After the lunging warmup ( we do every time we ride,) I thought he was going to be calm and focused. Nothing was further from his mind. I wasn't in the saddle two minutes when he started head shaking, and elevating, looking everywhere and not focusing on me AT ALL.
So we did small circles, usually that brings him around. But no. That didn't phase him, so we did some counter bending circles, that is the second tool I use. He just started to rear and buck! He got spanked and then he got his little head tied around to his left cinch and lunged more. After about fifteen minutes of that, he dropped his head and looked softer. Back up I go, offering him the chance to go soft and quiet.
Nope! Psyche! So more circles, more counter bends, some half halts, some circle drills, all to little avail. Finally after two hours- yes that is right- I rode him for two full hours- he finally got soft, stayed between the reins and focused on just me! Man o man- sometimes I just hate that horse!
Today I went back early with Lil Mama. Tacked up, lunged, he was sure carrying the mail, rolled him back off his hocks a few times, and climbed on board. Just asking for a focused and quiet ride. That is all. Stay between the reins- keep your shoulders up!
Hurrah! He was quiet, focused and compliant! Whew! I don't want to think what kind of shape my poor ol' legs would be in if he hadn't wanted to be good today!
Lil Mama reminded me- "Horses are cool. When I grow up I want to own twenty!"