Sunday, April 19, 2015

A long ride

This morning I met my adult leaser, H., who rides Rondo on Sundays, at the barn.  We rode together and had a great, long ride.  I got to see how she's doing on Rondo, and had an opportunity to ride Panama for the first time in a few weeks.  Between getting sick (again), working extra to help out on of my families over spring break, and my upset over my trainer's tragedy, I just haven't gotten out to ride in a while.

As I expected, Panama was pretty amped up.  I did turn him out yesterday so he had a chance to release some of his energy then, but he loved riding and tends to get overly excited about it when we haven't ridden in a while.  We had to work through some energy and head-shaking (wanting to buck and run, and being irritated with me for not letting him), as well as some spookiness about his favorite scary corner, the corner of the indoor arena where we keep the jumps.  There's also a horse ball and a folded-up tarp there at the moment.

Panama has always spooked at that corner when he's feeling spooky or amped.  He shies at it every time the stuff kept there moves around or changes, even though it's all stuff he knows and likes.  (At the end of our ride, after he'd calmed down, we got the ball out and pushed it around a little.)  It took a little while before he was able to walk by the corner without staring and shying, and once he was able to do that, we moved up to the trot.

I waited a while before cantering him, but when I finally did he had calmed down enough that he was darn near perfect.  In fact, H. complimented his canter, saying it looks really comfortable.  And you know, it actually is -- I actually like the way he pushes off and has a lot of floaty air time, and how he has less rock and more forward motion than Rondo, even though it was scary canter to learn on.  It's also much easier to two-point his canter than it is on Rondo, as Rondo has a lot more vertical motion in his shoulders to absorb than Panama does.

I had no idea how much time had passed until much later, but we ended up riding for over an hour and a half.  It was really good for us -- good exercise and practice for both me and Panama, and a good opportunity to get him calm down so that we could get some good work done before finishing.  I was really pleased with our ride.

Hopefully it won't be as long before our next ride.  I'm actually hoping to get out to the barn for a ride tomorrow or Tuesday evening, although we'll see how that pans out (no pun intended).

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