So today was a very good day for Bella.
She was asked to walk, trot and canter in both directions which she did we great composure. She is perfectly happy and balanced at both the walk and trot, even a wonderful extended trot, not at all bad for only having been ridden only a handful of times. She is far from completely balanced at the canter, but did not get upset or panic at any point. Even without a flexing, her canter is soft and easy to sit. I don’t think she will ever have the “loft” that Orion has in his canter, but I think hers will be wonderfully soft and a pleasure to ride.
She was picking up her left lead every time it was asked for and about half the time the right lead was requested. Normal for a left handed horse just starting out, so to be expected. What was unexpected is her willingness to just step into the canter from the walk. This bodes very well for her future training as a warhorse.
Equally impressive in her performance today was the willingness to stand quietly while other horses where being worked in the main arena area. She stood without moving a foot while her rider watched the others and while conversation was going on. She is already showing a mature work ethic and I could not be more pleased by it.
Now we must just work on her bending and softening her slightly rigid center line. This will will do with short line lunging, stretching and of course flexing while being ridden.
I am really impressed with how fast this mare is coming along. I was certain when I started her under saddle a few months ago that I would not be able to do much real in saddle training this year, but so far she has taking everything we have tried with her in stride naturally.