Rode Cici today. Took lots of time with her in her paddock, then played all the games and then some in the indoor. Backing is coming along. I played yo-yo and got a nice lick and chew. Figure 8 around the cones. Working on developing this at the trot. Sideways - at one point I was driving from zone 3 and heading toward the wall. She turned to face the wall and then sideways the length! Her hindend is lagging a bit but nice cross stepping.
When I got on her she was quiet and focused. Quickly licked and chewed and rode with loose rein around the ring. I didn't do much of anything and she stayed on the rail and walked quietly. Not big so it was very comfortable for me. When I asked for a halt after a little while it was there and again a quick lick and chew.
This is the first ride of Margaret's 21. Will keep track and see how things progress.
An observation about the circling game. I am coming to realize that the more I ask her to do the more I get her listening. So I can let her go around 4 or 5 times and then ask for change of direction. Change of gait to canter. Today she held the canter almost the entire circle. And it was correct lead. But I need to work her for a while. Longer than I think I was doing.
Before I was afraid to do too much because then she would become unconfident. And then I would become unconfident. But both of us growing. Our emotional fitness is developing. Oh she will still get a bit frantic out on the line but I can bring her back.
Today I noticed that she was a bit spooking at the carrot stick. Her in place startles. I've been using it more with backing and sideways and to get her out on the circle. So worked a while on friendly vs intention. Will need to keep this going. I thought hmm haven't done anything with the tarp, if she is a bit spooky with carrot stick - but tarp was a total none issue. How interesting. My goal is for the carrot stick/string to be a non issue.
This is fun. Have some tools and can use them. Not all the answers but getting the questions. Who knows what tomorrow will bring.