Unfortunately work took over my life in June but I did squeeze in a lesson with James McCullough before the chaos began.

I have regular (nearly weekly) lessons anyway but it’s really interesting to get a different perspective.  As he doesn’t see us that often he notices our progress (and bad habits creeping in) more too.

James had us working on slowing Abbey down so that she could balance better in trot and get a little more inside bend.  He asked me to half halt and then encourage into to go on with my inside leg.  Abbey picked it up pretty quick and soon got the idea.  On the right rein she’s a habit of falling out through the left shoulder when I ask for inside bend.  He asked me to pick up that outside hand to support her but drop it occasionally so she learns to carry herself.  On the left rein, especially in canter, her shoulders can sit to the inside and her bum swings out so he had me concentrating on keeping her shoulders in front of me.

As usual, as Abbey got tired so started to toss her head – it’s her favourite evasion.  (Teeth,back and saddle have all been checked)

At the end of the lesson we did a little jumping.  James introduced a new exercise.  He laid out a fan of poles on a circles which we trotted round, then cantered and then he introduced a small jump in the middle.  The idea behind it is to help Abbey learn where her feet are and to maintain a rhythm over a fence. Finally he added in a second fence.