And With The Good We Must Take The Bad

Enjoying a good scratch

Enjoying a good scratch

On the bright side it seems like every time he is very difficult it marks a coming breakthrough.

He hadn’t been ridden for at least a week, I don’t think. Can’t remember when it was exactly. I worked with him yesterday on mat training but only ground work. Today, yesterday by now, I had time to saddle him. We worked on the mat a little, left him of the lead altogether, he walked at my shoulder and trotted along with me to close gates and get ready to ride. I thought we were doing great.

He walked right up to the gate for me to mount and walked off happily. I still thought we were good. And really we weren’t bad just not as good. He balled up a couple of times and tried to buck. I said that and my always concerned husband nearly had a fit. Why did I stay on! and so forth. It wasn’t much of a try, he ducked his head and hunched his shoulders. It was a reminder of why I think traditional training has a place even in clicker training. I pulled his head around in a firm one rein stop let him settle and we tried again.

On an older horse, with a few more buttons and levers installed that little bit is no big deal. When riding a wet noddle it’s a little different.

In between we worked on moving off my leg and stopping. Now that he’s going it seems like a good idea. I rewarded a couple of turns and he started wanting to spin in circles. It’s that looking for the right answer, just not as enjoyable as from the ground. He is so light and responsive and intelligent it can be hard to be sure I am asking the right questions. Should I start with only turning one way and clicking so he doesn’t get confused? Or can he figure out turns each way? I know I should have reinforced the time I took a deep breath and exhaled and he stopped. I just wasn’t thinking fast enough and it wasn’t what I had intended so I pushed him on before my brain had a chance to catch up.

He is fun, even when we aren’t on the same page, and I hope to get out to ride him tomorrow but the wind is supposed to blow so I’m afraid it may be awhile once again. Oh well back to ground work.



One thought on “And With The Good We Must Take The Bad

  1. TElllingson

    I agree that just before a breakthrough they some times backtrack a step or two.
    i would not be brave enough to work though the hard times. Good work!

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