After the Piaffe, Alfredo asked, “do you want to try Passage?” What the heck, why not? So he gets the long, light weight bamboo pole and has me line up by the rail. We stop, and Alfredo stands by Finn’s shoulder. He looks me straight in the eye and says,
“Do not let the horse pass my shoulder. Now: what did I just say?”
“Uh…do not let the horse pass your shoulder. O.k., I won’t let him pass your shoulder.”
“O.k.! Now make him to trot! Slowly, but with energy! Trot! But don’t pass my shoulder!”
Believe me, this is not so easy. Maintain a very collected trot, keep the energy, don’t let him walk, don’t let him get above the bit, and DON’T pass Alfredo! Meanwhile, he puts the pole in front of the horse and the horse taps it with his front legs. Very strange, but I think Finn actually found it to be a bit of a game, and almost immediately, we get some big bouncy steps of passage. A few steps, and it was, “Very good! Free walk and rest.” A little walk break, and we did it again.
And that was our introduction to Passage. A little passage, a little free walk, and do it again. Good times! I look forward to building up more strength in Finn and more ability to collect, and then coming back in a few months and trying it again and seeing how much better we are.
Video here – camera work a bit shaky, but you get the idea.