Now this mare seriously lacks confidence to move forward. At home she's fine, a little hesitant to move out away from her comfort zone, but otherwise fine. Being in a new place, a new arena, new sights, sounds and everything else, she did okay. Lunging she tried to cling to one side, one corner of the arena, but we worked it out. When I got on her she froze and didn't want to move. She stood there watching and taking it all in. OMG! So much to process....
I finally got her to walk and we made several circles but still didn't venture far from the one end of the arena. She seen Cindy and Trax going around, this end to that end, serpentines, circles and everything in between. Not once did her mind let "Race Horse" mode kick in and she want to take off and follow him, even when they did a canter depart in front of us and went to the other end of the arena.
I did manage to get her into a trot a few times both directions. She did not want to settle down into the bridle though and pick up her comfortable trot. I tried taking up contact with one rein but still I bounced and it sucked. We made a few more laps around the end of the arena at a walk and I called it good. It was getting late and I still needed to work Cindy's mare in long lines before leaving to take the mares back, drop them off and feed before coming back home.
Sassy did really well as Cindy told me she hasn't worn a bridle much before. I started her out with the lines through the lower rings and let her move out. She picked up a trot and acted a bit like she was expecting the outside rope to slide up under her tail and give her an excuse to buck. It never did so she just kept moving along and soon she relaxed and stopped. I moved around behind her to keep the outside rein from sliding up as I asked her to turn around and reversed her direction. She walked and soon trotted and did really well. Her head was still a bit high, but each time she dropped it I praised her and told her how good that was. Before long her head came down as she relaxed and moved forward. The contact was soft and steady and gave her support when she needed it.
I changed the reins up to go thru the rings where my hands would be if I were riding and moved her off again. She did really well and again I kept praising her every time she dropped her head and relaxed. Before long she was trotting around on a semi loose rein and looked beautiful doing it. We finished up with a bit of softening work, serpentines and I tried to explain to Cindy what I was doing and how as I did it. Sassy even seemed pleased with herself.