Winter Pursuits

First a reference to the 'Why I Love My Horse' stories that many bloggers posted for Valentines Day (suggested by the Literary Horse I believe). I loved these stories! I love hearing about how people acquire and develop a bond with their horses. There was so much interesting background that I learned about many of the bloggers I follow.
I've posted several times about why I love and treasure Rogo, so I won't bore anyone again with it at this time. I can't make any promises about the future though :)
Doug and I did free lunging over a jump and ground poles with Savanah, Rogo and Dan yesterday. They get better and better each time we do it. I can really see Rogo starting to figure out what jumps are. We switched from cross rails to a 3+ ft. jump with Savanah and Rogo and they did great, sometimes going over it together. It was sooo pretty. We do Dan separately. Three of them at liberty at the same time would be too much!
Rogo will totally stay on the circuit to do the poles and jump, and feels very responsible to herd Savanah around it too. He doesn't actually touch her - just gets behind her and uses body language to drive her forward and stay on the track. She thinks it's really funny if she ducks out every few turns. She thinks she's really putting one over on us. Anyway, I'm very pleased with how they are doing, lengthening over the poles and figuring out the jump. It's conditioning them and they're having fun.
I got some great feedback on my equitation goals from my last post (thanks very much - I'm going to use this stuff) and clearly I can't work on equitation without being on my horse :( . My plan when I got to the barn was that Doug would  lunge me on Rogo after the free lunging, but Rogo went so well and had so much fun I was loath to make him do serious work. I remember my goal of fun only days while working on forward. If I can get him going forward better it will solve about 75% of my equitation issues, so it isn't a total loss.
Today we stayed home and had Joan, our original dressage teacher (who I'm now able to go back to after family health issues kept her away for a while), down for lunch and viewing dressage videos from . We had a ball. She selected Arthur Kottas, Stephan Peters, Betsey Steiner and George Williams for this first session. We didn't watch the complete session with all of them (it would have taken too long), but we got a good flavor of each with a young horse. Here are Joan, Doug and Mom by the fire, eating quiche that Doug made, salad that I made and having a glass of wine. Doug made brownies for desert. Winter dressage has it's leisurely days too :)

Tomorrow the two week goals get attacked - connection, long canter legs and legs lightly on at all times.


thanks for commenting and yeah it was hard to stay on at one point i was praying to the horse gods and thanking them that i had a jump vest on
Lori Skoog said…
I envy the way you two work with your horses so regularly. I have not gotten the lead out all winter...just a caretaker (even tho that gives me pleasure too).
Hurricanes12 said…
you sure know how to treat your riding instructor :)

i also think it's great that despite it being winter, you're keeping your horses in work!

rogo is such a character, you can see his personality coming through in all of your posts, i'm glad he's figuring out jumping and getting the hang of it. will you jump him under saddle occasionally?

and also, even though you didn't do a valentines post about how you fell in love with rogo, you didn't need to. everyone can tell you love him lots, though i'm sure it would be fantastic if you did one similar in the future.
The free lunging and jumps sound good and they seem to have had some fun too. I think that's a great way to train. There should be fun and not serious training everyday. I think they learn quicker this way.

It's nice that your trainer is back and how nice to have a video afternoon watching dressage with friends.
Anonymous said…
Sounds like a fun time! You are very fortunate to have Doug as a riding partner.
I would love to have someone to lunge for me. I know hubby would do it if I asked but he already does so much I hesitate to drag him into the middle of the arena, lol.
Jan said…
Oh, your lunging and working on the poles and jumps with both horses at the same time sounds absolutely wonderful! Rogo knows his new work (exercising Savanah) well, doesn't he! What a great way to help your horses have fun, get some great work done that is out of the ordinary and have fun with their humans!
Achieve1dream said…
Cool! I want to see pictures of them jumping together. I bet they are beautiful. :D I think fun days are really important for not burning them out.
juliette said…
Thank you for sharing the story of your gang free lunging and also for the photo of everyone enjoying a warm afternoon in front of the fire with dressage videos. Perfect! I have often envisioned this picture because you mention the fire and your mom - I am so glad to have the real image! Also, I love your plan of fun days only while working toward forward - Rogo will not disappoint you. He is quite the "teacher" with Savanah!