Diary of a Safecob in Training Feb 2010

Diary of a Safecob in Training Feb 2010

I took Chatty to the village green feeling a little guilty about the state of the ground after the constant rain. We left some large divots, but there are so many mole hills, it all looks one and the same from a distance. I particularly wanted to build her understanding of different canter leads, we were short of time again, there was virtually no preamble, we went straight to it.

Chatty is a bit of a master in canter with the left lead on the right rein. She thinks it's fine, and anything different isn't worth the bother. However, I disagree, and we were both perspiring with the effort, but we got there in the end.

If a particular lead isn't happening, I try to bend the neck to the outside. This puts more weight onto the inside shoulder making it a lot easier to find the correct leg. Chatty still managed to bypass the system, so I took my schooling whip into the outside hand, and waited until we were on the part of the circle where she tends to fall in, and slapped her on the shoulder. It worked well and I kept her going forward for a circuit or two before telling her she was a good girl, which always produces an abrupt halt.

I must be particularly tired tonight because I've twice deleted what I wrote, which was briefly describing how there is more canter work to do, but when she's up to speed in that department, the main part of her training will be finished. This is probably a good time to hand her over to Annie or Michael for a while, which will free me up for some of the others.

I don't feel the diary is quite finished, but there might be gaps in the entries. We will film her too once the weather sorts itself out. I've enjoyed sharing Chatty's journey in this way, and who knows, I might be tempted to do it all over again with a different horse.

Thank you for reading