Friday, October 16, 2015

Slower and deeper

Unfortunately I do not have any photos from our weds night lesson with D, but it was a good one! It was perfectly balanced with frustrations and break throughs...which normally I feel like my lessons with D are more on the frustrated side.

I rode her in the HS Shaped snaffle, not knowing if he would keep us on the ground or jump...Either way the shaped snaffle is ok to jump in just not ideal when she gets strong.

We started where we left off last lesson on flatwork. The walk we got fairly quickly with a lot of "goods" which is always exciting to hear from D. Pushing into the trot she always starts off excitable lately and was just about getting a correct forward with looser/light contact to let her settle into the tempo first. He brought up the dressage pyramid:

He reminded me that this applies more to just the bigger picture but also within every single ride. She needs to have a rhythm and be relaxed before we pick up a contact and ask her to push into a connection. 

So once she did settle into the trot despite being a giraffe, we really worked on getting her connected by slowing the trot without losing energy and riding her deeper (I thought my legs were going to fall off). 

Usually what I am saying in my head to Tillie when we trot.
It is interesting to me the different approaches D uses versus C. D likes to get her slower to connect, C likes to ask me to push her more forward. Both work better depending on the day it seems. When it came time to canter he wanted me trying to prevent her from coming above the bit, so riding a strong half halt just before and do a better job holding the outside rein since she has a tendency to swing her haunches out.

He scolded me on the same thing C did when she breaks and jumps right back into the canter...I need to so better asking her to maintain or when she breaks making her TROT.

He really wanted me focusing on getting an even feel in both reins so long as the inside rein wasnt too heavy. I actually got a nice comment that I am riding her more correctly than I used to flatting, I just need to still focus on my hands when it comes to jumping.

So we did jump a little over a X-rail off a circle. I got scolded again when he said to jump that Tillie wanted to trot off above contact/on no contact..."Jumping should be the same as flatwork!!!! My biggest pet peeve is when that gets thrown away as soon as jumps come in the mix."

I died a little inside.  

But we took a lap, got connected and he had me use the turn/bend to soften her. He also said I need to be more supportive right to the base so she doesnt drop her shoulders. So here lies my issue.

D said my hands when I jump raise higher and come back...I need to use my body more to balance her without throwing away my hands. This concept is so amazingly simple. Putting it into practice is another thing.

All in all I walked away knowing my homework - jump all the things and do it repetitively over small things correctly to fix the leaning on my hands and my own issue with my hands.


  1. jumping quietly on a circle like that has been so beneficial for me - glad to hear you got some good takeaways on how to keep working at it on your own! and yea i really struggle with how different his and C's directives can be sometimes, but both get excellent results so i just go with it haha.

    1. For me its just what should I do on my own time when not under either of their guidance you know? **Sigh** I think with Tillie its a day by day thing lol

  2. I have the same problems with my hands coming up the closer I get to a jump. I've been working hard on bringing my shoulders up and back instead and chanting "Hands low!" to myself. It is HARD though!