Gemini - the overbending is explained in my 'essay'. The clinician was asking me to really bend him to the right as this is where he locks, so it was bend to the right, and push him forward at the same time, as Bob seems to think he can't go forward without bracing, and can't soften without slowing ;) I certainly don't always ride him like that! Again as I said - I usually ride him up and out rather than down and in :)
Thank you very very much Anebel!! You are spot on with my position, haha can you tell that my income comes from riding young and green horses! I haven't ridden anything over elementary in months, since I got really cracking on the youngsters. Will have to make an effort to book a few lessons on something more experienced again to get my upright and tidy position back.
As for inconsistently, these unfortunately aren't in sequence. The friend that took them just emailed a whole bunch through in no particular order. That's why there's some very bend to the inside and others a little more up and straight. We were moving his neck radically for the whole lesson, putting it up, putting it down, putting it to the right and then keeping him straighter to the left as he does not block so badly to the left. At home I will as the neck higher and lower through my session, to test if I can put it where I want, but as for lateral bend, I generally only ask at the poll, seeing if I can move the poll left, keep it there, straighten, then right, to test his suppleness and find any blocks there.
Probably not the best set of photo's to judge how I normally have a horse going because they're from a clinic that was significantly different to how I've been working him on my own.
I'll have to see if I can rustle up someone to grab some more photo's when I'm working him at home so you can see the difference.