The first week of Sierra's training went as well as can be expected. I didn't ride her that week; I wanted to give the trainer a fair shot before I got on and possibly messed up anything. The first order of business was to get Sierra to drop her head and soften. She tends to carry her head high and her neck always seems tense. I am amazed at what a difference it makes when her head is down and relaxed.
Sierra is a very stubborn mare when it comes to working (working = burning calories). She will definitely argue to see if you will give up but if you stick with her she gives up fairly easy and learns really quickly. Now with just the slightest cue Sierra lowers her head. I think she has figured out that it's less work and more relaxing with her head down.
Sierra is also losing a little bit of weight. She was not really obese but she was definitely carrying some extra pounds. If you have read my other blogs about Sierra, you may remember that she is a Percheron and Morgan cross. She definitely has the hips of the Percheron. She has a lot of "hip action" when she walks. With the little bit of weight loss and her carrying her head a little lower she is much smoother to ride now. Carrying her head lower has also slowed her down a little bit.
I take one lesson on Sierra each week to see what she has learned and I try to ride her at least one other time during the week. I was so excited to see the changes in her and how they helped me change the way I ride. I have always been fairly confident when riding Sierra but each time I get on her now my confidence increases.
Sierra had been with the trainer for only 5 days and I could already tell a major difference. My mare is smart!!!
Be safe, have fun, and ride on... (Don't forget to vote if you enjoyed my blog.)