nice walk around the fields. She was so happy. Her itchiness has gone away somewhat. I saw a flea on her so she got a frontline applied immediately.. and also I have been giving her benadryl to help too. I hope the rain helps with whatever is in the air. Her legs aren’t too terrible, but some thin areas need to grow back.

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