True, I may not be posting much (or riding much thanks to the weather and my schedule) but I am doing No Stirrup November. I even rode Mia for the second time bareback, my first time actually doing something other than walking around. She was pretty good, definitely not as easy to ride as TWH or App bareback though as she is inconsistent and wiggly but she is MUCH more comfortable with her tiny bounce trot hehe. It is SO much easier to sit her trot than it is either of the boys trot, that makes it very easy to ride bareback in the trot :)
I rode a quick w/t/c bareback and it is very obvious that I needed No Stirrup November, my balance is not where it is supposed to be. While I didn't try to fall off, really fall off anyway, I wasn't as secure in my seat as I should be. I stick like glue still but the balance is just not as great. The trot is good and even the canter is pretty good but the canter to trot transition is a little unbalanced and sharp turns leave me off-center. I think I am just not adequately preparing and maybe muscle memory is rusty. Nothing to really report though, Mia was behaving quite well and letting me work on myself without being too much of a sassy redhead.
Last weekend I rode Mia out on the road and ponied the App, the goal was to just trot forward and try to get her to stop shying at things while we are out and we were mildly successful. K came with us on TWH and she laughed when Mia body bumped App because she shied away from a big stick on the side of the road. SMH. The horse lives in a pasture that is 1/2 wooded in an old growth forest. Of course she would shy from a stick. At the last third of the ride, K and TWH cantered on ahead with Mia, App and I trotting behind. Mia picked up a slow canter and so I allowed it and we were going along quite well for about 10 strides. Then App decided it was time to take off and Mia didn't listen to my seat to stop so I could deal with him. So here I am riding a horse who isn't stopping trying to hold onto another horse that is trying like hell to break free and gallop off because he is being an asshole. It took almost an eighth of a mile to stop the two horses and I went off on App. The asshole knows better and if it hadn't been for the fact that I had been holding the rope in both hands with Mia's reins, he would have successfully gotten free. Grrr!!!! I was ponying him in a rope halter (as it is more effective than a nylon halter) but now and thinking I need to have a damn chain over his nose if we go out again. Stupid horse. At least I felt better that he was tired when he got back from all of the trotting we did, he deserved to be tired. Stupid horse.
Last night I rode Mia again while K rode TWH and it certainly went better than my last rides. K was using the bareback pad so I rode in the (cold, COLD!) saddle and we had a pretty good dressage ride (sans stirrups). I worked on sitting Mia on her butt so we could do some small circles and changes of direction. Mia is doing much better of not dropping her left shoulder when we do a figure 8 and her transitions are nice and crisp. Her right lead canter is still her harder one, she is often dropping her inside shoulder, giraffing her neck or going as fast as she can but we were successfully able to get a full circle of a good canter on 2 different occasions. Yay! Hopefully at the beginning of December I will take a lesson and get someone else's opinion and help me develop a road map of where to go from here. Let No Stirrup November continue!