We were grade A Dressage ballers last night, me and this little horse:
|Game face, giraffe face, one and the same.|
After last week's lesson, I thought a lot about what she had me do to get him on my aids. The answer was shoulder in. So I did a lot of that in my warmup, and by the time she got there, he was on my aids and ready to go. He had some moments of really brilliant work, steady in the bridle, with a lengthened neck and open throatlatch, and very free movement through the shoulders and forelegs.
|The wild animal forages for man made horse treats.|
The biggest takeaways from last night's lesson were:
- Even when standing off the horse, my right shoulder is usually higher than the left, which means I sit crooked too. Leveling out my shoulders made an immediate change in the way he went.
- Think less about sitting down on the right and more about not allowing him to drop me into the holes he creates when his back moves away so dramatically.
- He gets me off to the left on the right rein. Shifting weight into my right stirrup and thinking longer on the right side and shorter on the left immediately leveled him out laterally.
- I need to get his shoulders out of the way (to the outside) and engage the inside hind more.
- Reins need to be short enough to have a constant communication with him and my reaction time needs to be quicker.
- Keeping him between my thighs/using my thighs more keeps him from bulging out around turns.
If I can get that kind of work consistently, we could do 2nd level next year. If I can't, I'm going to continue to spend every ride trying to figure out how to get him straight, and I don't want to do that. I want to go farther!
|Communication is key to being a good boarder, especially when you randomly leave your half pad drying on your horse's stall because it smells like a mold farm.|