From Endurance to Dressage
I rode with a less gimmee, gimmee attitude on Wednesday and rode instead with a show me what you can do vibe. The results were definitely better.
Sydney is really rockin' the keep your rhythm exercise to the left. Just by slowing my seat, or speeding up my posting, he matches his rhythm to my own; sweet! Even at the canter he is willing to stay soft and steady.
On Wednesday, I did a little work to the left, but concentrated most of my time tracking right. Dr. Jekyll definitely has a Mr. Hyde under that sweet brown-eyed face. And Mr. Hyde obviously hates maintaining a steady rhythm. I didn't even attempt to canter to the right. What was the point when the trot work isn't steady enough?
Here are our issues: We have no bend to the right and once we approach the vast openness of the middle of the arena, Sydney's RUN instinct kicks in. Riding with a loopy rein makes these two things quiet difficult to fix. I am not going to say that I rode through it perfectly, but I did my best.
I realized that If I really looked ahead to where I was going and focused on my "marks," I could get the bend, but it took a lot of corrections with the outside rein and a ton of inside leg. He finally gave me one or two decent circles that were fairly consistent in their shape and rhythm.
I totally get why Lois wants me to do this exercise. The more that Sydney can maintain the rhythm and bend without me micro-managing him, the easier it will be to ride him as I increase the contact. If he can't work with rhythm with a loopy rein, he is just going to be HEAVY with contact.
Good thing I have all the time in the world!
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%
2022 Show Season
(r) Ride-a-Test Clinic
2022 Show Schedule
2022 Completed …
(*) Tehachapi 5/22/22
(*) Tehachapi 7/24/22
(***) Tehachapi 8/28/22
2023 Qualifying Scores
Regional Adult Amateur Competition (RAAC)
3 Scores/2 Judges/60%:
Score 1: 62.115%