PJ was not being a good boy today when Barbara got on. All he wanted to do was lean on his left shoulder, which, of course, is a symptom of not pushing with his inside hind leg. Going to the left, when he fell with that shoulder and she picked up more outside rein because then he bulged to the outside, he slowed down, compounding the problem. To the right, if she didn’t have her inside leg on him the whole time, he just fell on that shoulder and off his hind end.
She spend longer than normal trying to get him to “get it”. Barbara admits that she’s out of shape, so most of the work was at the walk, but it’s amazing what she could do at the walk. It’s a talent of hers. But eventually she pooped out and handed the reins to me. She said she’s enjoying riding him and getting herself into shape, teaching him, and helping me. She feels it’s all in the basics and the rest will come.
I could tell yesterday that things were starting to go downhill but when I got on, PJ felt like he had a month or two ago. They symptoms were that I couldn’t turn left, he slowed down through the turns and wouldn’t go forward, and I lost the right rein going to the left. But the one major difference is that I felt more of the cause of these things – the falling on the right shoulder and really leaning on that left rein.
I was able to sort-of get him to stay together both directions. Mainly, we’d get it and then loose it and then get it again. I decided to quit when it started taking more effort on my part to get the same response from him – basically more leg to get him to go into my outside rein. I wasn’t sure if it was because he was getting tired and so was less responsive, or my legs were getting tired, so it only felt like I was using more leg. We were both sweaty when I got off, so I’m guessing it was a little bit of both.
I don’t think WoSW will be a good idea tomorrow. I think he either should have a day off or I should continue to work on what we did today. I’m just afraid that I won’t be able to feel it quite right and without Barbara there to guide me, I’ll let him fall back into this bad habit, which doesn’t help anything. I’ll see how I feel tomorrow, I’m still sore from my exertion at the gym.