Initially we had a few moments where she wanted to push her own agenda, but then she decided it just wasn't worth it. After that, we had an outstanding ride.
We did a lot of trot circles and serpentines today. I used the two jumps in the arena to make my 8 and used nothing but leg to keep her in the circle. At first she wanted to speed up rather than just circle, but I was able to keep the circles small enough that she could only go so fast. Once she figured out the leg wasn't telling her to speed up, she settled in to a nice jog and worked the circles like a pro. I had to keep bumping the inside rein to keep her shoulder up and keep her bending, but that should improve with time. The exercise seemed to be a good one for her.
As always, we worked on canter circles too. Just like yesterday I worked her on circles to the right and then worked on something else before going back and working the circles again. Then we switched and did the same thing going to the left. I'm seeing a lot of progress with her canter and she's being much more consistent and staying off her forehand. Like with the circles, I have to help keep her shoulder up, but it's just a bump here and there.
She switched behind once going to the right today, but I've really been paying attention and I can feel when she's going to switch. So today when we were cantering, once I felt her start thinking about switching, I pushed her forward and she stayed correct.
We rode barefoot again today and she was fabulous. :)
In other news, I'm finally getting around to reading Cross Train Your Horse by Jan Savoie. There's a western dressage clinic not far from me in May that I'm thinking about auditing, so it inspired me to take the book off the shelf and get to reading.
|So far, so good!|
There are quite a few shows in the area with western dressage classes, but apparently there's usually only one rider in the class. It has already been defined by the USEF as a discipline for Morgans, and they even have their own rules and tests. The parent organization, the Western Dressage Association of America, will recognize shows and offer awards with the goal of USEF recognition. I think it might be something fun to try!