Speedy tried all of his usual things; fussing to the right, serious head tilt, stiff when tracking left, and so on. Rather than get upset, I just narrowed my focus and tried to get the very best I could from each stride.
Tracking left is becoming a bit of an issue. He is just so dang stiff that direction. (I am wondering if he needs another adjustment by the chiropractor; I need to think about that.) In an effort to get some softness on that left rein, we did more counter canter. I was pretty happy with the result, bone jarring as it was. We did a 20-meter circle on the left lead, crossed the diagonal, and did a full 20-meter counter canter circle at the other end of the arena without losing the canter. And we did it more than once.
It wasn't perfect, but I've only been able to do that exercise ... never. I did manage some counter canter half circles with Christian Schacht in June, but we did a full circle this weekend. And I could feel Speedy's relief when we were back on the correct bend. It helped him see that some bend is a good thing.
Once his trot work was pretty adjustable, I went ahead and asked for the right lead canter. Usually, I sit and then ask with an inside leg at the girth and the outside leg just behind the girth. This time, I simply sat lightly and thought canter ... and was rewarded with a much softer transition. We made a few circles and did a few trot to canter transitions.
Focusing on quality makes it easy to be pleased with the ride!