Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Samantha Thorning with Aspen, (On Line, 45 mins) SUNDAY 4/22: Played OL with Emma and Aspen. Emma learned the proper way to send a horse on a circle and actually got her first laps of trot on the 12' line while passing the rope around her back. Aspen was a little confused and kept looking to me and trying to come to me while Emma was playing with her so I sat on the sand next to Emma so she could pass the rope over my head while she was playing the circling game and I could support a little with my stick when Aspen tried to come in. It was a great success! Emma learned more about each of the 7 games and is really getting the idea of winning the friendly game. It was a nice break for Aspen to do simple things with Emma and take a step back from all of my ambitious training goals.  Emma also rode Aspen for a while practicing her pushing passenger (squishy marshmallow) position as opposed to the "bouncy basketball" she usually is on top of the horse. She felt a lot safer and more connected to Aspen as a marshmallow compared to a basketball. She also learned the value of lateral flexion and practiced many emergency stops while learning the importance of keeping her center of gravity down (hands down, not up) when using her reins, so she can stay more balanced.

Samantha Thorning with Aspen, (On Line, 15 mins) Played on the FL today with some faster F8's and some jumps. I love how she's starting to really hone in on the jump once she gets that that is where I'm heading her to. Also getting some wonderful changes of direction on the circles.

Samantha Thorning with Aspen, (Freestyle, 30 mins) Rode for a bit trying to get more relaxation - she's getting kind of sassy while I'm on her so I'm hoping to get rid of that grumpy look or the anxious rush she'll do sometimes as well. Used partial disengagement to help with that and did a big F8 using the whole arena and stopping in the center and corners until she started to look for those stops and focus on her job. She sat down and gave me some beautiful duck-landing stops today too!


  1. Cute pictures! Sounds like you are a great teacher! One question- what kind of girth do you use with your bareback pad? Right now I'm using a simple woven rope cinch that I had on an old western just looks messy. lol

  2. It's some kind of neoprene cinch that I actually borrowed from my boyfriend's western saddle. I prefer a mohair girth with flat buckles on either side - it's easier on the horse's skin and looks nice as well. :)