Even though I knew Joey was not in great shape, I needed to make some time for him. And I was itching to ride him, so I loaded him up and headed down the road to a friend's place to ride.
My friend's place has a big round pen in which to ride. I've never measured it, but it's at least 60 feet, maybe more. It's not a great round pen to train your horse from the ground, but it's a nice one to ride in, because the large size makes it less taxing on the horse.
She also has a nice sized arena, with good footing and solid rails. It's a good place to work on cantering circles, and lead departures.
Joey loaded better than he has been, and was pretty quiet on arrival. I was on the look out for any mares, especially ones in heat. We rode in the round pen after a brief longe session. He offered no buck, no foolishness, and was just a little lazy to go into the canter.
We moved over to the arena, and worked on the basics. He did well, but the rust showed initially. He also showed me his conditioning has gone to heck. He cantered better, but he was huffing and puffing quickly. I didn't push it. We focused mainly on transitions from the walk to trot and back down. I want him moving immediately and slowing immediately when I change my energy. He picked it up pretty quickly.
Overall, a good ride. I think I'll be riding over there more frequently. It offers good training facilities, and plenty of distractions and variety. I think that will be good for him and keep him challenged.