|Clearly ready for his nap|
I've been in the habit lately on using the children's saddle pads to brighten things up. Perhaps that's why we had such a successful ride. Nothing says pro trainer like purple and green swirls with intermixed sparkly bits.
I actually didn't start asking for the softening on purpose. There were a couple times while we started trotting where Blake did the whole exaggerated softening thing, and I suddenly remembered "Hey, you know how to do that!" so I asked him for it, and he didn't even hesitate. It was lit. Not only that, but he was actually okay with hand contact. The outside rein was there, and he was chill. Granted, I was giving huge releases with the inside rein, but he didn't buck like he usually does.
I opted not to try at the canter due to the fact that trainer had me lengthen my stirrups, and I could barely sit. He was slow, but we only broke once.
Jumping was simple as well, just a pole and two fences two times through with some transitions. I got left behind coming to the second first fence the first time through. Second time, I missed my lead, but eh, it was otherwise fine.
Bonus: I beasted my final crit which I had directly after my lesson. Not bad considering the fact that I hate my model and now have to use it for the rest of the semester.