From Endurance to Dressage
And they're correct! When we get one that is. After schooling them for less than a week, we get the change about 50% of the time. I am actually quite pleased with them as I haven't even had a lesson yet. Chemaine Hurtado, owner and trainer at Symphony Dressage Stables, talked me through the aids over the phone, so I've been working on it on my own in preparation for tonight's lesson.
The interesting thing is that all of a sudden, his canter has gotten much more uphill, and the simple changes are getting crisper. I guess that's what happens when you raise your expectations. Getting my saddle adjusted has also helped.
To be completely honest, I was thrilled beyond belief that we even got any changes the first time I schooled them. I was certain it was going to take all fall before we even got one flying change. It took about three asks before he gave me one. When we changed direction, he got it on the second try. I've never asked for flying changes before, so I was over the moon happy that we were able to get any on our first try.
For Third Level, I'll need a flying change across the diagonal. For now, Chemaine suggested I ask for them in the corner. To set him up, I counter canter across the diagonal, half halting to get him as light in the bridle as I can. I change the bend to get him on the new outside rein, and then I switch my seat to the new lead.
He's not changing with my seat aid (yet). I have to do a strong half halt on the new outside rein and scoop with my seat. Chemaine explained it like this: It's being methodical with your aids, so the horse recognizes a canter transition when he hears one. Even if he's already cantering!
That way of thinking about it has helped a lot. The other thing she suggested was to keep cantering even if he doesn't change and just circle around and try it again. When he gives me one, we walk, and I give him a loud and enthusiastic good boy! He knows when he's done something right.
I am super excited to be schooling Third. Who would have thought?
9/12/2018 08:20:54 am
Wow, that's awesome!
9/13/2018 04:42:23 pm
She's really creative when it comes to explaining complicated ideas. They're not so complicated with her. :0)
9/12/2018 09:15:09 am
We are schooling flying changes too - left to right they are always there, right to left we are still figuring them out.
9/13/2018 04:43:11 pm
HAHA! I HOPE he doesn't figure that out!!!!
9/14/2018 07:00:35 am
Lol me too because its no fun! But is apparently a phase some horses will go through...I would like it to stop lol.
I spent 10 years with the same trainer and never once learned how to do a flying change. I've never done one... other than the accidental one's I occasionally get and can't duplicate.
9/13/2018 04:44:04 pm
And ... now YOU know how to do them too. Give it a try on one of your girls!
9/17/2018 05:27:06 am
I am definitely going to use your latest blog post to try to those ideas out! Thank you so much for posting your journey with this!
9/12/2018 03:55:34 pm
That is an amazing very big step to the next level. It is something that only if you have tried to teach a horse and yourself how to do it, that you realize that it takes a lot of previous strength in the horse, and concentration from the rider. Well done !!
9/13/2018 04:45:53 pm
Concentration for sure. We got stuck last night going from right to left, so Chemaine had me pick up the counter counter on a circle (did that make my brain hurt!). Once he was soft on the new inside rein, I asked for a jump and a change, and we finally got it.
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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%: