Lesson with Avery today. Hmm where to start. I spent an hour on line before she came. Wanted to be ready. For everything!
Started out showing Avery the new pedestal. And interestingly I had never played with Cici at the pedestal when she was tacked up. For her things were different. She just stood in front of it. Quietly. No pawing. Nothing! Avery told me to play porcupine game with lead - steady pressure - pulling her toward me on the other side of the pedestal. Ah ha. A missing piece. I've been waiting to Cici to figure it out. I mean she figured out how to paw it. And now everything else in the ring. But she never figured out the stepping up.
The challenge for me was porcupine her nose and manage with driving game her sides. Whenever she drifted one way or the other I needed to keep her straight. Comfort, safe place was standing straight to the pedestal.
Then next challenge was to release on her slightest try, slightest shift of weight forward. The pedestal is small. I thought it would be easier for her. But after a while, Avery laughing said let me show you. And she got Cici thinking quickly about the comfort spot. But when she lifted her foot, it was too easy for her to just walk over the pedestal.
Dragged out M. humugeous one from the corner and Avery played with Cici on that one. She again played porcupine game as a support on Cici's leg - savvy string around foot and steady pressure to help her lift her foot up on the T A L L pedestal. All the while maintaining steady pressure on the lead. Before too long Cici stepped up!!!! First with one foot and then both front feet! Yippee! Hope I can continue this with her. Avery suggested that once she is offering on the large one to bring out the small pedestal.
Next played circling game. Saw that the pedestal work had taken Cici way outside her comfort zone and she was worried. Her trot was fast and her canter turned into a gallop. Avery voiced that I needed to be more particular with her gaits. When I ask for trot I need to correct Cici when she goes to canter. Hmmm yup I've been careless with this. Maybe inattentive is a better word. No I've just not been particular.
Finally got a nice trot on both directions. Then Avery had me play friendly game swinging the carrot stick savvy string back and forth over my head while Cici was out on the circle. She was not a happy camper. Ask her to come in to me pulling on the rope zone 1 while backing away toward her zone 5. At first felt like rubbing my stomach while patting my head. The purpose is to have Cici come in to me - quickly. Safety with me. Avery said that when she spooked on the circle I should be able to slap the string on the ground and she would run into me.
Oh and whenever there was any slack in the line to shorten my hold and keep slapping the string and keep backing away and keep moving toward her hindend. Wow. Cici sure can run. Around and around and around. And around and around. Don't think I could have done this without Avery coaching me from the sidelines. When Cici finally came in she was blowing! Hard! And I noticed that yes some of it was physical and most definitely some was emotional.
Moving to the next level of our relationship. Well this is what I want to do. Been feeling so stagnant. What next? Well I found out today! And I made arrangements to continue with monthly lessons.
Even rode. Cici was exhausted and played stick to the rail perfectly LOL. Trotted a bit. And this time Avery suggested I back her when she stops trotting after a few strides. And then immediately go back to the trot. Hmmm. Sure has both Cici and my minds spinning. So much to think about. So much to play with. Can't wait!!!!
Decisions, part 2
3 hours ago