Then it is time for blog number 2! This time I figured I would write how I think when I continue work with the horses that have successfully competed this year as six-year-old.
I have had two six-year-olds this year and both have done a couple of starts in Germany and then they went to the Falsterbo Horse Show. In Falsterbo they made a very good result, Foreign Affair won and Forlan ended up on place three. I was incredibly pleased with the performance of both horses, not only did they give everything on the track but were also incredibly skilled with surroundings, set-ups and travel. Both of these horses are horses that have all the prerequisites for being top horses, they have good gaits, impulsion and have a very good working will.
After Falsterbo it became the first green work for both of them. A couple of weeks with just peace and quiet, which is incredibly important for young horses, both for the body and for the mind.
After that, it was time to jog in again and when they’ve come back to training, it’s time to start thinking about the next step in the training. When they go from six to seven, there’s a lot to learn, it’s piruettes, boutiques and being able to perform better in everything.
It is now also time to introduce the double bridle. This is a part that is always as exciting, first you will find double bridle and mouth piece that may be suitable. If you have ridden the horses for an extended period of time, you have already got an idea of what might fit. On both Forlan and Foreign Affair we instantly found the right and both enjoy double bridle very well!
Now I was going to describe a little how to train the horse when you start with flying changes. I usually start but try to make two / three changes on a diagonal, if the horse is calm you can try to do more afterwards. If you are having trouble getting the horse straight, then it’s a good idea to make the long side changes so that you can get help from the wall.
The next step is to do the changes on the quarterline, preferably towards a mirror so that you can control the straightness. Another exercise that is good is to do the changes in serpentine bows, everytime you ride past the middle line you do a change, but the most important thing is that the horse is not allowed to turn directly after the change until being one-two steps straight forward.
When it’s time to start with the pirouette gallopp, my first step is to be able to ride a circle and when it works, I try to pick up a couple of steps and then ride forward again. This is also very good to do on straight track and preferably on the quarter line against the mirror so that the horse stays straight when collecting yourself. When this works, I usually ride a square of 15 meters, in each corner I collect myself and turn 2-3 steps straight forward again and in the next corner the same. When this is done, try to make a half pirouette, the most important thing is that the horse does not lie on the inner book and just turns around without having a good contact on the outer strap so that you can check each step. If you feel that the horse turns itself-go out and do it again. Another important thing is also that you have a good bend to the inside.
It is important to know how much the horse can handle and sometimes you do less and make sure you vary the work so that the horses think it’s fun to work.
Until next time! / Malin