From Endurance to Dressage
Well ... it didn't work quite as well as I was hoping, but I did get to watch myself schooling Speedy G without the aid of a trainer or friend. After riding for 30 to 40 minutes I eagerly raced home to watch my footage. Unfortunately Speedy G and I spent more than half of the time outside of the camera's viewfinder!
I did a serious amount of editing, but here's just under two minutes of our ride. We started out with a bit of walking warm-up and then moved on to circles, canter transitions, and changes of directions. None of the changes of direction made the "cut" as they were all done off camera.
Do I like any of it? Yes! We have some real moments of soft and round, and my position is hugely improved. Unfortunately, Speedy G wasn't giving me some of the nicer canter work that he had been giving me recently. I could feel that he was a bit heavy in front and the video confirmed it.
Please don't think that I think this is fabulous work. This video shows big improvement over what we could do last summer, but we have a long way to go. I am just putting this out there for other lower level adult amateurs who want to see that everyone struggles. Do I dislike some of it? Yes! Now that Speedy is getting softer I do need to start shortening my reins, and I need to work on pushing him forward to the bit. I tend to ask for softness with my hands and I let him get behind my leg. And while this is incorrect, it was what he and I needed to do. Now that he knows that I will be soft, I need to start riding with a slightly firmer contact.
I will set up the tripod again, but I think I'll mark the visible area with cones so that we stay in the camera's view finder!
8/21/2011 01:57:23 am
What a cool idea! Clever girl. You both look very relaxed!
8/21/2011 05:55:54 am
We're getting there! Each week is better than the one before. Today's ride was fantastic. With no camera to be aware of, I was probably paying more attention to my riding and not what the camera was recording!
8/21/2011 12:06:07 pm
The canter-trot transitions are looking really nice! So is Speedy's relaxation and acceptance of his job. Your position looks great, too!
8/21/2011 01:19:51 pm
Val - kind words! But .. we're definitely still a work in progress. I LOVE to watch others ride. It is so helpful to see how other riders achieve connection, stay balanced, and deal with fussy horses. I HATE to see myself ride, but it is helpful.
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About the Writer and Rider
I am a lifelong rider.
I began endurance riding in 1996 where I ultimately completed five, one-day 100 mile races, the 200-mile Death Valley Encounter, and numerous other 50, 65, and 75 mile races. I began showing dressage in 2010.
Welcome to my dressage journey.
About Speedy G
Speedy went from endurance horse to dressage horse. After helping me earn a USDF Bronze medal in the summer of 2020, he is now semi-retired. Speedy is a 2004, 15'1 hand, purebred Arabian gelding. His Arabian Horse Registry name is G Ima Starr FA.
Izzy was started as a four-year old and then spent the next 18 months in pasture growing up. I bought him as a six-year old, and together, we are showing at the lower levels. He is a 2008, 16'3 hand warmblood gelding. His Rheinland Pfalz-saar International (RPSI) name is Imperioso.
National Rider Awards
State Rider Awards
State Horse Awards
CDS Sapphire Rider Award
Third Level: 63.514%
Third Level: 62.105%
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