Double The Pleasure, Double The Fun

That is not only true for Wrigley's Doublemint ( but also for lunging your horse.

Two weeks ago, we participated in a double lunging course with famous German Marco Hildebrandt ( We tried to do some double lunging and long reining before but were curious what he would find out. On Day 1, he was working with Hafl trying to find out about his weaknesses. And, yes, there were many. As always with strangers, Hafl tried his boundaries. He even ignored him to a certain extent, knowing well what he wants him to do but still refusing to answer. But Marco was so quick in his asking that in the end, he gave in. He wasn't too cooperative though and it was sweaty for both of them. Marco did not stop to ask for true bend and true trot throughout his whole body. He only works in trot with with different ways of placing the lunges on and around the horse. He tested well whether the horse was physically capable of doing the things he asks them for and whenever there was a glimpse of Hafl truly trotting through his body, he rewarded him. The training was strenuous and it was far from: ok, that was ONE good stride, let's leave it to that. I would not say that he was taking to his limits physically, but mentally. Hafl always had that energy saving approach to training: why trotting more than this when this trot brought ribbons anyways? And sure, there is way more potential than he reveals. And Marco was digging deep to uncover his true bending, trotting, using his back correctly potential.
That is exhausting, human!

Day 2 it seems that he was a completely different horse. Seeming to have more self esteem and way more expression he easily responded to Marco's requests. No more forcing every step, no more lying on the bit. He was fresh forward and incomparable to the day before. So on this day, I was also allowed to work him with Marco keeping a wary eye on us. He was pretty happy with the way it worked out and he was also happy with Hafl changing his attitude from day 1 to 2.
Day 2 - My first try
With a little help (front leg yay!)

Some good steps

So, after two days it seemed that Hafl had discovered the proper use of his back - honestly, I guess he knew it before, just like me knowing that I should do more abs training but still refusing to do enough for it.

But the real magic happened the days after. On Monday, it didn't seem that there was much of a difference, but on Tuesday (obviously he was sore on Monday, too) it was like riding a complete different horse! OMG! That CANTER! It felt super collected and easy to ride compared to what we were used to only some months ago. Sure, it was getting better since February but I didn't dare dreaming of cantering like THIS! And the trot! Gaining a stage where we feel airtime in trot! Amazing! Sleeping beauty of Hafl's gaits awakened by the double lunge! And now, this training method is on our weekly schedule - sorry, Hafl, we know that you can do it!

Change of reins - Run, human, run!

Again, some help on posture

Watch out for perfect leg synchro between trainer, Hafl and me

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