You can see his excitement...
I was totally not dressed to ride. I just wanted to give him a hug. I had UGGs and legwarmers on, but decided to throw the lead rope over his neck and swing on. There is a small arena where I board him. It's slightly larger than a round pen. I could do like MAYBE two jumps in it, but that would be tight.
I hopped on and walked a few laps both ways. Trot. At first he had a nice easy to sit trot. We went both directions. After a few laps it started getting faster, he wanted to go. good time to work on the sitting trot, I let him go at his pace. I brought him back down to a walk and gathered him up, as much as you can in a halter and lead, and asked for a canter. It took two strides to get there, but after not being ridden for so long, I let it go. We cantered around one lap and I brought him to a walk to reverse.
To the left was even better, but that is expected...he is left handed like his mom. I brought him to a trot for a lap, broke to a walk and picked up the right lead. After two laps I thought simple change in the middle. Now, this arena is small. No, SMALL. As big as his stride is he will only have say three strides to make the change. I was trying it anyway. We were on the right lead, turned diagonally and broke to a trot for the simple change. I sat three strides and cued for the left. Boom. Left lead and we're done. I was thrilled!! I let him canter on for a few strides and let him walk. Next thought? Yup, flying change.
This time, I gathered the, well, reins or lead and asked him to use his back a bit. He understood what I was asking, but the effort was minimal when riding bareback with a halter. I decided to set him up for success and asked for the right lead. He changes to the left easier. One lap around to the right and I turned. I changed his bend and one stride before we needed to change he picked up his left shoulder, changed and continued on his left lead. I was so ecstatic!!! I gave him lots of pats and hugs. He's not as rusty as I thought. I only rode for a like 15-20 minutes and ended on that good note. I hopped off and let him eat some grass. Tomorrow i don't have to work, we will be doing some more arena work and then a good hack. I need to find some small little logs to pop over.