dancing horses

dancing horses

Saturday, April 7, 2018

Getting Into the Swing

I left the clinic inspired to get back to work. I do much better when I can have a schedule of riding (well anything really). I hate the start and stop that winter requires. So I was ready to use the clinic as a jumping off point for our schooling.

I gave Carmen two days to recover from the clinic. I had grand plans to do some light riding on Saturday but the weather was not cooperative and I had a lot of chores to do around the property.

Monday was a grand day though so I was happy to saddle up and see if we could actually do the thing on our own. As soon as I swung into the saddle I made sure that I was asking her to bend into the corners. It was very interesting because the ask (and sometimes insistence) that she actually bend rather then gawk around got her focussed on me so much faster then I would get in the past.  This led to a very productive schooling session and I was very happy with our work.
A pic from the lesson this week - Carmen is not a fan of those trees
blowing in the wind. 
On Tuesday Julia joined me to ride after work. It was a blustery day and Carmen was in a totally different mind set. This required lost of circles, some clear instructions as to my expectations and a few discussions. However, we rode the whole time with no spooking (just lots of micromanaging) and we ended in a positive place with her swinging through her back and ignoring the certain death that lurked outside the ring. I was worried that I was holding too tight and did my best to let go. I think the short rein is a crutch for both Carmen and I- she seems to prefer having contact then a loose rein. But that is something we need to work on and I made sure I actually practiced some free walk with her. This makes the neck rope invaluable- I can reach down and hold it while letting the rein out.

I love when I can take some learning from a clinic and apply it on my own. It makes me feel more confident that we can actually tackle this dressage thing.

how you look after your servent is insisting on riding
even though it's windy and it's the time you usually are  getting dinner. 



  1. Carmen has grown up so much in the last year - a testament to your patience and guidance :)

  2. That's awesome about her tuning in so much quicker with the bend!

    1. It is. We shall see if we can maintain it.

  3. Step by step, and you can do anything. You're preparing yourselves and doing the work, and you've made so much progress!

  4. It always feels amazing when you can use the things you've learned in a lesson or clinic!!

  5. that's great that you were able to achieve some of the same feelings and outcomes after a clinic. nothing frustrates me more than when i feel that magic with a trainer but then can't recreate it on my own, at least in some fractional way haha

  6. When the teachings from the clinic stay with you then you really know it's a great clinic~!


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