She had poles set up for the lesson before mine on Thursday, but I came out in Dressage tack anyway. It was time.
She asked what was wrong. I fumbled for words, but probably should have said something like "Can't get this damn horse straight to save my life." She figured it out pretty quickly after watching us warm up, though.
We spent the first few minutes of the lesson doing shoulder in at the walk, with her walking in front of me saying "more forward than sideways, good, nope, that was sideways, good, good good..." etc. Within minutes, he was straighter than I'd gotten him in a while.
|There's nothing better than a truck in a barn's parking lot, amiright?|
We then moved on to working on his canter. She still wants his canter to be less dolphin-like, and to remedy that, the following worked pretty well:
1. Getting him sharper off my canter aids with a cluck, so he doesn't get "stuck" in place for a moment when he picks up the canter, and he begins with impulsion.
2. Doing a walk pirouette focusing on more forward steps than sideways with the inside hind leg prior to picking up the canter.
#2 was hard, but made a big big difference in the quality and collectedness of the canter. Not that we are doing collected canter, but it was not as strung out as it usually is.