My first objective was to be sure forward was well established - no slow steps! I worked at timing my cues with her hind legs so she would step well under herself at the walk. We did a few laps of the arena on a loose rein, and then worked on our softening at the walk while doing circles, serpentines and changes of rein. She softened very well and was stepping nicely under, and we did some nice transitions to halt, and back up to walk, and also some reinbacks. On the circles and serpentines, and in the corners, I worked on bringing her from my inside leg to outside rein while maintaining an appropriate bend. She tends to want to pop her shoulder out when we bend to the left - so I worked on maintaining my outside rein to prevent that. To the right, she is less bendable so I used more inside leg. She responded beautifully! I do need to do some massage on her shoulders and neck and do our carrot stretches to improve her flexibility to the right. It's also been a long time since she's seen the chiropractor (who used to virtually live at our barn with all the issues Maisie used to have), and it may be time for a visit.
Then we moved to trot. We did some long-and-low work to get her energized and forward, and stretching her topline. Then we worked on softening at the trot, and pretty much the same types of things we were working on at the walk. We're not working on lengthening and shortening stride yet - I want her to be somewhat more fit. She did exceptionally well again! Her impulsion is still not where I want it to be, but she's just getting back into work. We also did some trot to walk and walk to trot transitions. Since the impulsion isn't quite there yet, I concentrated on riding forward into the downward transition, as well as the upwards one. She started out falling a bit forward onto the bit as we transitioned downward, so we worked on improving that. I incorporated some reinbacks into the sequence to help her with this. We didn't get all the way to where I want her to be, but without a fit hind end I can't expect that of her yet. She did lighten up, so we stopped there.
Then, as a reward, since Maisie likes to go on the trail, we went for a nice, relaxing trail ride. The bugs, for a change, weren't bad, and we even did a loop through some woods that we've been avoiding lately because the bugs have been so bad. All in all, Maisie is marvelous!