From Endurance to Dressage
Use the Outside Rein for Steering
First of all, I have an outside rein! Why does it seem as though I have to relearn that every other week? For this particular go-round, I was riding Izzy when the realization hit. Last week, I had a great lesson with Chemaine Hurtado, owner and trainer at Symphony Dressage Stables, but I've only just finished wading through the nearly hour-long video she shot. During the video, she said something that really made me think: "keep thinking about renvers; that's your steering!"
After working on the square with haunches in, we took that same idea to the counter canter. Izzy loves to throw in flying changes every time the work gets too hard. In his mind, it would all be so much easier on a true canter. As we crossed the diagonal heading into counter canter, Chemaine reminded me to keep his haunches where I wanted them. In this case, in renvers.
As it's been said before, there was a whole lot of ugly before it got pretty. Pretty might be too strong of a word, but at least I had more control. For a long while, I've focused almost exclusively on his shoulders. While this is super important on Izzy, it's meant that I've neglected his haunches. This has allowed them to start doing some really awkward things such as swinging wide on the turns and falling "out" during the counter canter, which allows him to drop the canter.
Here's a clip from that last lesson with Chemaine talking me through the counter canter and the outside rein.
Someday, when we can put it all together consistently, this horse might turn out to be pretty amazing. Until then, he's a great "teacher!"
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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
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Regional Adult Amateur Competition (RAAC)
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