From Endurance to Dressage
I don't have any great new photos or media to share to prove it, but oh my, is that big brown horse ever coming along!
I keep track of what I do each day at the barn. On my calendar, I note who I rode and for how long. I also jot down whether it was a good ride or whether someone had a bad day. I was looking back over my calendar for the past few months and noted that Izzy has boatloads of stars and smiley faces next to his name.
When I get on him now, he starts out sighing and snorting as his ears flop from side to side. Most days I have to boot him a bit to convince him that yes, I genuinely would like a trot.
From the first step we take, I ask for a stretch down. We stretch down at the walk, and then we stretch down at the trot. And now that he can, I insist on it all the time. He no longer trots around with a hollow back. His back has suppled up so much that he is physically able to stretch.
Now that his back is looser, we're tackling his stride length. It's not pretty, but I am asking for more, more, more at every stride. He now stays soft in the bridle as I ask that inside hind leg to step deeper and farther. We don't have that longer stride yet, but it's coming.
The canter is also getting more balanced. As with Speedy, I am starting to insist that he step into the canter with his hind end instead of launching forward with his face. We can now do lots of trot/canter transitions without him panicking and charging through my hands.
I have a pretty full show calendar planned out this year for Speedy. so there isn't any room for Izzy. He still has some tension issues to deal with anyway. I have my eye on next year though. If he keeps improving at the rate he's going, we might have a decent chance to be successful at a show.
Horses though ... they love to surprise us!
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 Second Level. He is a 2008, 16'3 hand warmblood gelding. His Rheinland Pfalz-saar International (RPSI) name is Imperioso.
CDS Sapphire Rider Award
Third Level: 63.514%
Third Level: 62.105%
2021 Show Season
(r) Ride-a-Test Clinic
(Q) Must Qualify
2021 Pending …
11/7-11/8 SB (***)
2021 Completed …
10/24-25 SCEC (***)
2021 Qualifying Scores
Regional Adult Amateur Competition (RAAC)
2nd Level Qualifying
3 Scores/2 Judges/60%:
Score 1: 60.610% Bhathal
2nd Level Qualifying
5 Scores/4 Judges/61%:
Stuff I Read