Imagine how it feels to stand in front of an open oven heated to about 400F. Then imagine all the air you experience whilst outside is like that. Then maybe try to tack up and ride in it.
So … rides this week have been low-intensity. I gave Eli Monday off, and he is also getting today off. Tuesday was very lightweight, and Wednesday evening, the air remarkably cooled down at sunset more quickly, felt cooler (I mean “cooler” but still hot) and less humid. I took the opportunity to work Eli over a few low jumps, primarily for me to practice leads and not so much the jumps. Again, he did another right-to-left change after a line, and I all I did was balance up before the corner and kept my body straight. Getting him to land on the right lead was easy. He landed on the left lead once, but I just stopped straight rather than ask for a change right away. I want to reinforce the straightness and balance through the turns that we need for lead changes, and some times that mean NOT doing lead changes.
Gah damn. I have been lucky to have had a slew of experiences with horses who had easy changes, because it is taking all of my brain power to get them ironed out in Eli. And they ARE getting ironed out.
I have been obsessed with this horse for four years, but I am still liking him more and more.