Dressage Lesson with Nicky Lickley @ Kingswood EC

Haven’t had a lesson for a while as Nicky has been quite unwell, coupled with issues with the Range Rover’s electrical connections and the snow it means a long time between lessons…..

I need to work on Finn’s desire to move forward – she must be free and IN FRONT OF THE LEG, I really must expect a reaction from her when I apply the aids. Do not accept her falling behind the leg – ever…..

Straightness and bend – she is getting straighter but I still have a tendency to hang on the right rein somewhat – STOP IT! A good exercise to practice to get me out of ths habit is to ride Finn for a few strides straight and a few strides with neck bend, get her off the inside rein (counter flex if needs be) and ride her inside leg to outside hand. The outside hand needs to play a more positive role.

Another good exercise we did today was to leg yield from the 3/4 line to the track, immediately ride a 10m circle – then into shoulder-in, think of accelerating in the shoulder-in as I tend to allow the rhythm to slow too much – rhythm is more important than angle: shoulder-fore is fine.  I must ensure that I maintain even bend and rhythm in the leg yeild, on the circle and through the shoulder-in.

For the canter transition: ride the trot with purpose, don’t back off the transition.  Ride the canter forward – think about that desire to move forward, but don’t push her out of her natural rhythm or out of balance.

Sit more to the back of the saddle in the canter, and sit up – lift the collar bones and think ‘elegant’.

We ran through the BE95 test for Eland Lodge.  Think about my entry at A – ride the centre line with conviction and make an impression on the judge.  Ride nice big fat circles.  Ride forward with purpose – concentrate on the hind legs, do not allow her to power herself forward from the shoulders.  Also think about her frame – don’t allow her poll to be too low.

A good session – feeling confident for Eland Lodge now.