A racehorse's first time doing dressage. Hopefully, it helps strengthen her long topline.
Anyway, I'll just get to the point. WINN IS SOUND! As in, he feels fantastic! And guys, he's SO amazing to ride!
Blurry screenshots work, right? Also, it probably looks like I'm asking him to lengthen a little here, I'm not. I wouldn't ask him for that when he isn't fit.
I'd forgotten how nice it is to get on a horse and be able to focus on myself, to not constantly have to help the horse. It's not like I can just sit and do nothing, but I don't have to spend the entire ride micromanaging the basics.
What I am most excited about with Winn is how good he is in the hind end. I've ridden him since he was three and he's always been weak in that area. He moved more like a hunter (not saying there's anything wrong with hunter movement) and no matter what me or anyone else did, he never seemed to get enough strength to be able to handle the collection at anything above second level. Now he feels and moves like a dressage horse! I feel like he can get strong enough to go further.
He's not even fit right now and he has twice as much power in the hind end as he ever has.
I think that gelding him helped a lot. He really filled out in the back half of his body since I did and he's gotten lighter in the front. *Bonus- I no longer have to deal with a 17.1 stallion that goes straight up in the air on his weak hind end when he hears a horse a mile away whinny. I'm sad that he won't have more foals, but his ability to reproduce wasn't worth risking both of our lives over. Plus, he's so much happier now.
The other thing that helped was L, the lady that does the adjustments and laser in all of our horses, working on him. She adjusted him last Fall and his hind end has been phenomenal since. I can only imagine where he would be if we hadn't had to deal with his feet problems. I know there are quite a few people out there that don't believe in chiropractic for horses. Honestly, even I think that only about 10% out there get effective results that last, but if you had seen the before and after of Winn, it might change your mind. I wish that I'd known her when he was three.
So, I am finally able to completely enjoy my lovely horse! While Winn is at the track, we are taking advantage of the hill and working on getting him even stronger. He seems to really enjoy not being confined to the arena. He's been really well behaved with the exception of the one day he was a little too fresh. I'm not going to hold that against him.
Sandy thinks that doing some dressage work is actually kind of fun even if she is still a racehorse. Talk about a horse that will have no difficulty moving on to a second career.
I still want to find a place to board at, but I'm a little worried about how I'm going to have time to work at the track, ride a couple of horses after the track closes, spend an hour+ of my day driving, ride Winn and Indy, and then do evening chores. I'm already tired and I don't want it to end up that they only get ridden three days a week because I don't have the time and energy to drive out to ride them. I'm still trying to figure that one out, so we'll see. In the mean time, I'm going to enjoy having them here.