First lesson of the next group of 10 but I am just going to continue numbering them as if it were in sequence.
It was after 7 by the time we got to the barn tonight. I groomed and put Coopers boots on him and took him into the round pen as the sun was going down. By the time I was done that and tacked up it was time to for the lesson. It is dark now and the earlier lesson was indoors too, I think it was too cold for them outdoors. It will soon be too dark to do round pen work and we will have to go right into our lesson with no ground work. Now that will be fun!! There is no light in the outdoor arena yet for working out there, it would still be good to use when it's not raining and at least until the snow and ice come.
At the beginning we were jogging around the outside of arena, 10 strides then keeping collected do an extended trot for 20 strides, sitting deep when jogging, trying to relax and breathe ( I was not doing that good at all this night). We then did the zig zagging serpentine from one end of arena to the other, changing directions each time and trying to keep his head and neck in between the reins. I was having a hard time, the legs and body did not want to work right, and that was making Cooper fidgety. My hands were all over, this way, that way, up down and all around OH BOY!! I could not relax my seat, legs, shoulders and neck and was very sore at the end. My butt does not work right either as I do not have a lot of feeling down my backside and back of my legs because of the myelomeningocele, so trying to do the figure 8's with my hip bones. There were a few good moments though, it wasn't all rough.
I found that his speed was fairly good in one direction then when we went the other way he would speed up like he was in a race. Most of these times were when he was near one of his favorite pasture mates, who had joined the lessons with us for the first time.
I have to remember to try to lengthen my legs and maybe lengthen my stirrups, bringing my legs back more as I have them too far forward. Could take a long time to train to do that. I asked my coach if she could show me how to get Coopers hind legs to come up under him and she said that is one of the lessons that we will be working on this set. Cooper is getting stronger on his topline, neck, as we move along with the trotting and jogging and soon he will be able to do that hind end collection (is that what it is called?).
I will be practicing this zig zagging serpentine maneuver as much as I can next time I go to the barn