This past Sunday, fellow blogger, Emma, kindly trailered Tillie and I to a dressage lesson. Tillie walked right on, stood like a lady and was a pleasure overall to handle. She did have a miner mare moment when she attempted to eat Isabelle when Isabelle was unloading for her turn...Ah mares.
Emma also snapped a few short clips for us (below)! Knowing this was only our 6th or 7th ride back into work, C had us work on starting over. She fondly said time off can be a blessing in that you get to have a blank canvas...and I couldn't agree more since I know I was getting a bit frustrated around the time she needed stall rest.
Below is a list of things we worked on (probably more for me to remember):
- Relaxing my lower leg down and only using it "quickly" on and off not just holding.
- Keep Tillie higher, not letting her bury herself low and in her shoulder so much
- Keep the tempo she has on the loose rein the same as when putting her together
- Stirrups more on the ball of my foot
- Lower leg back more underneath my body
- Sit more on pelvis to feel the "triangle" of points of my seat (I tend to sit too far back on my butt bones which drives her forward and down on the forehand)
- Make a deliberate post (rather than the back to front shimmying I was doing) and sit lighter to not get behind the motion.
- Dont worry so much about the transition being perfect. Should be deliberate and pushing from behind.
- Tracking left she was tighter - I need to step more left, left shoulder back, inside hand slightly higher, outside right hand softer, lower and allowing her to bend.
- Let her fall in on the smaller circle so she can rebalance herself, push her out with the inside left leg to be used on and off with each post (not staying on)
- Tracking right, much softer and keep the left shoulder straighter to prevent over-bending.
- Let the trot build to the canter, transitions have been so exciting because of me not giving enough warning at the trot and essentially surprising her into it
- Dont sit the canter, stay lighter and out of the saddle
- Inside leg back and on and off to get the inside hind leg to "jump"
- If she breaks, dont rush back into the canter, deliberately trot and correct.
I forgot my dressage saddle, so in these I am riding in my new jump saddle (PF).