Australian Brumby Challenge ©
Unfortunately at the start of this week Ariat and I came to blows where I lost my patience with him and destroyed some of his confidence, so for the beginning of the week I spent time making it up to him by just running through the basic training he knows. I was fortunate enough to build the confidence he lost back up and from there on we had an amazing week.
I’ve slowly accustomed Ariat to the sound and feel of his rug, I hung it on the fence of his yard so he could approach it at his own time, then I moved it around, flipped it inside out, simply made as much noise and movement with it to teach him that there was nothing to fear. It took me two weeks but I was finally able to get the rug on Ariat, he listened and responded extremely well, he even stayed relaxed and didn’t go tense like he used to.
Like I mentioned in my last weekly update I’ve been preparing Ariat to attempt a canter but due to our blow we had I slowed that aspect of our training down. We were able to work on our extended trots and coming back to a relaxed trot which Ariat has perfected and does like a pro now. We have even started working in the round yard as it was ripped up and levelled back out, surprisingly Ariat worked really well in the round yard for his first time as in previous weeks he grazed in the round yard cleaning up the grass so I thought he might have challenged me a bit but he behaved perfectly and completed everything that was asked of him.
In previous weeks I only rode Ariat once or twice but this week I spent majority of our time together riding. I started off bareback like usual mounting and dismounting from both sides, doing lateral flexion, backing up, disengaging his hind quarters, doing front leg cross overs, changing directions by using my legs to manoeuvre his hind quarters and working with some obstacles. I also continued my work with Ariat and the saddle getting him used to it by rocking the saddle, swinging the stirrups, putting weight in the stirrups with my foot and lifting myself up against the saddle. Ariat adjusted to this so well that for the first time I got into the saddle, he was stiff at first but once we completed lateral flexion and a few other things he relaxed and we had an amazing ride. To finish our week up I tacked Ariat up, did our saddle preparations and then mounted. I started off in his yard going through his basic training, then when I believed he was ready for the first time we went for a ride outside his yard. He was very alert to his surroundings and a little distracted but worked extremely well through the bending and trotting poles once he accustomed to being ridden outside.