Sunday, March 14, 2010

Circling Game

Avery had to cancel today, flooded basement and horses took down part of the fencing. Just as well. It been raining, hence her flooded basement, and windy, and more hard rain. The indoor was quite noisy. Understatement.

I played with Cici - driving from Zone 3, stopping when I stop. Getting more precise in my expectations. I can see what Avery was saying about extra steps. Also getting her to trot off with me. Cici gets so focused. She seems to forget she can breath I think.

There was another horse in the indoor while we were doing this. Then I started to play with circling and the other horse left. So at first Cici had a hard time focusing on me. Where was Bella? what was that noise? Who is on the other side of the door? All sorts of distractions that were not an issue when we were playing Driving game. Hmmm how interesting.

On the circle she is ready to go. Either direction. I'm just asking for a back up and she is leaving - Right? Left? I'm off? Had to slow things down. Let her think. Get her to look at me with both eyes. Okay now we can send.

Out on the circle where she has her responsibilities she begins to get either unconfident or confident and dominant. And pulls and goes fast. I ask for change of direction. Get dolphining when she changes direction. Lots of attitude. Then she looks outside the circle and gets unconfident. Can't look at me. Starts to go fast. Change of direction becomes a struggle and challenge. I hear Avery in my mind saying shut that door. I shorten the rope and ask again for change of direction. And get it with attitude. Or is it unconfidence?

Working with me at her side she is developing her confidence. But out at the end of the 22 - that is a whole new place for her to be. By herself as she perceives it. Just need to keep at it and slowly build her confidence.

Do enough changes of direction, less than 1/2 a circle before changing. More and she is gone. At that level she starts to get unconfident and I change and she has to think. Slowly - well lots of changes of directions fast - she is staying with me longer and longer. Her confidence is building as she feels I'm there with her. Funny how this works. And then I get a 1/2 circle of calm beautiful trot and disengage and she walks confidently to me. Stops. Licks and chews.


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