My horse Apache was at a friends place getting some training. He had been there for almost three weeks and basically now we only have to work on me to maintain what he has learnt.
We ended up having some lack of float issues and I didn't want to continue paying for him to stay at her place until we sorted the issue out.
So she came up with the plan that since we work at the same place and happened to be working the same day. Today she rode him to work then I rode him home while she drove my car.
It was a two hour ride and though I got sunburnt totally worth it! I nearly fell off when he spooked at concrete by sucking back them, leaping sideways, then jumping/bucking forwards in quick succession. I have never seen him react so bad to anything and my only thought whilst nearly falling was how am I going to get back on without looking really unco-ordinated. Thankfully it didn't come to that.
Before that though I had been trotting along the flat parts beside the road which were about 100m to 300m long. I was riding him with a very light contact just so my reins weren't completely loose in front of me if he chucked a spack. Anyway we were trotting along when I'm 99.99% sure I felt him stretch down into into the contact and hold it for a few strides before going back to riding on the light contact. I was surprised because I wasn't encouring him to do it. I looked down when I felt him stretch forward and though his trot wasn't bad to begin with it got a lot smoother and nicer to ride. At first I thought he was just trying to go down and escape the contact but he stopped and held it nicely for a few strides.
I was so excited because my friend says he has had some sort of training though it wasn't very good. She felt someone tried to do dressage with him but didn't do it properly and it was just the whole get the headset and hey presto your doing dressage. So he doesn't tend to accept contact well and instead of using himself properly he just has his head in the air and breaks at the poll and he looks stiff while doing it.
I was so excited, there was no stress on him to try and get it and it was like he he went (lightbulb) I know what your asking now tada.
Just had to share with someone Does this mean he is likely to start picking it up for short periods of time? Or could it have been a one off awesome moment?