Trainer R came out as we were finishing up and said that she feels he is ready for the next step in his training program. This mostly translates to just a slight increase in what we ask him for and being slightly more discerning in what we accept.
And a smidge more negative feedback when he does something wrong. Basically, he is ready for a bit more pressure and a bit more discipline.
On the discipline side this mostly applies to the rooting...you know I hesitate to even call it rooting because he really just sort of leans on your hands but R says it is time to really bump him back up when he does that. Not like we will be floating his teeth but just really insisting he doesn't lay on you.
She also mentioned that going right - his weaker way - he tends to throw off his rider's balance same and sort of push you to the left as you post. She plans to investigate why that is more, but he is probably just moving somewhat crooked that way. So we will work on that.
This tied in to our lesson Saturday where we have achieved massively obvious one sidedness. Going left, we look hella good. People ooh and ahh. Going right we are pretty remedial. People (ahem trainers) cringe. OK not really, but we both need to get stronger and straighter and find a rhythm.
It is my bad way too, my right shoulder has had issues since I was a teenager so my crookedness exacerbates his.
But we still had a lovely canter and did some trot poles. On Sunday he had a trainer ride and got to jump. R2 had to ride her ass off as Odin LOVES jumping and feels that jump height is a suggestion only.
First he leaped the poles, then he leaped the cross rail, then he finally settled in. After the first time (leap and flail) he did canter away nicely and pays a lot of attention to his leads. He mostly lands right, going either way, and really wants to swap to left. R2 prefers the trot change for now since paying attention to all 4 legs for more than 30 seconds still poses a challenge but she believes Odie is going to have beautiful auto changes soon.
|From his test ride, he got in awkwardly to his and still leaped it|
And hopefully they will have less squealing (what is life without sound effects??). Although I don't know if I want that to go away, I find it infinitely charming that he makes dolphin squeals when he is proud of himself or is doing something he finds difficult. Personality for days!
And on that note, I have a quick work trip to Europe - leaving tomorrow and coming back Friday.