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cowgirl.tough.93

Getting Back Into English..kind Of

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Hey everybody! First off I would like to say that I am so excited to be slowly crawling my way back into the english world. I have been around the horse city forms for a while but i think this might be my first post having anything to do with english riding in a long long time so I'd like to introduce myself. I havn't ridden english much since we moved my pony on to a new home with new kids and since I have focused on really doing well barrel racing and roping. I have been on my a couple of my friends horses off and on but recently have started schooling an english pony on a regular basis. Needless to say I am loving getting to go back to the basics.

Now about the pony.

He was started as a show pony but has been living in a pasture for at least a year. That is when a family at my previous barn bought him and hired me to tune him up for their girl to trail ride and eventually show. I have been taking everything slow and am just focusing on him being soft and balanced. Like I mentioned, going back to the basics ( walk, trot, halt, circles, and slight collection/lengthening) and he has been a super champ about all of it. I really noticed a difference in him last time I rode him and added trot poles to the center line. It seemed to help him hold his attention and give him something to work for( we were doing circles at the corners of the arena and when it felt soft and balanced would continue down the center line trying to hold that rhythm).

NOW....my question.

I know ponies normally need to have something to prevent them from getting bored and to not tire them out with the same drills over and over again. Does anyone have ideas of how to further continue his balancing act and keep him interested in what he is doing?

Thank you all input would be apriciated.

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If you can, get out on the trails - especially with hills. Good, long, slow walk & trot sets up those hills to engage the hindquarters and reinforce Forward. Until fitted up, just walk down the hills so as not to stress the hock/stifles too much. Seeing scenary go by is so much more entertaining for both of your brains, instead of round-n-round a ring.

Look into some of the Linda Tellington-Jones ground-work/pole-work, etc. videos. Great for building suppleness, spacial & hoof awareness.

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My POA is English and we are schooling similar. Stay off the rail as much as you can. Do random circles of different sizes, changes of direction on the diagonal or on a line, serpentines, figure 8's, etc. I like to add trot poles, maybe a cross rail. Incorporate transitions into the figures.

I also like to hack out and do some of the hand exercises posted by Chocomare.

Have fun!

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