Thursday, 26 November 2015


Even though it seems like I am working on the same thing each lesson, I am surprised that each lesson seems so different with new issues, missing some old issues (hooray!) and a different horse showing up now.

We are continuing to work on quietly asking for her to seek the bit with lateral work, engaging the hind end and relaxing over the back and at the poll. Her head position is past the vertical and my contact is focussed on being there in a soft and supportive manner.  I am looking for Schwung where you get a swing in the step from a horse using the hind end and transmitting that power from the back to the front.

As I am riding I try to remind myself to be thinking 'back to front', not 'front to back".

I try to keep this in mind every ride.

On this occasion, her inability to bend left became the theme and really made shoulder-in to the left a total mess. Coming around the corner Savvy just wanted to bend out and skip the corner altogether. My first instinct at this point is to pull her back into the corner with the right rein while my coach gasps in horror, saying "No!!! Left rein open!" I cannot seem to get her to yield to my inside leg effectively though in this situation to make that open inside rein look like a good idea.

We used 10-meter circles in each corner to help get the correct bend before shoulder-in down the long side.

We had a few good runs though and everything to the right was so nice it made up for my exhausted left leg. (Tip: dressage whip is not just decoration and can be used to save left leg. Now to just learn how to hold the damn thing in my left hand.)

We ended the lesson with another canter attempt and succeeded getting it without getting too playful or rushing the trot to get into it.

Covered in stains and too cold to bath - can I just lesson with the blanket on so no one sees? :(

Overall a great ride--and to top it off, it was a snowy, windy day and the fabric arena occasionally flapped and snapped unexpectedly but pony did not loose her marbles!


  1. huh i've never heard the term 'schwung' - but that's pretty much exactly what my trainer wants to see every ride too. Savvy sounds like she's doing so well!

    1. Yup, my studies in dressage has also included learning German. :) Another fave: 'Rueckengaenger' - straight, supple, balanced horse whose back swings.