Not too good for him. How can I expect him to believe he can canter well if I don't believe he can?
|Picture from Claddagh Equestrian Center|
So I visited a local farm to take a lesson on a horse that canters with no issue. I forgot to take pictures but snagged this photo of the horse I rode, Goodie, from their Facbook page. Goodie's regular job is a hunt horse and she is quite a gem. Canters off with no issues and has good brakes too!
This picture is a good example too of what they were trying to teach me -- to stand up in the stirrups (more straight up than in two point) in a balanced position. In my case, she wanted me to put my hands midway up on the horses neck for balance. This was hard for me -- both physcially and menally. Mentally because I felt vulnerable in the event that Goodie was going to buck (she never even hinted at bucking though) and physically because I just wasn't used to that position. Physically it also pointed out that I wasn't as balanced as I thought I was.
During the lesson I also realized that I was cocking my hands inward rather than having my thumbs up and pointing forward. A habit I will have to work on for sure.
I was able to work past the fear though and got Goodie into a good rolling canter multiple times, staying up in my stirrups and remaining pretty balanced. While I held mane at times, I don't think I ever pulled on her mouth so I was glad of that.
Now just need to keep at it!