Sunday, September 25, 2016

tweaks and adjustments

This past week Prophecy had a check in with the Chiro - finally got our schedules to mesh!
And, I got a few answers:
- Dr. did not see any signs of ulcers during his exam. I still have a mass of data that collected and put into a file in case I need it for treating ulcers or adding a good gut supplement to his regime.
- Prophecy was out at the withers mainly, then some in the low back and working its way into the left hip. His head tossing was likely due to the wither issue.  And that was likely due to using poor fitting saddles on him.  At least 3 used this year have not fit correctly. 2 between the first trainer and previous owner, and 1 that I used on him for July which we thought was wide enough but still left pressure marks on either side of the withers.  
- The Phoenix saddle fits.  Once I can get him past his girthyness I should be able to use my shorter 22" cinch as well, but the 24" mohair with ring covers works.

Just over 24hrs later I could see a big difference in his body.  Thursday night I pulled him out and noticed right away he was holding himself in a much more proper posturing now and using his muscles!  It gave me great hope towards getting back to riding without pain for the weekend.

just a few days prior to his adjustment

day after chiro adjustment

So now what?
He got a few days rest after the adjustment, with just a night of hoof treatment and massage while he soaked on Thursday, and then Sunday was the first time to ride and see how he felt compared to before.
Unfortunately, I found this fun wound...I imagine he wacked it in the round pen where he has been spending much of his time lately (main field is on rest, so the horses are all getting jostled around and he an the minis trade time in one lot and the round pen). I felt no heat from it, and he wasn't at all lame so cleaned it off and put some ointment on it before and after we rode.

His back end still looked nice, and his overall presence happy.

Tacking up:  This went better than it has been lately.  I tried something to make it quicker and easier on myself by putting the saddle on the pad and having it "centered" and pulled into the gullet before putting it on him.  This cut down the amount of time I am fumbling and trying to get it right.  He didn't evade as much, and just had him stand with it on a few before I tried to girth up, and then did that very loosely at first.  I was happy with the progress compared to my saddle hitting the ground last weekend.  I went back to using a bit, since him grabbing the reins of the S-hack is not something I want to deal with while sorting this out, and he had done well with the Myler before.

Lunge: I have gotten into the habit of lunging him before trying to ride. This helps me assess the saddle position (if it bounces a bunch I know the girth is still loose) as well as if we have any "off" moments. He moved well, so that back foot was not bothering him.

Ride:  Well, that unfortunately did not go as well as I hoped.  Any time I asked for more than a walk he flipped/twisted his head around at me.  He even tossed quite a bit at the walk.  So, tomorrow I am enlisting the help of the trainer that gave him his refresher in July to see if we can figure out WHY it is happening. I have tried ignoring him and pushing through, and that sometimes works.  So now we see if it is a training/button pushing thing with me.

So my frustration level is high as I really want to get back out on trail and enjoy riding him, but I am not going to take him out to have a major malfunction out there.  Might get him out on trails with a friend and see if it is an arena sour thing....  Still enjoying him, just wanting to do more.  It will come in time.

After I came home this afternoon we took the kids up to the school to ride their bikes (we have a gravel driveway, and no roads to ride on safely).  Asher decided he wanted to ditch the training wheels, and he did!

I leave tonight on this note shared with me by a teammate -
I ride:

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