On the left lead, Speedy is getting more and more balanced in the counter canter and when we make the turn into the volte, he really drops his haunches and sits for the volte (relatively speaking). The right lead is a whole different thing.
I suspect that I am working on movements that come in Second and Third level, but I am too lazy to really go and look it up. I am know I am not pushing him too hard as we do what he can do, and then I move on to something else.
The trouble we're having is making a 20-meter half circle in the counter canter on the right lead. Speedy just can't quite hold it, so he has started to do an absolutely lovely flying change. It's beautifully done, but we need to be able to hold the counter canter.
What I've started to do is go back a few steps to show him that I actually want him to hold the right lead canter. Instead of half circles, I am doing the shallow loop that comes at the end of First Level Test 3. I am also doing quarter circles up and down the one long half so that he gets a break and a quick release by going back to the right. My court is only about 45 meters so I can only get a few quarter circles, but then I simply repeat the turns down the other long half.
I am using the counter canter to improve his canter work, which is actually working. I just need to make sure I don't inadvertently teach him to make automatic changes on the right lead since he needs to be able to hold the counter canter in the serpentine. I am very conscious of keeping my right hip forward, maintaining a little right bend, and riding him right leg to left rein.
Any advice out there?