Knots makes further progress with dressage

Another day, another attempt at dressage progress.

Friday Maggie and I hauled over to Sarah’s for some dressage skillz. We are getting to be pros at hauling, so we managed to spend most of our time trying to groom the ponies instead of being late.

We even arrived early, and had the horses working on the lunge line by the time Sarah arrived. I was working Knots in the side reins and trying to push him into the bridle on the ground. He wants to suck back when he feels the pressure on the reins. I didn’t do any cantering on the line, just some forward trotting.

We chatted with Sarah a bit and told her a bit about the horse Maggie was riding, then I started pumping Sarah’s brain about riding with side reins.

I remember her mentioning riding him in side reins often as he learns to use his back better, but I couldn’t remember the specifics. Basically, mount with the side reins unattached. Then focus on pushing him forward into the side reins. Sit up tall (always lol). She also suggested I keep up my contact and forward forward forward.

We walked and trotted and cantered in her nice sand arena (with a slight hill too!), which made Knots tired and try to break to the canter. I worked hard at getting as much trot as possible without breaking into the canter. We also spent some time on straight lines and escaped the safety of the 20m circle (as an aside… who would have ever thought of 20m circles as safe?).

We then took a short break and worked on cantering. Sarah was very pleased with Knot’s acceptance of my leg during the cantering. His haunches were drifting in, and I was able to move him over without a change in the rhythm! I didn’t quite get how magical this moment was, but Sarah pointed out she had never seen it happen before. I try not to argue with professionals 🙂

After the canter work we walked around a bit and chatted with Sarah a bit more as we untacked and showered the horses. Then it was time to run home and take care of a random injury. Just another day in the life.

Dogs are not very helpful.

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