Anyway, Eric offered to ride her first. She's so athletic! But definitely more than I want to deal with until I'm clear on what the cues are. We watched and kept asking questions about how and why and what, so Eric kept riding, showing and explaining.
While he was talking, I was trying to listen and take mental notes since it was too windy for the tape to pick up well, but here's a quick look.
Amyra's not a passive, easy horse. She's very prima donna, and always has been. Wearing a saddle hasn't changed that in the slightest. Watching her ridden it was immediately apparent that she's going to be one that tests and doesn't just go along quietly. When she resists and doesn't get what she wants she has temper tantrums. If that approach doesn't work, she'll refocus and cooperate. Until the next time... With Eric she doesn't get away with it, and he's quick to give her the opportunity to get unflustered and back on track. I KNOW I'm not that sensitive, that quick, or let's face it that good.
As we watched and learned I commented to T that I would feel a lot better if she stayed at Eric's for another month. If he can keep riding her, she'll keep progressing and maybe I could take some lessons on one of Eric's reiners so that I have some clue what I'm doing and I don't royally screw her up.
When presented with our thoughts, Eric concurred - of course, it's good business for him, but I think it's what's best for Amyra, too.
Rather than T riding Amyra, Eric asked if he would be open to riding one of Eric's finished reining horses and getting the feel of what he should expect. T's never, ever had an actual riding lesson. His experience has been of the, "here's your horse - don't fall off," variety - he's learned from watching, asking questions, figuring Rufus out, and by taking in whatever information I could explain coherently.
But this is a man who will actually stop and ask directions - one of the many things I love about him and that trait translates to other arenas as well, thank goodness. I watched and shivered as it got cooler while Eric coached T through the correct way to cue for a lead, a simple, slow spin, and finally a flying lead change. The irritating part of all this? T's position is better than mine, and he retains and applies what Eric tells him better. Of course, since he doesn't have all of my years of doing-it-wrong muscle memory, I guess I can forgive him, lol!
T made me promise not to post pictures, unfortunately.
So stay tuned, I guess I'll be learning to ride a reiner.