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It’s All in the Elbows

March 4, 2010

In my last dressage lesson, we worked on using my elbows to maintain even and steady contact, especially at the walk. My elbows need to be flexible so that my hands follow Carly’s head. This video with Jane Savoie highlights the concepts I have been working on. As I focused on letting my hand movements originate with my elbows, Carly became more and more relaxed. I tried to get all her body parts moving to warm up – turns on the forehand to get her but moving and leg yielding in and out of circles to make her shoulders move over. She became lighter in my hands and slightly rounded up without me suppling her down. This was a dramatic improvement from previous rides when she would throw her head up when I tried to supple her down. As we started trotting, we lost some of the roundness. I gently tried to supple her down, while thinking of letting my movements originate from my elbows. We bent a little to the left and a little to the right, and she gracefully dropped her head down and came on to the bit. It’s all in the elbows.

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