I have been trying for almost three days now to upload a stinkin' video to you tube to accompany this post. SO obviously there won't be one yet but one should be coming. I thought I would post and keep everyone  updated without video instead of keeping everyone waiting. 

Pogo and I have been concentrating on our "faux-ssage" and it actually has been going really well. Due to my laziness there has been a tack change in the bit department: I normally ride in a KK with a roller link which he had been seeming to like (we started in a big rubber snaffle, he didn't seem to like that, transitioned to a mullen mouth happy mouth, not as bad but could be better, then to a french link that was great then we tried the KK and that was better). My older gelding who's dressage bridle we stole, goes in a hollow mouth loose ring (and talk about fussy, this horse is the reason I have a bit collection...a hollow mouth is the ONLY bit he will consistently connect to, could be worse I guess!)  Honestly, Pogo really doesn't seem to care either way but I'm getting good work out of him with it so I might keep up with that. I think most importantly I stuck a flash on him and that probably is making the biggest difference.

After our few days off and a few more days of faux-ssage, he is understanding the concept of a connection, and as he warms up is stretching down into the contact instead of rooting through my hands. I mean, we still have a long way to go for sure but it's a start. Every day we are getting quicker to accept the contact and establishing it for longer periods of time, so I think all of this should come around quickly....

OK I am realizing I do have pictures and other fun stuff to post (sorry this is going to be a long one, but a fun one!!!)
I am sure this looks very familiar to a lot of you...Obviously this is focused on dressage, but I think it outlines the basics of every discipline. Lucky for most TBs, Pogo included, rhythm comes easy (it says with energy and tempo below,  and usually, it's not an issue to have your TB stepping up into it's tracks!). 

Next is relaxation, harder for some than others. Pogo is an internalizer for sure and to the onlooker seems totally unphased by a lot. This is true most of the time, when he is truly relaxed, adding outside leg can mean canter, could help for balance down a long side, if I shift my weight is signaling to move over, etc. HOWEVER he can be going around the exact same way but I feel underneath me he is not comfortable with something and the outside leg can signal an explosion...but it's not until something changes from the normal aids that this is triggered. He is a baby,  and only undersaddle for a month so let's not get focused on that! For the most part  he is relaxed.

Ta-da CONNECTION where we are plateau-ing for right now.  Anyway we don't need to talk much about that, you will see in this video that I am fighting to upload all about where we are at with that. Anyway, I thought it would be good to share this classical pyramid, I know some people tend to forget the paths we need to take in order to get to a fully trained animal :)

I also wanted to share a video, shared with me by my friend Jenny of a Steuart Pittman Clinic....dressage for OTTBs
I won't lie, I have not yet had the time to watch the whole thing but I did watch the first part of it and he gives some good insight to the classical training pyramid and he is just AWESOME with TB's so I watching this whole thing is on my agenda real soon. I like how there is an array of training levels in the arena, some schooled and competed while others are fresh off the track as of a few months ago. Anyway, fun stuff and Steurt is great!

And lastly, here are some photos from Pogo's first outside escapades....
Finally, the highly anticipated videos of Poggio!!!

Last time through the chute!

Second attempt at canter :)

More of the left lead, as that was the intention of the first cantering video....

Photo taken 1/27/12
Photo taken 1/27/12