Okay soooo, when I first got Zeus he HATED bareback. And I mean hated. He'd go around all giraffe-like, hollowed out, tossing his head, just NOT happy. So I took some time to do some strictly walking trail rides, encouraged him to relax and drop his head, etc. Now three months later, in a HALTER, and then in his new french link, he is amazing! I jumped on bareback in his halter today because it was raining. Warmed up this way. Walked around, than did some trot work. In his halter all I ask is for him to stretch and bend, and if he offers me some sort of collection it is all on his own. So we did all that, than trotted up this hill (okay so in my part of FL, a teeny tiny mound definitely counts as a hill). Blah blah. The rain let up, so I hopped off and put on his bridle. Started trotting again, really wrapping my legs around him and bumping him up with every stride... and he just reached for the bit and for my contact. He was sooooo soft and... buttery (ha ha). So I did some leg yeilding, bending, circles, turns on the forehand and haunches. But it was amazing. I just kept a light conversation going with his mouth and really concentrated on keeping my elbows at my side, sitting on all three points, and cueing him with my seat as well as my hands.
He was BRILLIANT! Now why couldn't he have been this way for my lesson Wednesday huh?
Ha ha, I'm so happy and broud of him! All this bareback! Ahh!