Keil Bay has been having a right hind glitch this week - a couple of "hitches" at the trot on Sunday and Monday - so our work has been light. I panic a little when he's off, but determined to ride through it, focusing on the things we could do together that would keep him moving and using his back and hind quarters without stress.
Yesterday we were doing lots of walk with intermittent trot transitions. My focus was my own position, keeping him in a very forward gait, and trying to make those transitions smooth and effective.
We came around the short end of the arena at a trot and suddenly something clicked with my seat and his movement. I was sitting the trot about as good as I ever have, and I'm not sure what else I was doing, but suddenly the trot became very very collected, he went on the bit perfectly, and we trotted the entire long side in this amazing symphony of horse and rider at collection. At one point it almost felt like we were slowing to piaffe, nothing I have ever done before. (piaffe is a trot that is virtually in place, the collection is so complete)
I have no idea where this came from. I tried to repeat it again later in the ride, but couldn't get it. It's the first time I've ever ridden that kind of movement on any horse - leave it to Keil Bay to have an off week and yet throw in something so incredible in the midst of it.
It was control and grace and harmony woven into forward motion and balance and stillness. Such a gift in the midst of an otherwise very hectic week.