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Thread: Major schooling this morning (CC please)

  1. #1
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    Default Major schooling this morning (CC please)

    Hello everyone!

    Well it must be at least a day since i last posted photos of him musn't it?

    I was meant to be having a lesson this morning, however it would seem that my instructor forgot to put it in his diary and was up north judging something! So i figured as i'd managed to drag a grumpy OH to the yard with me i best make the most of it and try some sort of schooling.

    As well as my lessons have been going i've found it very hard to achieve anything like it without the presence of my instructor. I don't really know why because i always feel like i'm doing the same things but anyway started off more or less the same today, pony TOTALLY ignoring me and looking at just about everything else but the job he was being asked to do. Typical thoroughbred he has the attention span of a gnat.

    But then i must of done something right because suddenly i had my lovely pony! This is quite a big achievement for me because his re-schooling has been a bit of an uphill battle when it comes to flatwork so this was a real break through. I'm sure he wasn't as nice as he would be during a lesson (not had a video man for a good 7 or 8 lessons now!) but it's 100% better than what we usually achieve. Canter is still embarrasing on both our parts, but it'll come when he (well and me!) gets a bit stronger. We did some more medium trot, which i'm sure i'm doing all wrong but still it feels good instructor has told me it's good to change the speed of the trot (for both of us) to keep him listening and says the medium trot is good (when he's there anyway!) and at this point if Major stretches down i should try and follow him with my hands hence why they are maybe a bit low in some photos.

    Anyway enough chat here are the photos... Oh and excuse his hat, he doesn't like the flys in his ears!

    "Not really interested mum"



    Then i tried something my instructor has said to do, getting right out the saddle and asking him this way...





    Which really helps, then eventually...





















    As you can see, i very much love my pony!



    OH on him...



    Heading back in...



    Bath time



    Some well earned grub



    So a little bit of constructive CC is welcome, but can you see the difference?






  2. #2

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    He looks lovely. Just a little bit of CC, not so keen on pics 3 and 4. The bit isnt really going to be sitting in the right part of the mouth for him to become soft in the contact. To get the long and low you need to be working him over his back more so his back becomes supple and swingy like your pics towards the end. Also try not to turn your hands down think thumbs on top. But you really can see a definite improvement!

  3. #3
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    Default

    Lovely photos, he is stunning!

    Cant offer any CC though.

  4. #4
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    Aww Major I can definitely see an improvement, he looks a lot more relaxed and attentive than in the older photos, you look more relaxed as well which is really nice to see. It's also really pleasant to see someone reschooling an ex-racehorse in a saddle, simple bridle and nout else

    In terms of CC though, I would question the effectiveness of the exercise your instructor has suggested here -

    Quote Originally Posted by Cinnabar View Post


    By doing this, straightening your arms and losing the bend in your elbow, your contact becomes fixed and quite unforgiving - your hands have essentially become side reins here. Look especially at the second of the above photos how the bit is being pulled through his mouth slightly - think about what the bit is doing inside his mouth at this point, it will be putting excess pressure on his tongue causing him to lower his head to try to escape it. That isn't the same as dropping his head because he is softening to the contact and working into it from behind. Towards the end you can see he is starting to use his hindquarters more and lift and use his back, and his entire frame looks more relaxed - combine that with a softer, more elastic contact and he will be working very nicely

  5. #5
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    Overall he's looking much more relaxed and softer - not that high tense short neck he had before.

    However I agree with Joosie and Sparkle. Your hand position is going to cause the bit to bear down onto the bars of the mouth - it's almost forcing him down, rather than asking him and supporting that ask with exercises to encourage it. I noticed it in another report you did recently but didn't like to mention it if you weren't looking for crit. Joosie explains the problem with the straightened arms (as a result of trying to lower him with your hands) well - you're loosing the 'shock absorbers' of any unwanted movement. To boot, the knock on effect is it tips your weight forward, which loads the shoulders, which won't help him lighten and eventually lift the front end (I don't mean lift the head as I know you want that nice and low for stretch at the moment, but I mean through the shoulders. You obviously want to avoid putting him onto the forehand).

    I think a wide hand (when needed) is fine to help support him, but I'd really be looking to lift the hands and encourage him to stretch through a gentle feel of the reins. If that isn't working, it's because he needs support to engage him better elsewhere and all the low hands do imo is hide that.

    However otherwise I think you're on the right track - he's looking well and definately more relaxed. Towards the end you can see he's really starting to engage, and I think with some more work you'll be flying. Now you have the brain engaged, you can start engaging the body more (that's something I'm battling with myself atm with the coloured I'm riding - his brain is very difficult to engage, but once it is, the rest follows quite nicely!).

    Well done
    .

  6. #6
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    Thanks everyone! My hands are a real nightmare, and that's an improvement i look like i'm riding a bike most the time!

    It's difficult because of course my instructor has seen him for a few months in person now and this is what he's told me to do so i'm inclined to carry on with it for now, not because i think your wrong at all! I do have a tendancy to stiffen my upper body and arms, which definitely doesn't help!

    Thanks for al lthe suggestions!

    We're BOTH very green but i think we're on the right track

  7. #7
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    Agree with above posters - he is looking fab!

    Also, it is easy to get any horse's head 'lowered' using that 'side rein position' technique. Although it is not useful to be doing all the time - it does have its uses! I have done exactly the same when having a 'discussion' with a horse about where I would like his head to be. Trotting a few circles in that 'side rein' position just reminds naughty horse where I would like his head to be please! However, it is not achieving anything like a true outline. Not a great habit to get into, but like I have said it definitely has had it's time and place when I have resorted to using it. A more productive approach to use - if you are using this technique consistently - would be to carry your hands a lot higher (but still a lot lower that where you would ideally carry them) and wider, creating a V shape. Then work on getting the forwards impulsion INTO your V. Eventually you can start to close your hands together whilst maintaining a good contact. HTH! Keep going with him you are doing very well indeed (and that is coming from someone who has experience reschooling ex racers ).

  8. #8
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    Thank you WP, i only trot one circle (20m) on each rein doing it, that's what instructor has suggested i do when i'm having 'issues' as far as getting him listening goes! I'm having to work quite hard at getting him going forward, lot's of transitions as he can be quite behind the leg (wish he was like that out hacking hehe) but he's improving al lthe time. As he gets stronger and more balanced he seems to improve also.

    Thanks again

  9. #9
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    Having had my very own nightmare tb to reschool on the flat I'm not going to say that exercise is a bad idea. Its not how you should ride all the time but if it works to get him listening and paying attention so that you can then ride 'correctly' and get nice work from him I see no problem with it.
    For example, I have to do all sorts of strange exercises with Jimmy just to get him listening enough to then work correctly when given the right aids.

    Smile because it happened.
    Jimmy 2003-2011

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by igloo View Post
    Having had my very own nightmare tb to reschool on the flat I'm not going to say that exercise is a bad idea. Its not how you should ride all the time but if it works to get him listening and paying attention so that you can then ride 'correctly' and get nice work from him I see no problem with it.
    For example, I have to do all sorts of strange exercises with Jimmy just to get him listening enough to then work correctly when given the right aids.
    yeah this is why i do it, he seems to go "oh okay, i'm listening" after one circle doing it! It's far too un-comfy to do for a long period of time anyway

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