From Endurance to Dressage
After the excitement of Saturday, Izzy was really relaxed on Sunday. I think the horse I rode on Sunday is the horse that I might get in a few more years, sooner if I am lucky. He wasn't perfect of course, but he was focused and workman-like which is a lot of fun to ride.
He was so good that we did the trot spirals from A to C quickly with no issues. Since that went so well, Chemaine introduced another exercise, a modified leg yield across the diagonal.
This exercise can be started from a 20-meter trot circle at A, tracking left. As we rode through the corner, Chemaine had me think of a slight counter bend. As we rode toward H, she had me think about sending Izzy into my outside rein with my inside leg. By turning my shoulders in slightly, Izzy stepped over neatly with his hind leg into the beginnings of a leg yield.
We came across the short side at C and changed rein across the next diagonal toward K. Since this side was more difficult for Izzy, Chemaine had me simply ride him straight forward, without pushing his hind leg over with my inside leg.
Since Izzy is more difficult to ride to the right, Chemaine had us work on some straightness while tracking right. Using the quarter line, She had me work on keeping him even in both reins, turning my shoulders in whenever I lost his haunches. She also had me add some energy and impulsion to help him stay straighter. The slower he trots, the more wobbly he gets.
We also did more of the "work our way to the other end at the canter" exercise. Izzy is much easier to ride tracking left than he is to the right. To be more effective to the right, I really need to pay attention to my weight aids, the direction of my shoulders, and how much outside rein I am using. My body doesn't want to bend right, and it's much harder for me to get my right seat bone forward.
Chemaine recorded a pretty big chunk of our canter work to the right, including some work on the stretchy circle. The audio is excellent, but the video gets small as I am working my way to the far end of the arena. If you have the time to watch, she has me switch him from one rein to the other which is a really helpful strategy for a horse that wants to be heavy.
If everything goes as planned, Chemaine will be back in mid-October for another casual, drama-free day(s) of lessons. Let me know if you're interested in riding with her. And with that, this clinic write-up is finished!
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%: