Australian Brumby Challenge ©
At the conclusion of last week I gave Ariat from Friday afternoon to Sunday off. On Monday once I got back from Geelong Ariat and I got back into our training, though he set me up with a few challenges, he was being flighty, he wasn’t concentrating and was nervous about the smallest of things. Due to these challenges I simply took Ariat back to the basics by doing lateral flexion, front leg cross overs, disengaging the hind quarters and lunging him. By Our second session of the day I had my thinking brumby back.
Once I was happy that Ariat was thinking instead of reacting we continued on with our training under saddle. To change things up a little instead of getting on him and going I mounted from the near side, sat there for a minute and then dismounted to the off side. I then repeated this on the opposite side. I was really impressed with how he handled this, he stood perfectly still and stayed relaxed the entire time. Later in the week I did another riding session with him where I began asking him to side pass out towards the fence line, teaching him to utilise his space instead of cutting corners, we also worked on changing directions. To finish off our ride I asked for a trot, compared to the last time he immediately knew what was being asked of him and transitioned extremely well and kept the trot going. I was so impressed with how amazingly he’d done.
For the rest of the week I brought back our float loading lessons, at first he was a bit reluctant but with a little encouragement he loaded on both the right and left hand side and showed immense improvement.
One thing that happened this week was that Ariat tried to give me a heart attack… Like usual I put him out in his day yard to graze and roll. This day I’d decided to clean his water barrel from his shed and did so in his view so I wouldn’t scare him, as I was cleaning his drum I heard the sound of hooves running, I looked up and all I saw was Ariat running for his fence, I thought this is it I’ll need the vet. Oh but no, Ariat cleared his day yard fence which sits at exactly a meter in height and he cleared it with ease (Ariat usually trips over all my jumps so I was very surprised). At this stage I was panicking thinking F#@k my brumby is out, like every horse person in this scenario all bad outcomes came flooding into my thoughts. I stopped and pulled myself together, calmly talked to Ariat, picked some grass and he walked straight up to me. I was so upset yet proud of him as he could’ve ran off but instead chose to come to me, I straight away put him back into his shed as that was enough excitement for one day.