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Changing Things Up

March 14, 2011

Many things have happened since my last post in both the dressage and hunter world.

Carly and I have been working hard at dressage and plan a schooling show in two weeks.  We’ll do Intro B and Intro C, which has a little canter in.  I think we have the basics of a intro level dressage frame and forward impulsion.  We did a practice test at home and scored a 70%.  We need to work a bit more on flexion and picking up canter.  All good things to work on in the coming weeks.


Our issues with responsiveness have been ongoing.  Using the whip to back-up my leg has only induced bucking (which she never did under saddle until about 9 months ago, and will do now almost every time I use the whip).  She finally acted out like this in a dressage lesson and my instructor suggested I hold the whip like a driving whip and whoosh it above her ears.  Worked like a charm – she cantered with great enthusiasm around the ring.  I took it one step further and ditched my spurs.  Now, just holding the whip this way can induce canter.  In fact, we accidentally did a halt to canter transition the other day!


In the hunter world, I am the one with the problem.  I find it difficult to switch between dressage and hunters and the different types of contact.  I have been working hard at remembering my trainer’s number one rule: knuckles to her neck.  I did well with implementing this today and Carly happily loped around the jump course with clean and easy changes.  Again, no spurs!


I have a few other things that I am working on:  a better two point position is high on my list.  I have been working on squatting down in the saddle more and letting my butt move up and down and keeping my shoulders still.  I’ve been working on two point with stirrups to improve this.


To sum it all up, lots of things are going right for us now and we plan to keep on working on all these things.




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