She is going pretty consistently on the bit which is steadily improving despite her very stargazing type nature. She will walk and trot on the bit with a nice light contact during circles, figure eights, lateral movements... there are some slight inconsistencies at the halt, walk, trot up and down transitions.
The trot-canter transition is still horrendous! Out in the field at home she is better... or when she is excited she picks it up perfectly. But if she is in the arena at home or is tired while were out and about she runs and falls into it as if she were totally green and out of shape. She has a beautiful canter even when the depart is aweful. Walk to canter is the same (we gave that a shot just in case she was one of the few that learn better that way). Its also pretty much the same results if you're on the rail or on a circle.
Some things I've tried to improve: *She is in good health, teeth are great.. saddle fits.. she is the same riding bareback.. same with different riders.
Ground work - her transitions are good on the lunge and in the round pen. Her ground work in general is fab. She also does well long lining too.
I've had another rider ride her in the round pen with me on the ground to practice her transitions. Slight improvement here.
I've also tried lateral movements to the canter.. same. Actually after a few attempts her lateral work starts to suffer.
Asking at poles.. between poles... same.
Trotting X's and coming back and asking for the canter a few strides before the jump yeilds slightly better results.
I've tried posting.. sitting.. posting... sitting and then continue sitting the trot and asking (just incase she doesn't like abruptness of sitting to canter? It also helps soften the rider to prepare for the take off and this has helped slightly.
I teach my youngsters canter on a circle with a slight inside bend and outside leg strike off. However there are a few that learn it better when slightly bent to the outside. Same results with her. I've also tried striking off with the inside leg at the girth and a holding outside leg behind the girth.
I've tried asking on a super loose rein (better) and a stronger supporting rein (ok).
9 times out of 10 I won't let her run in to it. If she doesn't get it in two or 3 steps we come back and try again. Some days it won't work and I will make her run into just for the sake of getting her to go forward
I always have spurs and a whip handy but I try very hard to progressively increase my cues. I never go straight to the spur and whip.
She is really inconsistent with the canter depart. Some days of course are better than others. If we are at a show or on a trail she will pick it up great. At home she is relaxed and a bit more lazy. Everything else she is great but she is such a butthead when it comes to the canter transition. Anyone else have any other ideas?