From Endurance to Dressage
Canter and More Canter
More 5-Day Challenge tomorrow …
Right now, everyone is cantering! Sydney is cantering to the right, sort of, and Speedy is counter cantering. Somehow, both my boys ended up needing canter work at the same time. Speedy's canter work is proving to be way more fun, though!
Thanksgiving break, all four and a half days of it, was filled with the most perfect riding weather possible. And that's what I did, ride. Both boys (plus my BO's boy) were out every day for rides. We haven't been that consistent since summer. Normally, both boys get ridden three days a week, but five days straight (including Wednesday) was like boot camp!
Knowing that Speedy can get a bit ring sour if worked too many days in a row, I changed up his work each day so that it was fun and exciting. We did lots of 10-meter figure eights, figure eights on a large rectangle, and lots of other changes of direction. During all of that, I worked on the counter canter as it is the one exercise that has really seemed to improve the quality of Speedy's canter work.
On Saturday, he gave me some of his best work ever. I am so pleased with how he is holding the counter canter for longer and longer. I started a couple of weeks ago with a very shallow loop down the long side. Each ride, I made the loop bigger and bigger until it was a full serpentine.
I love how he has figured out that when we return to the "correct" bend he needs to rebalance. I can feel him really rock back and lift his front end to return to the correct bend. None of this work is perfect, of course, but he's learning how to hold the canter lead AND bend in the direction of travel without falling on his forehand. His "try" has been amazing!
I am really looking forward to the 2014 show season. Our scores might not wow! anyone at First Level next year, but I know he's trying. That's worth a lot to me!
12/4/2013 09:16:45 am
Thanks, Lauren. I know we'll get at least some of them because we weren't too shabby at Training Level (up to 67% in a USDF Championship class). I just hope we can start getting them before the end of the season. ;0)
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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%
2023 Show Season
(r) Ride-a-Test Clinic
2023 Show Schedule
2023 Completed …
2023 Qualifying Scores
Regional Adult Amateur Competition (RAAC)
Qualifying Training Level
3 Scores/2 Judges/60%: