Saturday, 26 June 2010

Get Set, Go Shinobi!

Yeah, PC is working and I have plenty to blog!

20 June 2010

I’v mentioned briefly Shinobi’s RBI tendencies when carrying a rider. As soon as your back pockets touch his back, he plants his feet, switches off, and does not move.
Its only been recently that iv felt savvy enough to tackle the issues he has with being under saddle and I hope today proved to him that im becoming the partner he needs me to be.

Today we literally took our first steps in overcoming this confidence issue Shinobi has and we went trotting around the field :) Okay so nothing technical, nothing fancy, nothing that to most people is even worth a second look, but I don’t care what it wasn’t, I care that for the first time since I can remember Shinobi was carrying me with confidence :)

Iv played with him on and off but in the recent weeks we’ve stuck to it. During each online play Shinobi’s confidence and enthusiasm has been flourishing. He’s been offering nippy little trots when playing with patterns, and when drawing him in and just generally being a little star :)

When it came to hopping on I allowed him to graze for a while then gathered the reins and started with a passenger lesson, to my surprise he began pawing the floor! A left brain introvert tantrum to let me know he want to continue stuffing his face!

“Expect a lot, Except a little and Reward the slightest try”
With those words in mind I continued to apply pressure and he gave me a step,


So I quite with the pressure, rubbed him, allowed him to graze and then asked again, we repeated with no real problems, allowing him one mouthful of grass per step, needless to say we were then able to build this up to walking a couple of dozen steps to different obstacles.
When ever id attempted this previously I tried steering right form the off and often too sharply so he’d stop, duh me, didn’t realise I was only going and punishing for stepping forwards!

This time steering came later :)

And then came the trot! a little pressure with the legs and he was off, ears forward and focused on the barrel (rest point) ahead. Go Shinobi and Go Parelli, Ye-Hah!

Play On, Em x

Tuesday, 15 June 2010

Appriciating the little thing

For the past week iv been horse sitting for a friend and so have accumalted a ruther 3 to my original herd of 4, needless to say mine have not had the time and attention spent on them that they deserve, and my guys have been telling me so in there own subtle little ways.

Having a spare half an hour yesterday evening i decided to spend some Undermanding Time with Andy, i haltered him and took away to the corral to graze leaving the rest of my guys at the gate, all looking a little disappointed that they were not getting the chance to come out and play. I promised another day.
As the sun set behind the vally casting ribbons of light through the woods and onto the fields it felt like time had stopped, i could take in the familiar smell of his mane and how soft his coat felt to touch. Time did not stop for long and before i new it it was time to leave, i begrudgingly put Andy back in the field.

It seems despite the lack of time we had shared together the evening previous Andy appriciated it greatly non the less. Andy left his pasture mates and the fresh grass i had given them to come and spent a quiet minuet with me, him being a LBI i was delighted and somewhat humbled! He stood with me for a good 15 mins, letting me scrath his ears and face and then moving around me so i could scratch his back and dock, then falling asleep, and continued to follow me up the field away from his pasture friends and grass.

Granted we've not spent anytime playing games and learning new patterns but we're contining to learn the language even through the little things :)

Play on, Em x

Saturday, 12 June 2010

Saddling Shinobi with Savvy!

Okay. So here's some background info on Shinobi, he's a 15hh Irish Cob about 7 years old, iv had him for roughly two years, he's predominantly a LBI but has some RBI tendenceys when riding. I was able to ride Shinobi a few times when i first got him (these were my pre parelli days) but he soon ran out of go, once i was on his back he would not move a milimetre and Saddling was probably only about a 6 out of 10, he would not stand still and would try to bite me when i tried to tighten the girth. It wasnt long before this transpired onto the ground and i was unable to lead him anywhere, i could lean forward with all my body weight hanging off the lead rope and he wouldnt budge!
Since starting the Parelli Programme not quite 2 years ago i have avoided playing with Shinobi, i just didnt feel savvy enough to tackle his issues in the saddle, so for the past two years my section c has been teaching me the ways of natural horsemanship and this past month or so i'v finaly got down to it!

We've been playing with "Go with confidence" and he has blossomed. Driving from here, there and everywhere from zones 3/4 is easy peasy and he's now offering some really nippy trotts, figure of 8's from the same zones and circles have all been going awsome. Leading? No need for ropes and halters anymore :D

Today was going to be different, today i was going to saddle him and play. He was a wonder pony! He stood still and gave the saddle a good sniff before i popped it on and when it came to cinching he turned, had a sniff then started licking me! That just pretty much blew my mind!
We did our thing with a squeaky saddle and flapping fenders and it was great fun! He began offering figure of 8's at a trott, (this was only our 2 attempt at them!) he grasped falling leaf and the S patters at a trott all in about 2 secs and before i new it i had a LBE! Sheesh!

Obviously it wasnt with out its challenges, a LBI in a field of knee high grass, you can imagine!? Which i think is why today has given me such a boost, i feel savvy and my emotional fitness is growing- a huge rarity!

I can see a light at the end of the tunnel and im in no hurry to get there, especialy if the rest of the jounrney is going to be this much fun!

Play on, Em x