I think this is our 17th ride? Yesterday I set up my video camera on the little trail out back. Since she was so good last weekend with trotting out there, I decided that I would try to do more work out there and especially work on the canter on the trails. With Mac I found that it was a great way to teach the canter so that he could just go forward, and I think it will be good for Princess Fancy Pants, too. As I mentioned in previous postings, I've cantered her twice before today, for just a few strides. But I feel like outdoors it will be easier for her and she can go for a longer period of time because we wouldn't always be turning. I think visually it helps them to see that there's a lot of open space ahead to move out.
Heretofore (I love that word) I would ride her in the indoor for a little bit (w/t), and then go outside for a walk on the trails to cool down. Last week's ride, I did half and half - half the ride indoors, then instead of just cooling down outside, I did a little bit of trotting on the track. She was nice and forward and really seemed to like it.
For yesterday's ride, I just went straight outside. I had placed the camera where I'd get most coverage, but there are still only a few-second snippets of each thing we did.
The first short sections are of us walking. My plan was to trot next, and I was surprised when instead she picked up the canter! So I just went with it. I'm not embarrassed to say I was just a little skeert because she's obviously VERY green, there were no walls to hold us in, deer could have jumped out from anywhere, and this pony can leap off the ground and fold herself in half very easily if she wants to - she's very athletic. Plus it was windy, and the area behind me is our neighbors' house where the ninja dog was lurking about (she'll silently run at the fence with no barking or warning), they have a tarp that is always flapping around, and their garbage can had blown over and was rolling around in the yard.
We did just that one section of cantering, then we'd come back to the walk. We did that for two laps, then the other way we did some trotting. A couple laps of walking again to cool out and I called it a day, as that was the longest period of time we had spent out there. It was about a 20-minute ride.
Princess Fancy Pants was perfect. What a great way for her to work, I think I'll do it like that from now on!