Why is the right side so different from the left side?
Citrus is like two different horses while being ridden. On the ground, he goes both ways easily, is mountable from both sides.... but under saddle, his left side is almost completely rick solid stiff compared to his touch-the-hairs right side. Why are his two sides soooooo different.. I know you have to teach a horse on each side because their brain halves do not communicate, but this seems a bit much. Any ideas on how to soften the left side?
I currently do flexing on both sides on the ground and then in the saddle. I also overexagerate releasing the cues. We bend in circles, but the arena has barrels, a fake trailer and some jumps set up, so maybe I will do the round pen for bending circles so that I do not have to time my cueing just right to avoid barrels..... I bet I have miscued him, by not releasing quick enough.
I would consider skipping the right side altogether, for now, but I like him to end on a good note, and when I get frustrated with the left side, feel like I am getting no where, I have him do a few to the right so we both feel successful.
"Equine-facilitated therapy employs a form of biofeedback for practicing self-awareness, emotional management, and relationship skills that human role-playing exercises and discussion groups cannot begin to access." Linda Kohanov (The Tao of Equus)