Tuesday 18 October 2011

Final Oct Update for 2011

Well this will be my final October 2011 update as I'm off on holidays tomorrow until the 2nd of November, haven't had too many this month - Phew! I hear you sigh...
I didn't get much riding done last week as was evidenced from the previous blog update; however the weekend brought about a change in Kika's ridden fortune.
I rode her on friday evening, and felt she did really well for here mini-bootcamp weekend with L while i was in Ireland. I could feel a real difference in the way she moved and responded to my requests and she was calm and behaved impeccably. I was well happy with her!

Saturday, I asked L if she would ride her and show me what I am meant to be doing, as I didn't want to ride her two days in a row "unsupervised" and undo all the good work L had put in the previous weekend. She explained that I've to do less with my hands and more with my legs to encourage Kika to work more from behind. She also showed me what she meant by keeping the outside rein and re-inforced that i shouldn't rush changes to try and keep everything (all transitions whether speed or rein changes) as smooth as possible & that Kika is to be treated/ridden almost like a recently backed horse with over exagerated requests if she ignores the subtle ones. Not that she is slow, she said she is very responsive to leg aids and others, but that she needs consistency to help her understand and learn the responses being sought. L is taking over all schooling from Wednesday 19th of Oct (tomorrow and my birthday) until November 2nd when I'll return from my vacation. Kika's bootcamp commences - I'll have to be sure to get a few supervised sessions when i get back to get myself up to speed!

Some pictures and a video, so you loyal readers can see what Kika looks like when ridden properly!

LINK - incase you want to see images larger


LINK - my fav of the photos *swoon*

Also a quick video I took, I thought I'd taken a second one later in the session, but i mustn't have saved it properly as it is no longer on my phone! :(

Sunday; L, her mare O, her two dogs, Kika and myself went for a leisurely stroll and a teensy tiny bit of trotting in the woods for an hour. I think we managed to get the final good day of the year - weather was glorious! All went really well, we met loads of people out walking "en famille" and with dogs etc etc for a sunday stroll enjoying the lovely weather as were we - thankfully we had no problems, all went really smoothly including a chance happening upon a group of 4 teenagers all dressed up like Elves or something - 2 had their faces all painted black, one had some sort of a plastic sword strapped to their hip and the other had elf ears. At first i thought they were trick or treating, but as Halloween isn't for another 3 weeks I think they were possibly role playing or something...I have no idea - was deffo an experience and I'm glad there was two of us or no one would believe me if i told them!
All going well L said she hopes to continue to give Kika her change of scenery with weekend hacks while I'm away. Her dad has agreed to go with her on her mare while L takes Kika, can't remember if i mentioned that they tried this arrangement the weekend i was in Ireland and thoroughly enjoyed themselves.

So that's it from me for a while, hopefully all goes well in my absence. Unfortunately i didn't remember to take the promised fuzzy-butt photos to show how hairy she is and when I get back L has offered to clip her while I'm away, as she really does get very sweaty in work now which is unpleasant for her. Will snap some shots when i get back of her clip - all going well and fill you in on what she was up to with L while I was away.

Cross your fingers with me that all goes well!

Thursday 13 October 2011

No real news but an update all the same!

Still haven't managed to sit on my ponio since monday week, I did loose lunge the Hairy One for the first time since before her injury (back in May! ) on Tuesday evening and she was good as gold - lazy out but thankfully no mad taking off and crazy buck/farting shenanigans she can be prone to.
I had great plans to ride last night, but vet called to say she would swing by to give her the first of her Sarkoid (dunno if spelling the same in english) injections - she'll get a total of four over the next few months for the warts i found a few months back...thankfully those that were treated in June/July haven't looked like growing back and the one that we couldn't get rid of due to positioning on her hind leg hasn't grown any more - hopefully these are good signs!
L reported back that all went really well with her over the weekend while i was away, she rode her Friday in the outdoor, Saturday in one of the indoors with two others and then on Sunday she hacked out the woods with her while her dad took her mare O. She was very happy with her and said that after a little cooersion/convincing that Kika led most of the way,

I probably won't make it to the barn myself this evening and if i do i won't be able to do anything with her as will probably still be in office clothes, have an art/photography exhibition by the wife of one of the Judges to go to to show face and play nice. Plus my parents have some of her painitings and photographs at home, they are nice - i am actually looking forward to it.
It deffo doesn't help that the weather is after taking a turn for the minging and is dreary, grey and rainy most of the time so ould Fuzzy-bum will have to return to the walker to dry off before i'll be able to de-muckyfy her to tack up and do some work which will result in major sweating due to aforementioned hairiness and further walker time to dry her off afterwards as i don't want to put her back out into the field sweaty! Scared mammy here, thinking she'll catch ponio pneumonia!
Also sucks that it is now dark at 7.20pm in Lux!
Boo Hiss, I miss Spring already!

