My awesomeness started this morning with Pilgrim. After several days of lunging, hill work and strengthening I decided it was way overdue to get back in the saddle. Thanks to Insanity I am now extremely sore all over and wearing a knee brace, but despite that I hopped in the saddle ready to work. After a sketchy start, where Pilgrim was pretty sure there was a Quarter Horse eating monster was hiding in the woods behind the arena, we were able to really get to work. I made him work through his bit acceptance issues, every time he thought about bracing, small 10 meter circles, lots of leg pushing him forward, closing my fingers....and ta da!!! Back on the bit he went. After a few rounds of this at the walk I asked him to work on 20 meter trot circles. Amazingly he actually had correct bend in the circle and stayed soft and round. I'm so proud! We kept it short, only 20 minutes, but a very valuable 20 minutes.
Several of my students are on spring break, so I had lessons after Pilgrim. One of my students parents informed me they are officially horse shopping! Yeah!!! So exciting! After morning lessons I managed to squeeze in a training ride on Lulu. Major Breakthrough! She actually figured out that when I ask for a jog she doesn't have to trot as fast as she can, she actually went into a jog....and held it! She is also learning that I am not going to ride on her mouth as she apparently has been use to, and has starting settling into a really nice level headset. She is going beautifully on a loose rein and is also finally realized that when I apply leg it doesn't always mean go faster. She is learning so fast and going to make a really nice horse....and only 4 years old too. I need to increase her weight and strength (I'd like to see a bit more shoulder and butt) before I start cantering her under saddle, but I can't wait to see how she progresses.
My afternoon was filled with lessons. I had enough of a break to let Faith ride for a bit as well. Chip and her worked some things out and he finally is picking up his right lead consistently with her! Too slick in the field to jump but they did a little work with cavalleties and had a good ride. All in all, a good day all around!