Thursday, June 11, 2015

You better work, bitch.

Two dressage posts in one week is just painful. But power through! We're doing the world's most low key dressage schooling show Saturday, one I'm almost embarrassed to have entered, so I'm going in with the mentality to use my rides as a meter to how far I can push Bobby for real beast mode work without exploding his brain and losing points on every movement due to tension.

The more I think back on last weekend's dressage ride, the more I get disappointed in myself for just dialing it in. I have no right to complain about our score if I don't put in the effort to get every point we can.

what's that? you want some recycled flat pictures?
alright fine. if you insist.

My rides this week have been centered on pushing Bobby for more--and pushing myself to actually ask for it. Bobby's a well schooled dude. I've put some fun buttons on him over the years, and he's really coming into himself this year. He's getting strong in all the right places, but more than that, he's getting more and more confident in his own abilities.

He's a hard horse to work with sometimes because--despite outward appearances--he's incredibly smart, and he doesn't like to make mistakes. If he thinks he's caught on to something, he automatically goes for it. If it's not what I want, he gets vastly offended and brings on the tantrums.

Lately though, I've felt like I can get after him a little bit more to step up to the plate and think things through instead of just reacting. We're heading across the diagonal at the canter. Are we going to do a simple change? Flying change? Come down to a trot at X and stick at that gait? Or are we going to hold the lead and do a counter canter loop?

Questions like that used to blow his brain apart because he'd just pick the first thing that came to mind whether it was what I wanted or not, but now he waits and listens.

This new horse is a fun one to work with. The last few rides involved a lot of walking, but when we got to the trot and canter, I'm able to demand that little extra bit without fear of repercussions. In turn, I've gotten a horse that's rounder, more connected, sitting deep, and giving me that coveted bouncing feeling of true impulsion and hints of real collection.

back to this show on saturday!

Now it's up to me to actually ask for the fancy. Mental preparedness? Probably not one of my strongest points...


  1. I'm seriously lacking in mental prep lately too. At least we can flail together heh

  2. I think it sounds fun- can't wait to see what you get out of him!

  3. i'm so guilty of just sorta going along with the ride for dressage, rather than risk rocking the boat. but your descriptions of how bobby has grown are awesome - i hope you guys rock it at this show!!!

  4. Dressagz is hard. Like when summer hits and your horse is like "Haha I don't really like to put effort into the trot anymore" and you don't ride in spurs.

  5. Dressage is the bane of my existence, but it is SO. DAMN. handy. Makes everything easier, but ugh, it's a mental drain.

  6. You'll get there! One thing to try is break it down for the show. Like today I will ride the movements but really try for those 8s in the canter, or trot, or wherever you feel
    You are strongest. Having little goals inside the big goals for your tests can make it less stressful and also rewarding.

  7. :-D This sounds awesome. Someday, we'll be there too.

  8. I feel a fancy Bobby sighting in the future.

  9. What a wonderful feeling to have a horse waiting for your direction!


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