December Goals

Or Stuff We’ll be Working On

November was a good month goal wise, got a bit of riding in, exceeded our goal trail miles by almost 10 miles, planted the seeds of neck reining, and fixed saddle and bit issues. Now it is time to think about December’s goals and what new and fun things we can work on.

Even with our amazing South Florida “winters”, we still have limited daylight in which to work with but, I have a few goals as a big milestone will happen in December (barring a “gawd forbid moment”) we will have hit 100 trail miles since we started keeping track back in July. Beaux is also going to a Gary Lane in February to put some polish on his saddle rack, I am very excited about this.

New Goals:

TRAIL MILES: With the limited daylight I’m putting 50 miles as my goal for trail riding ( I use Endomondo as my GPS app on my phone (free version) and I do upload them to Open Trail website and they keep track of my miles. It’s fun (almost free basic plans start at $15 for the year and opportunities for prizes) and supports keeping trails open to horses.

INTRODUCTION TO DRESSAGE: Yup, it finally happened, Beaux has progressed in his training to the point he can do some basic dressage training. I don’t see competition (outside of a fun show) in our future, but I’m a firm believer in classical dressage as the foundation on which all riding is based. Riding centered, having a confident horse light on the aides, and having basic skills. Using FOSH dressage tests for our inspiration, their two gait intro test has plenty for us to work on. That dreaded 20 m circle, transitions upward/downward, halt, straightness, and working in contact. It’s time for Beaux to learn to “give to bit” and start learning about contact and collection, yup his big boy pants are coming on.

Continuing Goals:

SEAT/LEG CUES: With dressage on our plates, this will help our goals of having light leg and seat cues, so win/win on this goal.

NECK REINING: I consider neck reining a basic trail skill that should be mastered and I introduced this skill last month, now it’s getting consistency.

SADDLE RACK: Beaux can switch from a trot to a saddle rack and for trails, I gotta say, gliding down the trail is a lot of fun, I’m hooked on gaiting. This month is looking for a consistent upward transition, gaiting a few strides, than downward transition to a walk, and gradually ask for longer gaiting times.

So, December has some lofty yet attainable goals and I’m looking very forward to some serious saddle time. So until next time, ride on!

 

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