I have a 5 year old Hanoverian mare, soon to be 6 in April. She is a sweet heart and has some absolutely fabulous days where she is just using her body well. Almost a year ago I was riding her and I didn’t support her to a turn, she tripped on a pathetic grass root, stumbled, and slipped onto her side and I rolled away. Completely my fault and I was shaken by it, up until two weeks ago I haven’t really cantered her. Of course there were many things in between that prevented me from even riding her; i.e. a huge eye ulcer, trainer problems, working too much, etc.
I moved barns to really be consistent and put my full fledged time into her a little over a month ago. Considering she had just come off of an eye ulcer and moved barns, she settled in well. The new barn has footing and real rings, something my old barn did not and I finally had the confidence to ask for her to canter knowing she wouldn’t trip over something as silly as the root of some grass. She did better than I expected, she was a little fast but I was happy that I she didn’t try anything. More recently I’ve noticed with the colder weather, she’ll have days where she has a very hard time using her hind end going to the right. About two days ago she had no problems at all, but the week before that she had the same difficulties as today.
Going to the left she’s perfect, I hold my hands very steady, I have the outside shoulder, and push her forward and she reaches for the bit. Going to the right is a WHOLE different story, I cannot find the right rhythm, it’s either way too fast or she’s behind my leg. When I have a good pace and push her into my outside rein she totally ignores my leg, and when I enforce it she acts like it’s impossible for me to have her shoulder and turn her at the same time. She’ll just keep going straight until we run into a fence unless I totally contort my body and lean to the inside. When I have the shoulder and can actually turn her, she’s a little counter bent.
At the canter she totally grabs the bit and runs with me, it is absolutely impossible for her to turn. I’ve noticed on the lunge going this direction she has a bit of trouble reaching with her inside hind and pushing off of it. Some days there is no problem, some days it’s a little sore. Her teeth just got done and I’ve had a saddle fitter out, she did have a little lump on her wither from an ill-fitting saddle but I’ve been riding her in a better fitting one. The weather has been off and on, cold to rainy to warm to freezing cold.
I’ve tried my very best to get her mind on me and I lunge her before I ride to warm up her muscles before I get on. I would really like ANY suggestions or possible problems that could be happening. Any exercises for strength, just anything. I’ve had a jumper trainer get on her since I was in the ring during one of her lessons and she did that same exact thing with her. This used to be her good side and the left lead was her bad side, but that was also a little over a year ago. I’m worried it’s a physical issue or maybe she’s growing or maybe it’s just because she needs more muscle in her hind end or maybe she’s not balanced, I’m at a loss. I will be trying out some new trainers since I did leave my old barn and the new barn is more hunters than dressage. Thank you so much for reading so much, lol!