Doug and I Have a Lesson With Joan

Doug and I had a great lesson with Joan today, and we were both so tired we napped afterwards :)
She worked with us on turn on the forehand and leg yielding. Rogo was the turn on the forehand star. He's done it before, but did it quite well from the first time he was asked. We could do a little polishing to the left. One area for improvement is to control each step, but even that isn't too bad. Doug and Savannah did quite well, but it needs some work in staying in one spot.
Then the roles reversed, as Savanah and Doug were the leg yielding stars. They'd never done it before and off they went leg yielding back and forth between the quarter and center lines, keeping a nice rhythm. Damn them! Ha Ha. Rogo and I were next up and we didn't do so well. We could get some lateral steps, but they were very slow and lacked impulsion. He's getting the idea though, so it's all good.
Then we moved on to sitting trot. Thank heavens Joan is starting me with this now because it's going to take me months. I thought it would be a little easier because I can sit Savanah's biggest trot and she's no slouch, but I can't sit to Rogo. I think it's partly that I haven't done it in a long time, and partly that he has a lot of suspension and I've never learned to sit to that. Once again, Savanah and Doug did great - their sitting trot was lovely. Doug has come light year's in the last year and even over the summer having her home and riding more. I think going in competitions really helped him too. It firms up goals, and also allows you to see good riding and be motivated to get there.
We finished with riding together in formation and Joan calling out the pattern she wanted. The horses seem to enjoy this and it's fun. It forces you to control the speed within the gait too, as the outside horse speeds up and the inside one slows down on the corners.
Tonight I longed Dan. He is doing so well on the longe. We did 5 cavelleti, spaced to lengthen his trot and he soars through them. We also did a lot of walk trot canter transitions on the longe. Maybe it's my imagination, and I need to work with him more, but I think his trot is looking less flat even when he's not going over cavelleti.


achieve1dream said…
Sounds like everything went perfectly. Don't you love lessons like that?? :)
SprinklerBandit said…
Leg yielding is a challenge! (And Izzy always wants to impress me by doing LOTS of steps in turn on the forehand). Souns like a good lesson overall.

How is Rogo reacting to you practicing your sitting trot on him? Is he bothered at all? (I'm always worried my lack of finesse will screw with my horse. Not saying it's valid, but it's what I think.)
Lori Skoog said…
Ahhh...reading about your lesson reminds me of the days when I used to take classical dressage instruction. My teacher was a student of the Maestro Nuno Olivera from Portugal and brought with her great depth. She would attend his school there for many summers. I had to be the most back yard person she ever worked with. I read your post below about Rogo. What a special boy. You were so lucky to find him and connect from day 1.
Carol said…
Thanks for the comments.
Sprinkler Bandit - I worry about my lack of finesse screwing with him too. I only do about 8 steps, which is about the # I can do without bouncing. I'm worried that if I do try to learn sitting trot while I'm also trying to teach him to connect and come through, that it's counter productive. Instead of becoming round, he'll end up hollowing his back. So I'm torn and my compromise is to just do a few steps and only for a short period of time - a few minutes 2 or 3 times a week. He didn't understand it at first because sitting always meant walking or cantering, but he's getting used to the idea and doesn't seem to mind now.
Lori - sounds like you had a great teacher!