The unspoiled world of senior cobs, David and Master Dibble

Location: United Kingdom

Friday, September 18, 2009

Pre-holiday schooling

Thursday, September 17, 2009

600 posts and our check-ups

I've just noticed: this seems to be my 600th posting on Cobmalian. Who'd have thought it? English cobs don't get to be cobs of note, or whatever it's called, since we aren't cool or conversant with the internet or motor bikes or frilly designer whatnots and all the stuff beloved of twenty-something blogmeisters, so hooray for Dibby and me. And back to cob-business: Halena visited us this afternoon for our six monthly physio check-up.

It was my turn first. I was walked and trotted up and Halena was pleased with my progress. She said my pelvis was much more level and only felt some slight tension behind the saddle on my right side.

Dad has to continue to exercise as before, use the TENs machine and continue with regular massage. That was very satisfactory.

Dad had to go and collect Dibby from the field since he had been playing a game and didn't want to come in whilst Cricket was still out. He succumbed to a carrot.

Halena was pleased with Dibby too. His back muscles have improved and he doesn't have such tight lumbars and weak thoracic muscles any more. His left side is stiffer and the left of his neck is slightly more tense, so Dad has to do more massage for him too.

Overall Halena was pleased and says that we can go through to our next check up in six months.

We celebrated this with an apple and our teas. Cobs don't need much excuse.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Accentuating positives

Another dry but windy day out in the field. Dad took me into the school after five. Florian was being lunged at the other end of the arena, but I concentrated on what I was doing, which pleased Dad very much.

We worked throughout on softening and rounding and treated the session like the warm up before a test with stretching leading on to flexions, transitions and lateral work and getting on the bit gently.

Dad tried to maintain the correct position in walk and trot, to apply his leg instead of keeping it on too long and to make the rein aids much less pronounced. He was happy with my response and that I went on the bit more quickly. We still have to work hard on keeping my nose in and head on the vertical, since it pops out to 45 degrees at every opportunity. Still, it was a constructive session and we came in for grooming and tea after forty minutes or so.

Both Dads then went to collect the lorry after its protracted plating. Anyway, our schooling was positive, which cobs always like to accentuate.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Silver lining

Both Dads were busy and so Dibby and I enjoyed another quiet day off in the field - breezy but dry. Cobs appreciate a silver lining

Monday, September 14, 2009

Summer's end

We started the week grazing au naturel without fly sheets or rugs. I just wore my fly mask to see out what feels like the last few days of what used to be called summer.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Sunday school

Although our lesson was cancelled, we went into the school at our usual ten 'o clock.
We shared with Harry and then Leah, who were having lessons with Ken.
We practised our usual things -starting long and stretchy then shortening and going into rounding and softening mode with flexions and inside leg into outside hand.
We added some leg-yield, shoulder-in and flexions with lots of transitions between halt, trot and canter.
We added trot and a little canter and rein-back. Dad was pleased that I went on the bit much quicker and stayed round in trot quite well.
I did resist somewhat in rein-back, but overall was very civil. Dad thinks that to reduce resistance, he needs to make rein-back lower key. Overall, our Sunday school hadn't been as much value as a lesson, but had been useful practice. We cooled down with stretching on a long rein in walk and trot and came in after forty minutes or so
After a hose down, apple and minties, I joined Dibby in the field in just my face mask.
We came in for grooming and tea after four.
Being civil on a Sunday is quite a cob thing.

Saturday, September 12, 2009


With Ken's clinic continuing, Dad decided we could enjoy a day off during a weekend of Indian summer. We came in for grooming and tea at about 4.30. Cobs like a holiday.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Bath time

The sunny weather continued.

Dad took me into the school at ten whilst Dibby went on a hack with Other Dad. As we began, Leah was having a lesson with Ken and Florian was being schooled for his next competition. The school had just been levelled.

We worked on softening and roundness to begin - lots of flexions, transitions, leg-yield and shoulder-in. We trotted and went up to canter on both reins and tried to vary pace and use half halts.

We schooled for about an hour and came in. I was hosed down and then given a shampoo and had my tail washed. Dad gave me some mints and an apple and put me out to dry in just my fly mask.

Dibby joined me on his return. He was very clammy and also enjoyed a cool hose down. We both need a clip in this warm weather.

We came in at five after a long afternoon out for grooming and tea. Cobs do enjoy a bath on a warm day.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Ready to go out

Wednesday, September 09, 2009


Out in the field all day. It was warm and breezy and we went out in our fly rugs. I wore my blue fringe too.

Dad took me in the school at five. We shared with Honey and Gem having a lesson. The surface was deep and we stuck to walk and trot. We worked on a twenty metre circle and larger oblong with flexions to soften, halts, leg yield, shoulder -in and fore and transitions to halt, walk and trot.

We added some rein back and lots of trotting. Dad worked on inside leg to outside rein and his own position - uprightness, breathing, sitting on seat bones, heels down, leg back, hands together and in front just on the top of my breast plate. He tried to maintain a steady contact without pulling and to keep his lower leg still and to take his leg off so I could sustain trot without getting completely numb on my sides. We did some reasonable trot and finished off on a long rein.

We came in to be hosed down and given tea. I don't want to wish the summer away but some rain might help me by firming the surface. Dad tries to ride me uphill with impulsion but we still seem to struggle more than most. Perhaps it's a cob thing: fortunately Dad and I can be patient.

Tuesday, September 08, 2009


A restful day off out in the field. Dibby and I came in late-ish at 4.30 to be groomed and given a massage. I also had half an hour of the tens machine before tea. It only fell off once. Dad was pleased that my pelvis and hind quarters seemed level. Cobs quite like a relaxing massage.

Monday, September 07, 2009

Another day...

After all the excitement of yesterday's party, we had a quiet day out in the field without rugs. Dibby and I enjoyed a jolly mutual groom as soon as we went out.

It was a sunny and warm afternoon with quite a few flies, so we may have our fly rugs on tomorrow.

In yesterday's competition we went on first in the Introductory A walk and trot. The warm-up area was quite busy beforehand with five or six horses, some little rears and spinning, so it was a bit tense.

We got through our test with this background and came second but Dad thought it would be difficult for me to canter with so much liveliness going on next to the arena and so we withdrew. Hopefully we can have a try at Prelim 1 or 18 elsewhere in the near future. Since we had practised hard, we were disappointed not even to attempt the prelim test, but Dad thought it was better to finish yesterday on a relatively positive note and build on it next time.

Today, Dad took me in the school at four hoping to run through Prelim 1 since the arena was left up from yesterday - with flowers, but we found it a bit deep and will leave cantering until it has been levelled or had some rain.

We worked on walk and trot with lots of transitions and lateral work. We did the exercise where we alternate sitting and rising trot and nearly walk but accelerate just before. Dad was pleased with my trot tonight, I flexed both ways and kept the correct bend much better. We finished with some walk and trot on a long rein with me stretching down properly.

I enjoyed a cool hose down, an apple and my tea. Cobs really enjoy a party, but also believe in making their own decisions and living to fight another day.

Sunday, September 06, 2009

Intro A at Netherwood Dressage

Saturday, September 05, 2009

Running through tests