Wednesday, December 26, 2007

we got round the 20 acre

with gaynor on charlie. didnt' bother with futile attempts to get on unaided, just walked her round to the barn and got Gaynor to hold her (oops, just realised left eh hot water bottle there...).

The plan had in fact been to go the track past the house, but the house alarm had been going all afternoon, sometimes ending up sounding like an air raid siren, and molly wasn't having any of that (who can blame her!). so down teh 20 acre we went, and she didn't put a foot wrong all the way round. It was getting on to be a bit dull to go up to the riding school so we headed back to go into the arena for a while. I DID get off at the last gate voluntarily, as the alarm was still going and I didn't want to be put into a position where she got me off in any way.

and she did have one plant - we'd wanted to go up a hill in a field to come out at the top of the drive, but she wasn't having that.

Gaynor - whose known her since I got her, and has ridden her - agrees with me that she would behave the same whoever rode her, and that it's something in Molly's head that suddenly makes her decide not to go somewhere.... even when it's places she's been before.

Glad we decided against the ford though - it looked rather deep! and we were lucky that the 20 acre wasn't too deep -it can be a mud bath in the winter, but since it hasn't rained for a couple of weeks it wasn't too bad at all.

I spent ages with the saddle and the mattes pad - saddle upside down on table, centre seam of pad being pushed into the gullet - was much better than last time, although does drop a bit.

The saddle sort of spreads as it goes onto the horse's back - which it would, being treeless! - and the shimming in this pad is keeping it off her wither but then it's not right further back as the centre seam drops down as you put the saddle waiting to hear.


cptrayes said...

Claire it occurs to me that a treeless saddle is about the last thing that you need with a horse which won't stand still to be got on ... you really need total stability, so that if she moves when you only have one foot in the stirrup you can stay there and carry on with the movement or stand in the one stirrup until she stops. Still, treeless you have so I doubt if this advice is of much use to you at all!!!!!


Claire said...

ah yes, but this came about because of the problems i'd had getting a treed saddle to fit her mother, which was a nightmare due to (what i now know to be ) the congenital assymetry at the shoulder. Queenie had quite interesting atrophy as well....

the alternatives for molly were

1. Fhoenix
2. WOW
3. who knows, probably a Balance.

can't see anything else having much chance of being right.

happily in that context, we don't actually get as far as one foot in the stirrup before she moves - she moves before she gets to where i can put the foot in the stirrup!

and on the rare occasion when i have been half on when she's moved off, it has stayed put.

but otherwise, that would have been a good thought...and who knows, i may end up having to change again, which would be tedious to say the least!

minky said...

Has anyone else tried riding her.. someone who would basically give her a wallop and push her when she tries it on,someone like Caroline used to help her with Zippy?Just wondered what her reaction would be??
My nature would find it impossible not to confront her and allow her to dictate where we went..particularly if she isnt really scared & just being a madam.
Not saying im right its just my personality I find it hard to know when to back off which leads me into trouble at times:)))
I know if I didnt ride Polo with total leadership I wouldnt get him off the yard, a few friends have had a sit on him and he totally took the you know what!

Jean said...

Tucker can be very intimidating when he balks, but lately, I have been managing to convince him it's not the best solution to things.

The trouble with a confrontation is that once you start, you absolutely must win. I do like Minky's suggestion of having someone else who would not be intimidated ride her through some of her balking. It certainly helped when Tucker spent his time with Kenny Harlow. Any trainers around who might take her on for a month or so?

Don't ever get stuck with the idea that you and you alone must solve all her problems. A good trainer is an ideal solution as even Caroline will testify. And I, personally, have now done it with two of my horses and might even sent Tucker off again for a week or so if he needs it.

Claire said...

yes, nicola, she has been ridden by others. Jimmy, a former jockey, a really nice quiet rider, took her out a few times last year, and gaynor has been on her once or twice.

she still blocks, reared with gaynor (to be fair, that was just after i'd had my fall, and TBH i think that frightened Molly quite a bit). Jimmy ended up on the ground but maintained his position and was still on when she got up, i think. That was at a narrow gate which she hadn't done before - when i found out where it had been at, i wasn't at all surprised and wouldn't have dreamt of trying her that way, especially in a largish group! he was trying to make her go first, and of course she would have been frightened genuinely because of the horses behind her and the memory of what happened when she was 6 months old (although I hadn't quite worked that out at the time).

and Emma rode her the other week.

oh, Jimmy could vault on.