Right once, more shall have to cut off my waffling there!
I really don't know how i find so much to say considering we haven't actually done anything! Perhaps i use too many words....who knows?!

I'll try to think of snapping some shots of the Hairy One if i cna get her dry before riding her tomorrow or over the weekend!

Thursday 6 October 2011

Another "quick" update

Kika is being a dream, have been meaning to update. Work hasn't quietened down enough for me to update as much as i'd like, but I did get to take herself out for a spin Sat (woods), Sun (arena) and Monday (Pole work)!

I am so happy with her at the moment, Tuesday was her day off and i went to the cinema so haven't had seen her since monday evening, but she is being a very good girl and a big pet - affectionate even which she hasn't been for a while and i am not one bit unhappy about,
Saturday we went for a 2 hour hack in the woods with L and her dogs, we even trotted an cantered and went up and down hills which in Kika's bad time back in March led to tantrums at being asked to go down hills as back not up for it, but she is much more chilled out these days - fingers crossed it all continues to go smoothly! Every outing we do in the woods she relaxes sooner on each occasion, helps that we've been able to get out the last few weekends in a row with the same people so repitition definitely helps! Hoping to keep our weekend hacks as a fixture during autumn and winter so that we don't spend the whole time in arenas! The farrier is actually coming this evening and we'll get "special" shoes with tiny little stud type things to help prevent her slipping on the tarmac as she's to walk on "road" back and forth to access the field and to get to the woods. As the situation currently stands with the "normal" shoes she starts slipping after 2 weeks and then slips on and off, getting progressively worse for the next 4 weeks until she gets shod again.
When i say studs, these aren't the ones I have to put in and remove myself, they are little ones that are permanantly on the heels of her shoes and give her better grip when walking on road...or at least that is the plan, seeing as this will be my first time using them I'll have to see how they work!

Sunday we worked just the two of us in an arena, L opted to watch us as she was hanging around but said she'd leave us to it and try not to comment - she did give me some tips but bit her tongue mostly as I'm sure there was plenty more she could have pulled me up on! Mostly she kept correcting me as i've a terrible habit of being on the wrong diagonal when trotting and not realising!
There was another girl trying out a pony in the arena at the same time as we were riding and all the girls in and around her age (it seemed to me) were there to watch and see how she got on so to say there was a bit of a crowd would be a bit of an understatement, i reckon there was about 10 of them at one stage lol, and as they are like myself and horse-mad I am sure they couldn't help but watch/sneak a peak at myself and Kika (I don't mean to sound big headed here, it's just i know i can't help watching horses no matter who's riding them/owns them etc etc). So L was conscious of this and for fear of gossip and so as not to step on the on-site instructors toes we don't advertise the fact that she helps me out sometimes (*ahem* a lot of the time but we act like it's coincidental! )
What was nice actually was that after i finished up a few of the young ones (15-17/18yr olds) were nicely complimentary of Kika and how well she behaved - they have I'm sure been privy to some if not all of the info/gossip surrounding our difficulties over the last 12months - it's a big yard as in there are close to if not more than 100 liveries, but it's still a gossipy/smallish community, again not meaning to sound big headed but seeing as Kika initially started rearing and dumped instructors back in November I can only assume word spread about her antics.

Monday then I finally got back to some pole work with L, we had wanted to work in an indoor but they were all busy so ended up outside under the floodlights which wasn't ideal as some of the lights weren't working so light was a bit of an issue and the main reason why i opted to stick with pole work and not pop actual cross poles or straight bars as lack of light would lead to mistakes and worse case scenario - injuries!
I felt we did some nice work, even though i was a bit hesitent at first about cantering herself as i could feel her getting fizzy and new i didn't really have her full concentration so was worried about an explosion once we moved up a gear. The chicken that i am let L know that i wasn't feeling the canter straight away, I told her i want to do it/but don't want to do it - but that i would do it in my own time. Happy with that she said she knew what i meant, although i'm not sure i really knew what i meant so fair play to her if she could make sense of it, - and when i felt Kika settled to my liking we did a small circle in canter (bad rein) and L was happy and said to continue with our trotting pole work after that. I don't feel i can do justice in describing the excercices she had us doing but it amounted to lots of turning and circling before pole and after, all keeping Kika bending and supple - which when she is not warmed up sufficiently can still cause us problems. Slowly but surely i do feel like we are getting there - hopefully this does come across in my waffling posts!

Now that I've managed to write another novel length post and am later at work than i intended to be, best sign off! I honestly hadn't intended for this post to get this long!
I'd love to get some new pics or more videos as rewards to those who read my long-winded attempts at blogging, but will have to see when i can next find a pair of hands to do the necessary