Monday, October 3, 2011

Last Week's English Lesson

Our lesson with L was rescheduled to last week and we were riding English once again (still don't know how R tricked me into this LOL). Anyway we started with our usual warm up on the flat then R sent us out to do some dressage serpentines. We started doing them at the trot, then moved onto the canter with simple changes. Her simple changes were pretty good, but not her best. We had not worked on simple or flying changes in a while though. Then we moved on to the flying changes, which I knew were not going to be pretty.

As a former reining horse, Satin can do flying changes in her sleep. But, now that she is holder she has stiffness and arthritis issues in her hocks and she also tries to rush into them too much at times causing her to miss the change behind. This is what happened the first time through. The second time through we got one perfect change, but the rest ended up being late or simple.

R said part of the problem was she was swinging her butt out behind and suggested practicing with a bit of an exaggerated bend down the straightaway, since the changes were supposed to be in the middle) and not letting her change. We did this several times until we got the response we were looking for, then R said "Okay now continue around the turn and let her change". She executed a picture perfect change after that, though not at center line, but that's okay.

Afterwards we moved on to course work. Our warm up course was the outside line to the single diagonal jump that began our course in our previous lesson. She refused the first time to the line then went over with no problem. After two times of this R made the single diagonal a bending line going to the first jump of the outside line, as we had also done in the previous lesson. Then she added another line that was probably about one hole higher on the opposite side of the ring. Satin sailed over it like a champ. I was quite proud, especially because it was her first time over this line and she sometimes refuses a new jump added mid course on the first attempt. After that R added the roll top as a single jump on the diagonal. We had done the roll top before, but this time it was a bit higher then in the past. Satin once again sailed over it like it wasn't even there.

Near the end of the lesson we were both jumping through the course quite smoothly, and both R and I were quite happy with it.

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