Friday, November 03, 2017

28/7 + 57(needs more rides) = quick ride on the second day

Or, translated:

Our ride today happened at sunset and Keil Bay quickly went from 28 to about 4 years old, in the very best way, meaning he was simply and completely ready to go, very alert, bold, and sensitive to my leg in a way that would be beautifully perfect if I weren’t so out of riding shape!

As it is, I felt like I could ride the big trot he was chomping at the (bitless) bridle to do, but I fretted that if he spooked at that big trot I might not stick with him, so I kept my legs OFF and we did some 20m circles at the walk and then did walk/trot transitions at each dressage marker to give him a predictable pattern of coming down to the walk himself.

I stopped while things were going well.

I felt good in the saddle and he felt super at the walk and the trot. I wish I could speed up my own getting back into shape.

Thinking maybe the sunset rides are not the best idea for now! Exciting though to have him feeling so good and moving so well.


Calm, Forward, Straight said...

Val and I also had a long awaited ride yesterday. Bareback and tried a bitless rig for the first time. (!) I found a fairly advanced melanoma on his upper lip a few months ago, and am not sure if wearing a bit is bothersome. I think I need a resource for how to adjust the bitless bridle - basically where the noseband should rest. It was too beautiful not to ride - I adore this weather.

billie said...

Oh, hope he is okay! I am not sure what bitless bridle you have - I am using the Two Horse Tack sidepull on Keil as none of mine liked the ones that cross under the jaw and attach to the opposite rein, and the Micklem was good but not as easy to attach reins to as I liked. This one is very nice. I got leather instead of biothane and it is well made and fits nicely. Aside from not having the bit I think the thing Keil likes best is the freedom to open his jaw. When I do use a bit now, which is rare, I use it without the cavesson and he goes well that way too. I have this one fairly loose on his head and interestingly he creates a little foam even without the bit. I still use the reins as if they are attached to a bit - taking them up and letting them out carefully - which is I guess habit but it seems like everything works similarly with this bridle so our communication works the way it always did but he is visibly happy to have a freer mouth and head.

His noseband is about midway between the edge of his jaw and the top of the nostril. I put it a bit lower than is usual so it doesn’t sit on the front bone of the nose. The entire bridle is looser than, say, Pony Club would like, but we’re not riding through brush or trees so not worried about getting caught that way. My test is whether he will drop his head and put his own nose through the cavesson and he does that willingly, so I think the fit is okay for him! :) And the bridle doesn’t shift around if I open the rein to the side, which I think was happening with the Micklem some.

I wish the bridle came with the option to have the interior that touches his nose and poll padded with something soft like memory foam but he’s not really wearing the bridle for long periods of time so I figure as long as he goes well during our riding time it’s not a big deal.