Thank you, Val!
She has been blogging about her (and Harley's) work at the canter. She's also been blogging about trying movements that might be above your horse's current training level. That got me thinking. So, during my Saturday morning ride, I gave something new a try!
Since I am still learning the correct movement of my seat and elbows for the canter, I decided to try a canter transition from the walk. I reasoned that I might get a better feel for the movement my seat needs to make if done from a walk. My reasoning might be faulty, but I think I'm on the right track.
I started Speedy out at a nice supple walk and asked him for softness with good reach from his hind legs. I pictured in my mind a forward inside leg with an outside leg lightly touching his side. My seat would scoop forward and we would canter. And that's what I did. And Speedy ... cantered! It wasn't perfect. He gave a funny shuffle in the back, but then we were cantering. And it was exquisitely soft. We came back to a few trot strides and then walked. He lengthened his neck and stretched deeply. I gathered him back up and repeated the movement several times. He got better each time.
If you would have suggested even two months ago that I would be riding a submissive pony at the canter from the walk, I would have laughed hysterically. And yet, here we are! If this is just a lucky week, I'll take it. If this is the result of two years of hard dressage work, even better. I can't wait to see where we are in two more years. Bring it on!