"A horse is like a mirror, and it's reflecting what and who you are."

This is just a little diary of my horse life. I teach natural horsemanship and dressage. I am currently working on getting back to L4 Parelli after a car accident and surgery.

I suffered from a fear of failure, as things had not gone according to planned after my time off from my injuries. It had been an paralyzing disability (fear) but my healing is coming along nicely, and I hope to pass my level 4 before the end of 2011.

I don't know where I am going, but I am NOT lost!

I am now reviewing dvd's and books, and blogging my reviews. The link on the left in the categories (DVD Clinician Reviews)will take you straight to it. You will find links to the websites of all dvd clinicians I review and they are located on the left hand side bottom of page of the page. None of the clinicians or trainers I am reviewing, sponsor, endorse or authorize this site. For more info about them please click on thier link.

I hope you enjoy!

Savvy On,

I will be giving Savvy Star Ratings based soley on my opinion of it's value to a parelli student as such

***** Must own

**** Must watch

*** Worth watching, but you won't die without it

** Eh' take it with a grain of salt, you will have to filter alot

* OK, but there is better stuff out there to spend your time and money on

0 stars....skip it, it just isn't worth your time.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Well Well Well.....wouldn't CHA know!

I tried to tape my L4 Liberty yesterday.  The first half was not bad considering....

1.Snookie was loose in the arena with us.
2.Both girls were in heat
3.Both had a boyfriend tied to the fence on the outside of the arena.

Rose was like trying to move around a dead cow.  Snookie was squeeling and striking at the boys (not nearly as dead in heat as Rose)  We warmed up, and the girls would run as fast as they could to be by the boys before I could show up and ruin the party.  Finally my friend was ready with the camera, but....in retrospect.....i think Rose was already done at this point.  She really had no problems with DRAW.....but the STICK.......STUNK!  She would do the task, and then split.  And then come back.  I didn't worry about it much at the time figuring I will just hyperspeed the tape in my lonely moments for the audition.  In the arena we trailer loaded....both of them got in BTW, I could NOT keep Snookie out......we did a weave, friendly with the big green ball, lead by the tail, some stick to me, a few of the 7 games......

BUT....then I had the audacity to ask her to do a figure 8.  Nope.....all i saw was butt crack!  She came back, we tried again.....butt crack!  I thought this might be the case, so....as I had planned the night before....we went to the round pen, for the fig8, circles and flying changes.  Never mind the fact that last weekend she did some AWESOME circles in the big arena, real small and stuck like GLUE.  But as usual, no camera around to get it.  So anyways, off we head to the arena.  I hosed her off on the way as it was hot out.  this is where it all fell apart.....just as it ALWAYS does when i attempt an audition.  Started off good, got really nice figure 8's, which would also be really nice flying changes......if the COW would canter...... so long as cantering was not on the menu she was fine.  she would have probably trotted for me all day, but canter....heck no....not without some serious work on my part.  I was sweating like a hog and getting tired myself, and my shoulder was killing me.  It is not suppose to be like this, she is suppose to work....not me!  So there we were.....the Hog and the Cow, going no where.

So I pulled all my "tools" out of the brain shed.....but the one thing i knew i should do....i didn't because i was direct line for the audition.  AGAIN. so with in a few min, i knew it was lost.....worked on getting one canter circle.....and headed back to the arena for shade and online PLAY.  We played with the send.......to toys....."hurry up and get there to play" was the theme.

So I thought about it the rest of the day, and night, and dreamed about it, woke up with it on my mind, thought about it all day today.  What is my strategy going to be?  I know what is broken.....it has been boken for 8 months......YO-YO/DRIVING.....and the lack of an effective phase 4.   It is the one thing I found is a very common 'comment' on audtions......"She doesn't believe you will go to phase 4".....I just don't do much of circling or yo-yo on the circle at home because of the horrible ground conditions.  I feel just terrible, so I don't make anyone do it much. 

And then the phase 4.  What is a phase 4?  I sure was going "there"  but I was having to run out there to tag her.  And the more she saw how much work it was, FOR ME, the more confident she was that she could outlast me. And made a game of how many times she could get me to come out of MY circle.  A phase4 is......what ever is EFFECTIVE...not how hard you can whack your horse.  It felt like i was beating her, yet it was far from effective.  So I knew, with a horse like this, who is wickedly smart, I had to be smarter than her, not stronger or faster, as that is just imposible. Not to mention, on top of it all...............
Hello nimrod.....how can it be good enough for an audition if you dont DO it.....EVER??  So.....since I know she can see my weakness', and then strategize against my inferior skills compared to hers.....I got out the lunge whip.  I am not moving a single inch......but i have to be able to tag her.  Took her a few times before she realized I was the all mighty, all powerfull human with the long arm of the law!  Sometimes I used a long phase one and a serious tag, other times broke the phases down to equal times, and in the end the game of response.....move NOW, you don't have that long before you get tagged.  I sent her out, and if she stopped, i reeled her in, gave her a love, backed her out, stood in neutral for about 20-30 seconds to make her REALLY wonder what was coming next.....then .....I brought my life up....and .....GO!  If I got a NO.....she got a tag.  I did less, she did more.

I cried once or twice.....but I am not a chump.....for the good of the relationship....if she doesn't respect me....we dont have a relationship.  But I also know, she has to feel like a winner too, so of course.....she did not get tagged if she could beat me to it with a snappy depart.  I stood there during the the friendly moments in between sends, and was looking at all the kick marks and bit marks she has on her.  ALOT!!!!  I have never seen a horse so tore up before.  they are every where.  It dawned on me.....she is vying for Snookies position.  She senses weakness and old age, and must be checking in regularly to see if Snookie still has what it takes to be the leader.  My guess is......YES.....

So she must be not moving fast enough, trying to hold her ground with Snookie....and thinking I am no better than her.  Well not today my friends......NOT today.

Phase4 lives.....and unlike the Snookster....I left no marks.....other than on her EGO!!!!

Game plan.  play this game again wed/fri/sat.....and trailer over again to the arena/rp and give canter a whirl again.  We got a great send.....snapiest departs I think she has ever given me....and that not so great working hindend driving game.......moves like a charm now....hide your hiney strikes again!  In the end, she was upholding her end of the bargain with circles.....not changing gaits.......many laps.

Video will be uploaded....well when ever my friend bestowes it upon me.....so....cant say!

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I know I am not perfect.....so be nice!