Calm and centered.
Practicing the yo-yo game.
I've continued working with Opal on backing out of and coming into my space. We've been working with this mostly on lead, but sometimes at liberty, like when I'd like her to come forward with me while I'm setting up poles for us to work on.
Opal's pasture mate Satin decided to join us in the arena one day to play. She would go off and roll, walk around, then come into where Opal was and play the yo-yo game along with her. Both mares enjoyed the game.
Buddies playing together.
I brought my little speakers into the arena today to ride to some music with Opal. Some horses like a type of music, others prefer one artist over another, I know one who doesn't care for higher toned music, but I'm not sure where Opal stands. Not knowing what she liked, I stuck my iPod on shuffle. We didn't get through lots of songs today, but at least she liked Collective Soul, which is great because they sing the song that inspired her name, Precious Declaration. I'm sure I'll be riding to more music the next few rides.
The importance of riding calm, centered, and proper equitation. Usually I need to send energy to Opal to get her moving. While riding near sunset today, the neighbors were out throwing balls for their dogs to run and chase after. Shadows and moving at sunset, running near you, and you can't see what they are, Opal spooked. She did a 360 to the left, a real fast spin and came to a halt once I said "ho". I talked to her, spent some time with her standing there looking at the dogs so she could see they would not hurt her. She calmed right down.
Now, raising my voice at her and shouting "HO" could have made her more nervous. "Oh my, Mom's scared, it MUST be a really scary thing over there, run away!" If I had been leaning forward, or off to one side or another, I might have been in the dirt. Being relaxed and centered in the saddle kept me in the saddle and on her back. I'm not worried about hitting the ground, but if I ride correctly and balanced, I'm less likely to end up looking up at my horse.
12 week challenge
Hours logged this week: 5
Total hours: 20 (half way there)