Saturday, May 30, 2009


I had a really nice lesson outside this morning. Two of our babies, Curly and Orvis were turned out in the paddock next to the outdoor ring, and they were so cute, they watched my whole lesson, occasionally seeing in they could bite Werther as I walked by. Werther is totally recovered from his shots now, he was able to come round right away today. Sarah and I talked about show logistics, we decided that I am going to stay at Intro level for one more show. Sarah and my ride times are very close together for this next show, so Sarah will be able to help me some, but I am going to have to be responsible for the bulk of my warm up. I think it will be a good exercise, a little test of my abilities to see if I can find the right balance between too much and not enough. At the Mason City show after Stillwater I am going to do training level 1 and 2 both days.  I won't qualify for regionals, but it is my first year showing Dressage, so I am not really worried about it. Werther was really good at the trot today, Sarah I decided if he is that good at Stillwater I might have to exaggerate my limp so people don't think I'm riding at too low a level!  I got to do a extended trot on Werther today, it was really exciting. He has the best extensions, he doesn't go any faster at all, he just has a lot more air time with his trot step, Sarah says that elasticity is what puts his trot at a 8 or 9. The canter work also had some significant improvement. Sarah had me think about really sitting down on his butt and making him ball up underneath me. We also worked on getting the canter more forward, but without going faster, just having more energy at that same pace if that makes sense. He didn't swap leads at all today, and we only picked up the wrong lead going to right once. The left is still way better than the right but I was really happy with our progress today. Sarah says it is going to be like when I started to work on framing him up at the trot, which used to be such a challenge for me but now I hardly even have to think about it. We finished out the ride with some stretching circles at the trot which are also getting much better, he is getting really toned in his back muscles and really helps his stretch. Sarah also liked what tying the left stirrup did for my position, so we are going to keep doing it for now. 


Kate said...

Sounds like you had an excellent lesson! Werther seems like a lovely horse - very willing and capable. You're smart not to rush moving up the levels -as you say, taking your time doesn't lose anything. It's nice that Werther is developing (or already has) good impulsion as evidenced by the extended trot and how the canter is progressing - good for you for working with him so consistently - I really enjoy reading your posts - I feel as if I'm there with you!

Ellie said...

Thanks Kate!
Werther is a fourth level horse with a little FEI level training. Most of our work together is me figuring out how to push all the right buttons. The more I learn, the more I have fun riding him, because he knows so much.