I took Fling to Marie’s today for a lesson. It is my last ‘prep’ before the schooling show on Sunday. We worked on getting her straighter – i am tending to bend her too much – really more ‘pulling on the inside rein’ than bending. So Marie has been having me do two things to get her straighter…think about riding her more with my outside seatbone and put her in slight renvers. It is working and has made my flying changes better. It also helps to KEEP her from changing early in 4/1 where you have to do half pass from D to E and then keep the counter canter along the side and through the corner before doing a flying change at C.
So once we worked on getting her straigher and ‘carrying more’ at trot and canter, we worked on the movement from 4/1 where you have to go across diagonal in medium, but then do six or seven strides of collected trot over X. Marie said I need to think half steps and really think about ‘bouncing’ her a bit with my seat to get move activity not just slower. We then worked on the similar move at the canter where you do a 20m circle and show show six or seven strides of very collected canter between the quarterlines.
And then we put it all together and it was magic. I have been riding her mostly in the field with only an ‘approximate’ idea of letters and distances. The half pass from D to E/B is pretty steep – but was not difficult at all to make it to the letter. And then we put it all together — the half pass to flying change and then immediate circle with very collected canter from quarterline to quarterline. And it was magic. Effortless. Clean flying change. She came ‘back’ to me easily and she felt like she could do canter on the spot when I asked for very collected canter between the quarterlines.
When we finished the sequence I stopped and threw my arms around her neck and almost cried. And then she got a peppermint. Those are the moments you live for. And make you so grateful for these generous creatures.