Why Was It A Big Day?
After lunging him briefly at a nice easy walk and trot both ways. We decided it was time for Amelia to throw a leg over him and go for an easy walk around.
We had concerns about how it would affect is rehabbing hip to add weight on his back beside the saddle. As far as that goes, he didn’t show any issue with it at all.
Then there are the typical concerns about a horse not worked in a very long time. Is he going to behave himself? We didn’t really know what to expect. Turns out that aside from a little moving around while she was mounting he was a good boy! the whole entire time. He did not look like a horse that hadn’t been ridden in almost a year.
The Mounting Thing
As long as I have known Cool, he has been known to be fidgety about standing for mounting. My guess was that after his racing career, nobody specifically worked on standing for mounting. This is a skill that is important to teach off-track horses. At the racetrack, their riders are legged up as they are walking out to the track. So standing for mounting is a new concept. It is pretty easy to fix when you take the time to work through it. So we will add that to our program now.
6 days into the project, Amelia gets on Cool and takes him for an easy wander around the ring. His behavior was great, he didn’t seem tense or nervous at all. Most importantly, having the weight of a rider on his back did not seem to aggravate that hind leg. We will keep working on strength and flexibility. He didn’t show any signs of being bothered by his old injury. That makes us super excited! If we continue in a rehab program his future as a riding horse looks promising again!