Thursday, October 21, 2010

Sizing Things Up.......A Change of Tack.........

Part 1

Since my priority is to get this Arabian horse into the show ring next year, I decided it might be smart to change my goals for him just a bit. Instead of focusing on western pleasure alone, I would work the horse towards hunter pleasure as well. The hunter gaits are much easier to attain than the more collected western gaits so if we didn't get far enough with the western to be competitive, I would still be able to show the horse in hunter.

I must admit that originally I never expected Bey Aana's babies to be any good at hunter. They have flatter toplines than the other Leg's babies and are not quite as athletic. I envision them as western pleasure horses just like their mother and grandmother before her.

However, one of Aana's babies first went into the ring as a hunter horse. I made it a point to watch his class to see how he looked next to the other hunters. To my surprise the horse very much looked like a hunter moving down the rail at the trot and from what I could tell the judges loved him.

It was easy to see the horse had lots of potential in the division even though the horse had some issues. Judges wanted to use him and gave him every chance to redeem himself but he and his rider had issues that did not get resolved but then that's another story for another day. The point is, after seeing him in the ring, I knew that Storm and his other brothers could easily do hunter as well.

Originally the plan had been for Storm to be shown as a hunter in 2009. I had seen him schooled that way a couple of times and it looked like he was beginning to come together. I even thought he was going to be shown at the Daffodil All Arabian Spring Horse Show that year but somewhere along the line the plans changed but then that's also another story for another day.

With hunter being a more forward discipline I thought it would be helpful to work the horse in this manner to get the forward he needed back into his step. I could start off with the hunter schooling each day and wrap up working on the western. That way if we did manage to get the horse to the far enough along to do western we had that option and we still had the time we needed to get him into the curb bit before getting him into the ring.

I hoped the more forward movement of the hunter gaits would make Storm more comfortable about going forward and that it would carry over when I asked the horse to get more collected for western. I also figured it would be easier for the horse to figure out his balance at the more relaxed hunter gaits. I wouldn't ask him to do the more collected gaits until he had his balance figured out for hunter. So now I had a plan, I just had to put it into motion.

To be continued...............

Housework...or Riding... or maybe Falling

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1 comment:

  1. yaaa its always good to have a plan, and yours sounds like it should work for him.