When my lesson was over, I sat on the bottom rung of the fence with Izzy standing by Speedy. We watched the next rider for a while just so that Izzy could have some non-working time to stand in the arena without feeling any pressure. Little by little he relaxed and even got a sleepy look in his eye.
Tracking right is more complicated. Since Izzy wants to carry his haunches to the left, which would be out, I have to be vigilant about keeping his haunches in without pushing them too far in. He also wants to fall in with his shoulders which means I have to open the outside rein to draw his shoulders out.
Like always, my thought was okay - that's not doing anything. And then out of nowhere I pushed my right seat bone down and to the left. All of a sudden, I felt Izzy move his shoulders into my open, outside rein. D'oh! Chemaine has told me what to do so, so many times, but until my body has a visceral connection with the words, I don't truly get it.
We didn't get to work on it as much as I wanted to, but I have enough information to continue on my own. To help maintain the right lead canter, I'll need to do three things: pick up the lead slightly counter bent to make sure the shoulder stays in. Once he's cantering comfortably and relaxed, I can slowing straighten him while "guarding" his haunches from falling out. As he relaxes into the straiter position, I can then ask for some inside bend by opening my outside rein and pushing his shoulder out with my inside seat bone.
Our next lesson is tentatively scheduled for early December. I am already looking forward to what Chemaine can teach us next!