[Training Tuesday] What Lunging Is All About

After destroying zippers on both tall boots today, we chose the lunging option (no boots no ride!). As we did tons of lunging the last two weeks already as we have a 7-weeks show break (only 5 weeks left of these 7 though). I set the aim of improving Hafl's canter during these seven weeks mainly without saddle. Working on the top line on the lunge line is perfect for him - and me! The stronger his back and hinds get, the easier the canter will be for me to ride. I can already see an improvement now though he just had four days off as we were on holiday (thus, he was certainly not motivated today to work).

I try to alternate the ways of lunging such that it does not get boring for him. Lunging on the cavesson and making hundreds of transitions with an eye on a nicely dropped neck, lunging over poles in trot and canter, interval training with sort of side reins in trot and canter, double lunging mainly in trot. Today, we chose the double lunge. He was pretty stiff and did not really want to bend and it was quite an effort to get him where I wanted him to be. After 20mins of really forward trot and lots of bending and changing of direction I let him canter a bit. He looks more confident, front and end more connected. Of course, in such a short time we did not get rid of his kinda lazy hind leg but we are working on it. When I ride, I either do interval training with longer and longer periods of canter in hunt seat or we do movements playfully. There is no strict dedication to any particular movement right now and those sessions are comparably short.

So, lunging is right now our main focus. Here a short guide on lunging for beginners - oh my, I use the same phrases over and over again and was always wondering why Hafl reacted like he reacted ;)

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