As you can see from this photo, the Cruiser is not leading a stressful life. This was yesterday afternoon after taking the saddle off post ride 15ish? We almost made a round circle at the walk one direction(woo hoo!), had nice hindquarter yields and halts each way, did some steps of across and back, and most importantly felt a lot less wobbly at the walk and halt. He’s feeling really solid on mount/dismount/touch all over and in general is very chill about the whole deal. I totally credit the TRT Method Young Horse module for making the process very step by step. By being able to work on the ground work/saddle position patterns all winter long that translate directly to the under saddle work, it has been pretty seamless getting Cruz going again.
He’s still about as wide as a pencil, even though he’s gained 200+ pounds and grown a couple of inches. Currently I think he is around 900-1000 pounds and 15hh but he still has that immature weedy look. He is only 3 though and very leggy, so I think it’s just time and long slow miles to build muscle. The current plan is to ride him 1-2 times per week for 10-15 minutes mostly at the walk, to ground drive him all over my property 1-2 times per week(he’s been doing great driving outside), and do a bit of TRT ground work 1-2 times per week. I’ll reevaluate in a month or so and hopefully add in some riding outside at that point.
I was sort of dreading the whole young horse thing but it’s been surprisingly fun. He is so smart and pretty level headed, which makes it easier, but I’m also enjoying the thinking involved and solving the little training puzzles that come up. We have many miles to go to be reliable transportation and then start real dressage, but we are on the road.