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Wizard Sessions 425, 426, 427, 428: Two Feet Off the Ground

December 3, 2012

Wizard works in long lines

Friday, 11/30/12

In the past, I’ve done some long line work with Wizard, but it was always nuts-and-bolts type work. Basically, it was me trying to figure out how to do it and how to keep myself from getting spun around or any of the other many awkward things that can happen when attached to a 1,000-pound creature by two pieces of cotton webbing.

But on Friday, I actually got a taste of the work part of long line work. We have come along for enough with our basics to start actually doing some schooling. We worked with three dressage cones, and did a little weaving pattern around them. We also walked over two ground poles and were able to do it in a straight line (!). This stuff is fun!

So we don’t exactly look like this, but it sure is good training for both of us…

Saturday, 12/1/12

Before our session, the farrier did Wizard’s feet. Interestingly, Wizard is sounder on his right front, but his heel looks lower and underrun. The farrier decided to try a wedge pad. I was leery of putting a wedge on him, but if it is not working out, my farrier is a phone call away and can come out and make changes. So far, he’s moving out nicely on it.

Wedge rim pad, right front

We did a repeat session from Friday’s long line work, plus a little added trotting in hand. That’s not much of a workout for Wizard, but great exercise for me- whew! He actually seems to enjoy it. I need to get my hands on some longe lines to go a little longer with it- my long lines are fairly short and I have to run around like a nut during the trot work. He chews a lot on the bit just like he does under saddle, but he looks relaxed- I think the chewing is some processing/nerves as he is learning something new. We’re getting the hang of a little bending, and just the verrrry beginning of a shoulder in when we really have ourselves together.

Sunday, 12/2/12

Kris and Sunny went out for a walk with me and Wizard in the park. We were out for about an hour, walking through some fields and down to the lake. It felt great to get out and do some walking. With all the hunting, we’ve been sticking to the roads and to the Horse Park when we go out, but since Sunday is bow hunters only, we felt safer going out. We did not see any hunters at all, unlike last week.

After our walk, I did some long line work with Wizard in the outdoor arena. The ring is slowly drying out, and we have more room to work. After warming up at a walk, we did a little trot work on the long lines, working on the outside rein and trying to get a bit of a bend. Wizard seemed pretty happy in his work. After our long line session, I longed him for a few rotations in each direction in side reins. Between the walk in the woods and the long lining session, we were out for a while, but it was very low impact work.

Monday, 12/3/12

Before work, I enjoyed the unseasonably warm weather (60s) and did a long lining session with Wizard in the outdoor arena. It rained the night before, so the arena was a little sloppier than it was on Sunday, so we kept our session to a walk with just a little trot work. We walked up and down the long side of the arena, turning a keyhole shape at each end and reversing direction. We zigzagged between the dressage cones and walked over the ground poles. At the end of our session, I put him on the longe line with no side reins and let him to a very loose trot, just for about 4 rotations in each direction.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. December 4, 2012 8:30 am

    I have been trying to teach my pony to piaffe… We are so so so so darn close I can feel it. He is definitely understanding to collect himself onto his haunches. I’m doing it it hand, of course, and he is beginning to do a lovely, very controlled, very polite rear (or should I call it a Levade?). He *almost* trotted a holding step the last session, so I guess it’s going the right direction. At least this video shows I’m not the only one accidentally getting rearing when I want piaffe.. lol. I really don’t want him learning to rear, but I don’t think it will turn ugly with him, he knows when he’s doing his tricks or not. I hope….

  2. December 4, 2012 8:49 am

    I love to long rein Ollie. He’s comfortable with it and it helps us to build up his back muscles without the added weight of me in the saddle. Thankfully I don’t really need a longe whip to make him go. Ollie has a lot of go… just voice commands works. The whole two long reins and a whip thing while going all over the arena can be a challenge in not getting tangled up. We love to get fancy with trotting figure eights and serpentines. I use it many times as our warm up since it warms up both of us and then his back is loose by the time I get on him.

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