Barbara had set out 4 poles for the person before me and she suggested I try the patterns with PJ to see if I could get him motivated. It would be something for him to think about and it involved precision. Both are easier to explain with pictures but here’s a brief description of each exercise’s purpose.
1. Turn on the forehand.
The first exercise involved a lot of turns on the forehand- all but one in the same direction. It taught me to be able to move PJ’s shoulders independent of the rest of him. It also teaches PJ to listen to me because for the turn on the forehand you only want 2-3 steps. First we went to the right and then to the left.
2. Trot tight turns
Performed at the trot we did a lot of loops. The goal was to collect him so he had to weight his hind end to make the small turns and then send him forward to go over the poles. Like doing half-halts and go forwards around the ring but with poles, to assist PJ and me in getting it right. Some turns were tighter than others because of where the walls were. If he didn’t sit behind, we couldn’t make the turn. It was hard not to want to go to my hands to make the turn.
By the end of my lesson, PJ was going pretty well, so I think these exercises helped us.