Despite a lackluster show at a schooling show a few weeks ago where we did Second 1 (it was the infamous ‘chicken’ arena that undid Faxx a few months ago) I am happy with how she is working pre-Champs. She is showing First level at the championships – Great American Insurance Group Championship class on Saturday morning indoors and the Southwest Dressage Championship Sunday morning outdoors in the Ottoa Sport Arena that is rumored to have cost $80,000. I really hope I don’t like it TOO much, since I will never have one at home! LOL!
I still think she could do the leg yield from K to X better, but her canter work just keeps getting better and better. One big lightbulb moment in my lesson this week was when Marie had me do ‘diamond’ circles in an effort to keep her shoulders from drifting out. Also to keep encouraging her with my outside leg to get her to step under herself better. She is getting very, very fun to ride.
Faxx has been on light duty – how is it that I am not even working but I have no extra time to ride more? But he’s been a good boy when I’ve ridden him.
I am spending a lot of time driving all around town meeting with career coach, meeting with former co-workers to network/practice interview, painting several rooms in my house and putting the final touches on my guest bath — hung the window valance that I made today and the shower curtain is next. Then I need to find a few decorative accessories to complete the whole thing – but those are things I will jus thave to get when I run across them and have an ‘ah hah’ moment.
Fling continues to do well. I am trying to really push the flying changes – that is what is going to hold her back from the FEI level. She HAS to learn to do multiple ones, and exactly when I ask. Last night I just decided I was going to push it and did not care if it got ‘ugly.’ (Sometimes dressage is not pretty” is something I have heard from several trainers over the years and they are right!) Fling is veyr smart, and once she figures out what i want, she usually does it. I am just in new territory here. So last night I rode in the field and just decided I was going to do a straight line and do flying changes for the entire 800 feet or so of our large field. Back and forth, back and forth. For the first time I felt like Fling and I had a ‘rhythm’ to the changes. And I also kept her much more contained and really ‘micromanaged’ at the canter. And tried to give the new inside rein, which is what I think sometimes blocks her and makes her change late.
I did not try to count strides between changes – we’re a long way from that yet – but I wanted to show Fling we could DO multiple changes, and that she is not ‘done’ when she’s done ONE change and so she has to stay on my seat and not go “whoo hoo”ing after the change llike she really wants to. Basically she has to wait and listen to me, which is a recurring theme in our relationship! 😉 I felt like we’d made a giant step forward at the end of our ride.