Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Jump for Joy!

Zeus jumped his first fence today!

I cheered from the sidelines. Sort of.

Zeus is in the process of learning to lunge.

What's a lunge?

It's when you step forward with one leg, hands in the air, you can do it with me now, channel your inner Richard Simmons....
Just kidding. He is one happy dude.

Anyway, lunging a horse involves a really long leadline - a lunge line - which is about 30 feet or so. Basically, the horse works in a circle with you at the center, calling the shots using the lunge line and in some cases, a lunge whip. (Note: I never use a lunge whip ON the horses, just to flick in their direction if they need some encouragement. With Zeus, I don't even use one - he doesn't need it!)

Zeus didn't have a clue how to lunge when I got him. It took many weeks of work before he would even go in a circle without screeching to a halt, panicking, or just turning in towards me because he didn't know what else to do. I'm happy to say, he's a smart cookie, and is now lunging better than Richard Simmons.

Can you imagine that guy with a lunge whip? Look out, America!


I put a teeny crossrail in the ring today, small enough that he could walk over it, which we did together. Once he was warmed up and did well over some ground poles, up and over we went! (Email peeps: there's a video here!)

He was quite pleased with himself! I was too. I'm always surprised at how sensible he is in certain situations.

I will accept accolades now, for handling a camera and a silly horse on a lunge line all at the same time. I did cut the video off quickly, because I really had to be using both hands!

After a few jumps, back to the barn we went for some down time.

Zeus takes his down time very seriously, and since he's only four, he needs naps, much like a toddler.
Whew! That jumping really wore him out. He'll sleep well tonight!

ETA: I just noticed in the pic of Zeus yawning, it looks like he's eating our house. LOL.


Arliss said...

Now that I've recovered from the shudders engendered by the Richard Simmons photo, I love this post! Wow, how cool that Zeus is handling the lungeing and small jump so well. Congrats! Good boy! He really is a smart guy.

And I LOVE the yawning pic!

Catherine said...

Richard Simmons! Funny.

Congratulations to Zeus...one small leap for Zeus, one giant leap for KC!

Nice video too. He's so beautiful.

Kim said...

Wow - I can't believe I can finally post! Love, love, love the video of Zeus. What a happy boy. I also love the still of Zeus eating the house. What a great photo. Keep em coming KC!