Monday, August 22, 2011

Riding with the hubby

Sunday, I convinced my husband to come for a ride with me.

Afterall, part of the goal with sending Cody to a trainer last year was getting her tuned-up and been-there-done-that enough for me to not worry about her with my husband or anyone else.

Cody has been doing very well with her new bit. She is quite responsive and she really is a good girl. She does, however, test her new riders...and because of that she probably will never be a complete beginners horse. She's not naughty, she just tries stuff (always does, even with me) and if she gets away with it, she'll keep doing it. Just little things, like walking really slow, turning back toward home, pretending she doesn't really know what you mean when you ask her to turn and it is away from home, eating grass, trotting when she wasn't asked. She always tries these little things with me too, but simple quick corrections discourage her and she won't try them further. Part of the pretending she doesn't really know what you mean when you are turning her, could also be conflicting cues given by a rider that she's not accustomed to. But she does try it a bit with me when we are still at home in the yard and heading out.
Other than that, she is great. She's responsive...a simple squeeze will send her up into the next gait and another little squeeze will up it again. Todd had her cantering at one point when he squeezed too hard, but she's not naughty and they enjoyed a nice canter before he asked her to walk again. She was walking a bit slow for him though, and that's because he is not accustomed to "riding" his horse. He hasn't really ridden in over 20 years, he said. He grew up riding horses a lot, but they didn't ride with seat and legs...they rode with a lot of whoa and go using reins and kicking. In fact, they used to put bucking straps on their horses just to get them to buck! Crazy kids. Anyway, when I told him how to get Cody to walk faster by riding her faster, it took some practice for him, but he was pleased when he could get her to walk faster by using his seat and legs to push her a bit more. But she'd drop back to her slow pace when he quit. He's used to just sitting on a horse like it's a lounge chair. Most people like a nice slow horse, but Todd is a bit hyperactive himself...he likes that all business, quick pace.

I think it was good for him to just relax with Cody and let go of that. He said he had a lot of fun riding with me and he wouldn't mind doing it once a week...but I know that won't happen! I'll be lucky if I get him out once a month! He's got a lot to do and riding does take a lot of time out of that! But I'm glad he finally did it with me and saw what it was like so that next time I ask, he'll have that fun previous experience to draw on.

And we keep calling Cody 'his' horse, and he uses 'his' saddle on her, so that will probably help him too. He did tell me that he'd be more willing to ride with me if he doesn't have to do all the messing around with them before and after (which is the part I like to do anyway). I can tack up (which I want to do because I'm kind of particular about it when it's my horses) and call him when they are all ready to go and then he'll ride with me! Sounds like a good deal to me!

And the horses got to enjoy a nice roll in the sand when we got back! Cody accidently kicked Chico in the jaw in her exuberence with getting sand in all her cracks.

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