Saturday, 22 March 2014

Saturday Stills and Polework

Photos in today's post are a mixture of those left over from Thursday & a couple of shots I snapped today, although I forgot to take a picture of my pole positioning but I have done an "amazing" paint rendition.

Click to enlarge -
but be warned I am no artist!
I was a little later arriving at the yard then I'd hoped, but it thankfully worked out in my favour as I got an arena where I was able to put out some poles for myself and the girls.

She's not standing great & looking a bit chubby...more work in her future
I started with Kika and decided to try my luck and ride her without the flash, if feeling fussy she can play with getting her tongue over the bit and avoiding work but as she has been so good lately I figured I'd give it a shot and have the flash on hand in case it didn't work out and I needed a bit of help. Just as I snapped the poor body shot of her (above) a friend came into the arena with her mare who is rehabbing from an injury with walking and a bit of trotting.


K was an angel, warmed up lovely and soft and went through the poles without a fuss. We strung them together in  a course with lots of twisting and turning and changes of pace. I also got some fab canter departs immediately after the poles without an iota of fuss, she really impressed me with how she kept everything together even when we'd have to go from trot/canter to a quick poorly planned downward transition if I felt we would get too close to the rehabbing horse and might upset the apple cart. As it was at a friends party this evwning with this rider and she said I was one of the most considerate riders she has shared the arena with while rehabbing - which is always a lovely thing tk hear and one of ny major bug bears often bemoaned on this blog: inconsiderate arena etiquette.

Nancy was next and I was again blessed (initially) with the arena to myself, K warmed up lovely with some w/t/c before we tackled the poles. She was such a good girl and really responding to what I was asking of her that I managed to get a turn on her that I could never have gotten on Kika and she is too squirrelly, which I found incredibly ironic and Nancy can be a little harder to manoeuver than Kika who is more athletic but in this instance Nancy's slower pace and different center of gravity worked in our favour for getting a the turn that I would have had to fight tooth & nail with Kika to get right to tackle the poles - funny how things work out sometimes. (C set of poles on the right rein riding in the direction the "c" is facing in above awesome paint job)

Who is starting to look like a proper horse?!
N was so good, that I attempted canter departs after the poles at she nailed each one. Although unlike with Kika I didn't ask N for them immediately after landing from the pole line but rather after a few strides to rebalance and when we hit a corner to help us both out.
They are both such legends in their own way. #PonyLove
We were then joined by two girls and their horses who were walking around as N and I linked the pole sets together in two courses, ran through each once and asked her to re-do a line of three at one stage as she blew through my aids on the final pole set wanting to gawp at the other horses. I also rode her without her flash for the first time since I've owned her to see what she made of it. Although since she used to be ridden in a bridle without a noseband (because none were big enough for her noggin) I wasn't surprised that the lack of flash made no difference to her - I think I shall keep riding without in arena work to see how we get on for a while.

She's too cute in watching me - but makes for a poor confo shot
... not unlike Kika's above although K is also standing horribly
I shall now shut up my gushing and leave you with the left over photos from my previous post of the girls on turnout where I caught photographic evidence that proves Kika can play nice and share with Nancy when she has half a mind to...Mind you to see how narky & ratty K has been with both N and O in the turnout yesterday & today while I prepared the haynets, you wouldn't think her capable of playing nice with her shadow. Gosh she has been down right nasty towards them, ears flat back and threatening backing towards them if the others so much as look at her from over 2meters away. The only reasoning I can come up with for her truly nasty behaviour towards both of the others is that perhaps she is coming into season and hurting - but she is still being downright rude. All I can say is sorry to the other two horses and be grateful that K hasn't turned her foul mood on me & under saddle work - she has been a gem towards me.

N seems to be dwarfing K in this shot - funny what camera angle can distort

Love Nancy's eye in this

PS: I think after reading Hillary @EquestrianAtHart's Ogilvy post & the review posts she linked to in therein, I have been convinced to start saving for one or two of these pads. A Jumping one if it'll work for a GP & a Dressage one if there is a valid reason offered by research (i will do) as to why a jumping one won't also work under a dressage saddle. If this pad does as it claims and helps all saddles fit any horse, it could be a lifesaver for me with two horses with such different bodies types while giving me a bit more breathing space to save for saddles for them both. Either new or second hand - depending on what I can afford when push comes to shove and I can no longer make do with the GP & dressage saddles I have. As it is I can really only ride K in the GP & N in the Dressage saddle due to fit and how I am positioned in them on each horse. I sit terribly on N in the GP and am pretty sure Dressage saddle fits K too badly for her to play martyr with it much longer - so I don't ride her in it unless i absolutely have to...which is never unless a friend of mine is riding N - and not the Guru as she uses her own saddles on my girls. Which again is another reason for splurging on an Ogilvy as then all saddles will fit my monsters (in theory). Watch this space; if this pad can help finnickety Kika with saddle fit - you all know it is deff a winner, right?!
Well I can only speak for myself & I know I will most deff be convinced *nod*


  1. Yay for good rides and happy horses! I hate dealing with people that have poor arena etiquette. It's bad enough when someone is rude, it's even worse when they are so bad other horses and riders are at risk. Good for you for being considerate :) I'm sure the Oglivy's are wonderful. I'm still in the process writing my blog on my half pad findings. Hoping to get it done soon....

    1. Cannot wait to read your review post to help me make up my mind. ;-)

  2. Your girls are both beautiful and Nancy really does have a kind eye in many of these photos.

    The Ogilvy pads do sound super nice. I'll be very interested to see if it helps you guys out with the saddle fit issues.

    1. N is such a sweetheart and so gentle for her size. K can also be sweet but as she is alpha-mare she can't be seen to be molly coddling the human ;-)

  3. I love pole work! One of the ways I try to improve Wizard's canter departs is asking for a canter over a pole. It's kind of hard at first because he has to actually use his hind end instead of dragging himself into it, but it seems to help : ) Your horses are so lovely

    1. Aw thanks hun!
      I love pole work as it gives us something else to concentrate on while helping them stretch/change their stride in a non-stressful way. Plus its super fun for all involved...or maybe I'm projecting cos I enjoy it, although to see the girls lock on & prick their ears they are not unhappy in the change of pace from boring circles etc

  4. Your girls are beautiful - love me some foamy mouths (out of context this could be a very odd thing to say) :)

    Go you for being a considerate arena-mate - I can't stand riding with inconsiderate riders. The worst is when their horse's nose nearly goes up Gavin's butt. We just don't appreciate that!

    1. Hahaha - yes so many equine related things taken out of context would garner very strange looks, ;-)

      Thanks for your very sweet comment *blush*


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