Monday, January 9, 2012

I feel better!

I was pretty frustrated after my last ride - obviously!  And I was even more frustrated that I wouldn't be able to ride again until today.  Well today is here and the ride was great!

Let me back up to yesterday and my conversation with C.  If you'll recall from my last post, I sent a video to C to get her input on what was going wrong.  On my way home from GA yesterday, I had a long conversation with her about what I needed to be working on.  Believe it or not, she didn't think the video looked that bad.  In fact, she thought it looked pretty good.  She told me a couple of things:

- use more figures and don't be afraid to use a 10 or 15 meter circle to ensure he's paying attention to me
- lateral work, lateral work, lateral work, and then some more lateral work
- transitions within the gaits to shorten him from nose to tail
- lateral work
- upward and downward transitions and really focus on him using his push muscles (his behind), not his pulling muscles (front end)
- lateral work

Did I mention lateral work?  Basically, he really needs to be more supple and I need to be more aggressive in asking him to bend.  He gets a little annoyed when he's asked to work and I just need to keep quietly insisting he do what I ask.

So that brings me back to today.  I really focused on bending him in and leg yielding out on a circle, bending him out and leg yielding onto a smaller circle, shoulder in down the long side, and using smaller figures to keep him focused and supple.  And you know what?  It worked!  He was forward, responsive to my leg and I think I ride better when I have to think more.  Constantly mixing things up keeps me on my toes too!

School all day tomorrow - boo!  It's supposed to be nice tomorrow too so double boo!  I was supposed to go to Aiken on Wed for cross country schooling but I don't think that's going to happen as the weather is supposed to be yucky.  Maybe next week.

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