shorter stirrups, signs of spring.

No time is wasted which that is spent in the saddle.

I cannot believe how excited I am to report that the weather seems to have broken, it is a balmy 60+ degrees here in beautiful Colorado, and Chance and I are moving along well. In our lesson the other day we did not get further than going over a pole on the ground, but he was unusually hyper and seemed to really not want to relax. Some of that might have been my fault because I shortened my stirrups and was really tense and uncomfortable. In other words, wow, I am out of shape! I was huffing and puffing in just a few canter circles. I thought I was working hard, but I think I just realized that I need to work harder and harder. We had a blast though, worked on getting him to relax and settle into jumping and such. The exercise we focused on was just getting him to relax and trot and canter the pole, while I kept a better contact with relaxed elbows. I have had really stiff hands so relaxing my elbows has become my biggest working point. It also helps me develop a following hand over the fences, therefore helping him to use himself better. I just have to remember that form to function, even within my own body is essential for my riding and his success.

Yesterday because of a huge test I was unable to ride, which was probably all the better because I was so very sore, and I think he might have been too. Today we rode for a while to step up what we worked on in the lesson. I started over a pole and increased it to a cavaletti and then a small crossrail. By focusing on just trotting those elements we were able to take all of them without a problem. We then moved on to a series of fences that were about 2’ maybe 2’3 and a small oxer, working on the same principles. He was an angel, a slightly tired angel I think. At our last fence I think he stepped on a rock and came up lame, so we ended there, but he quickly worked out of it and was fine after our grooming session. It did give me a slight heart attack.

Tomorrow Chance gets his feet done by a new farrier, which I am thrilled about.  Hopefully he will be able to work with us and get him a little more comfortable with lighter shoes. He also needs to have his whole foot brought back underneath himself, and a little less toe to decrease the resistance to his breakover. As I said, I am really excited about it, and I look forward to seeing if it helps his movement more. We also had a wonderful relaxing grooming session, he is starting to shed a little bit, which is so exciting! I cant wait for summer, even the thought of getting his summer coat is so exciting! I guess today I am just looking forward to the future, and all the promise that it brings. Chance is truly that, my Chance to achieve my goals.

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