Today was a lesson on Spring Song with Alex Reinfels. Ron Marino came to help set up the Cowboy Dressage Court. We used Dominique’s measuring wheel to help position the twenty poles in the correct locations.
Alex talked us through the “Walk, jog, lope test one”. We walked. Then he talked us through the test and we walked and jogged. We didn’t lope. During the lope we jogged.
One interesting feature on the test is we’re to enter at a working jog, halt at 8 (this is “x” in the dressage arena). We back up 4-6 steps. Salute. Well, the hexagon of white poles around 8 are 12 feet apart. With 8 being 6 feet from every pole. If you back up 6 steps, you’re going to back up over the pole you just crossed to get to 8. Spring Song was amazing. She’s just now being introduced to backing up. She had no problem backing up over a pole. What a girl!
After all this Cowboy Dressage test Alex, Ron and I worked on opening the gate. We’ll run into this at the start of the Cowboy Dressage test (we have to open the gate, but we don’t have to close it) and we could see it in the Ranch/Trail obstacles. I’ve introduced Spring Song to the “gate” that has a pole for the standard and two polos tied together for the “gate”. She did this beautifully for Alex and Ron. Then they tried to add substance to it. Alex and Ron also became gate posts out in the arena, away from the wall. Spring Song and I opened those gates.
To finish things off I tossed the head loop around the tall cone. Got it!!! Then coiled up the rope from Spring Song’s back. She never budged. We left the rope on the cone one time so that we could practice dragging the cone to her and pulling it. For the pulling I turned her away from the cone and she pulled it. Initially the cone was on a low pedestal. She was a STAR! I was able to pull the cone off the pedestal and onto the arena floor. She was perfectly calm about it.
Ron said, “Winnie, do you want to try to rope a moving target?” He fetched the NEW bull which is on a wheel. Spring Song and I tracked the bull and I successfully roped it.