Why Savanah Kicks Butt

I started my lesson yesterday on the longe with Savanah, working on my position / seat. I love these lessons. I actually feel an improvement every time. Not sustainable without repetition, but  very motivating. This time I stayed with Savanah after we took the longe off and we worked on my position off the longe line, while also practicing aids she knows and Rogo is learning. She is SO FUN to ride. She is very big (her picture is on the right sidebar; she's half draft), but very flexible and sensitive to the aids. I love riding Rogo, but he just doesn't know what she knows and it's so great to be on a horse who reacts to each half halt, moves easily / quickly off my leg, goes forward energetically / enthusiastically in the trot when asked, even lengthening easily, cantering from walk without thinking about it, etc., etc. She only went as far as Level One test one when I was riding her, but she knows this stuff so well. I'm hoping Doug will finish Level One with her this coming year so they can start Level Two the following year. She's very ready for that.
After riding Savanah I longed and rode Rogo and was able to carry over my position work. Now to practice and solidify it - heels down!
There was a lot of ice coming off the roof when I rode, but both horses were really good. I'm the nervous one :)
Speaking of drafts and dressage...
Have you seen the video of the Pony and Shire Pas De Deux? Although I think there were some snippy comments on You Tube (by far over ridden by positive comments), I think it's great. I had a look and there were actually quite a few Shire dressage videos. I'd love to ride one. Jeni at Supersize My Cob is doing dressage with her 17 hand Percheron (and she's only 5 feet). I'm jealous!


Glad you enjoyed your ride with Savannah and were able to carry it over to Rogo.

I just love that video - especially the pony extended trot / shire collected canter part. and the music is perfect :)
juliette said…
Oh! That video and music is just too cute for words!!! Tears and laughter here!

That is so great that you can practice on big girl Savannah and then transfer to sweet boy Rogo! You have wonderful horses - especially staying calm through scary sliding roof ice.
juliette said…
oops!...Sorry about the Savanah extra "n"!
Jeni said…
Hay Carol Thank you for the mention and link!! I hope to get back to riding soon. I'm finally pain free and started back into Yoga to strengthen my core. Goal is to get a few easy hacks out on on Bonnie, then as soon as our weather co-operates back into training for Rosie and I. And I will canter her.. I swear I will LOL! 17 HH and 2000 lbs is a lot of horse!

I too need some lunge lessons to continue working on my hands and balance.

I had not seen that video before WOW !!! My first horse was a shetland.. lil turd it was!
Jan said…
Carol, It sounds like you had such a valuable time longing with Savanah; it does help us to do these exercises. Sometimes riding a different horse frees up our mind a bit from the things we are usually thinking about when on our regular horse. I'm glad you could feel some improvement in yourself. Isn't it wonderful when we feel even a tiny bit of improvement - riding well is really hard, so any bit of improvement is such an accomplishment! Good work!
Achieve1dream said…
Cool video. Thanks for sharing.

Sounds like you had a fabulous lesson!! I haven't ever had a longe lesson but I can see those in my future for when I start Chrome. :)
Hurricanes12 said…
oh the things i would do for a shire horse :) they're too beautiful!

good on you for keeping up with the lunge lessons, don't the insides of your thighs hurt heaps?

i read a while back you didn't think you were sat evenly across both seatbones, it made me realise i don't either! is the lunge lessons helping this?
I have seen the video and love it. Being longed on a horse is one of the best lessons, I wish we had a horse that would be safe doing this. I'm partial to big drafty horses too. We have Donnie who is half QH and half Percheron. He's gorgeous and is quite a nice mover. Glad you had fun with Savannah she sounds like a special girl.
Carol said…
Grey Horse Matters - Donnie sounds wonderful.
Hurricanes12 - yes, my whole inner legs kill me. It must be working! :) And yes, the longe is helping with getting my weight even on my seat bones. I can feel a real difference and it's actually starting to 'feel' right to be evenly balanced instead of feeling right to be on the right.
I had written a big list of bullets about why I love Savanah, but then worried that it sounded braggy and smug so deleted it before posting. In retrospect I think it's okay to talk about why you love a certain horse. I may post it another time :)
You are so lucky to have a dependable schoolmaster like Savanah to work with in addition to your young horse! It helps so much with getting (and keeping) the feel you need on the young horse. Horses like Savanah are worth their weight in gold, you should brag about her!
Rising Rainbow said…
I think any time you can ride multiple horses is a big help to one's riding. Just the difference in feel between two horses, let alone their different issues as well as the rider's is such an opportunity for growth.

Who knows the day might come when you appreciate the challenge of the young horse over the well trained one.

The video is awesome.
Barbara said…
That was a great video, thanks for posting.
Jan said…
It took me a while to watch this video on a faster computer than my home computer, but I finally did. And it is wonderful! Not just the juxtaposition of the large horse and the tiny horse (how creative an idea to do that) but the patterns they did together, and how much they stayed in synch with each other (no small feat, given the size differences). I loved it! Especially the part where the Shire is going down the center line and the pony makes a series of circles around the shire! Adorable! Thanks for sharing this.