Thursday, July 21, 2016

Endurance Days, Cones Courses, and Chiropractors

Since the horse show I had putzed around a bit on Finn, but was holding off on serious riding until he had his chiropractic appointment. I didn't feel like it would be fair to drill anything in to him, especially since it would just end in me getting frustrated and flustered anyways.

So Spud has been pulled out more than usual and we've put in some serious miles this July. We've gone approximately 35km thus far, with many more to be added on! For a pudgy pony, he has some serious endurance.

In addition to the endurance aspect of our drives, I've begun implementing some mock "cones" drills with a bunch of random spare tires that used to be a cross country jump at one point. Spacing out the tires gave me the ability to do some "cones courses" and to work on more refined turns and speed control. I don't have a problem letting Spud choose his pace and such during the endurance stuff, but when it comes to speed + tight turns, there has to be some serious communication going on to prevent any cart tipping or otherwise.

A friend of mine who is pretty interested in Spud and the whole driving thing is up here visiting so I've drug him out to drive me with the last few times and had him try out all his new gears since the last time he visited. It's also super fun to see someone else drive him considering I've been his main driver for a good portion of his career.
Scattered tires = cones? Why not.
I'm gearing up for a show at the end of August, which will be our only show of the year. I have high expectations, but at the same time, I'm not going to put the pressure on him. He's still quite green and this will be the first (of many!) shows in his career.

In Finn news, I trailered him out on Wednesday to see the chiropractor/body worker that Finn's owner normally uses (not the same one who has adjusted Suzie and Spud). The appointment went well and the findings were quite interesting!

Finn's entire pelvis was shifted and his right femur was actually turned and was crooked. His ribs were out in multiple places, as well as his spine.

In all honesty, he was a mess.

We'll get back to this soon enough.
But I shouldn't be surprised. He hadn't been adjusted in nearly two years (since he was retired) and I had been riding him more than he had been in the last while.

The body worker took about 45 minutes to adjust, re-adjust, and work out knots and such. Finn's back quite literally came up about 2 full inches and the body worker showed me how actually fucked up his hip was (how did I not notice, like rly?).

It also explains our "lameness" on the left rein.

Three days off for Mr. Finn and then we will get back to our regularly scheduled program. Hopefully all of the adjustments help his striding, transitions, and overall work ethic. It's amazing what professionals can find with just one look.


  1. Woooooo shows! For the cones courses, in prep for your show, I'd suggest tightening up the clearance to actual show size. Because it will SHOCK you how tight those things actually are if you get to a show and haven't been practicing at show regulation size! You'll wonder how you'll ever even fit through them! I creamed the first actual regulation size cones course I went through. I still knock down at least 3 on most every course. But it's because I don't practice enough at that width and I know it!

    1. At my last combined driving event I had my best ever clear AND fast cones course. I think it was because I didn't micromanage, I aimed for a line early and drove it like a geometry in dressage. It was the funest thing ever!

    2. I actually did have the "cones" closer together when I was practicing through them, but my friend was a bit more nervous about hitting the tires by accident so I spaced them out wider for him.

      I did notice that Spud would probably turn much better with marathon shafts - I can't wait to upgrade my cart!!

  2. I bet Finn was sooooo happy after seeing the chiro! I'm sure that will help a ton.

    And Spud is looking as cute as ever. I'm sure you're going to kill it at the show.

    1. Finn was very happy to see the chiro ;)

      And Spud IS cute. ahha.

  3. I can't wait to see spud kill it in some shows!!! Glad you've got Finn sorted out too :)

    1. Me too - I'm so excited to show him!

      And yes, Finn is feeling much better!

  4. Spud is way to cute! Glad the chiro was able to sort Finn out.