The unspoiled world of senior cobs, David and Master Dibble

Location: United Kingdom

Sunday, April 29, 2007

A little praise

Sunday morning was dry and warm again. Dad came at 9.15 and tacked me up in readiness for a private lesson with Liz at 10.30.

Liz had brought with her a straight bar bit to try. I was well-behaved and stood still as the bit was changed, whilst I was wearing my bridle.

We worked at the top end of the school where a large arena had been laid out. Shortly after we started, another livery choose this moment to adjust the fencing of a paddock near the school and release her horse which started some others charging around. This gave me an interesting distraction, but Dad eventually regained my attention and concentration. He was pleased that I didn't succumb to temptation to have a play too.

We worked in walk and trot on both reins with leg-yield and shoulder-in to gain roundness. The trot needed to be to be slower with Dad's legs stiller. We concentrated on straightness, softening my neck and jaw with gentle flexions and position of leg and hands. Liz was pleased Dad's hands were closer together and not pulling to the side. He was trying to steer more with the leg and encouraging me to get my legs under me more to go forward and gain roundness.

We practised elements of Prelim 17, which we hope to try by the end on next month. This included canter both ways, which showed improvement. Dad was encouraged to sit up, not to lean forward and put his hands forward.

We will persevere with the straight bit for a while and concentrate on consistent roundness in walk and trot and a regular canter. We have lots of homework: circles on both reins leg-yielding in and out to promote roundness and stop falling-in, leg-yield using both legs to gain impulsion and the left or right to push in the appropriate direction, cantering sitting up with hands forward and more effort to get my hind legs under me. Despite the initial distraction, Liz and Dad were pleased with the session, which showed some progress. I enjoyed an apple and hose-down afterwards.

I was put out to graze in my fly mask whilst Dibby hacked and joined me a little later. We came in at 4.30 to be groomed and given tea. I liked my lesson; like people, cobs enjoy a little praise.


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