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Blog for February and March 2018

The last two months we have been busy working on our training as well as having our weekly lessons with Helen. We have been working on Fulltide not being quite so reactive to my aids so we maintain the relaxation, as Fulltide is very sensitive to my aids so I am learning to ask her less so she doesn’t over react to what I am asking. We have also being focusing on the movements within our dressage tests especially the leg yielding and the medium trot as these are what we find most difficult. We have worked hard with Helen with the leg yielding as I was struggling to achieve the leg yielding to the left due to my outside hand been weaker which means that I lose the shoulder so we just end up with a straight diagonal line – with Helen’s patients we are getting there, I just need to remember to support the shoulder with my outside rein (left hand) – it is much better in trot than walk at the moment so we need to perfect the leg yielding in the walk now as our dressage tests requires us to leg yielding in walk rather than trot.

For the medium trot we have been working on a rectangle and collecting for the corners and the short side encouraging Fulltide to collect and contain the energy then asking for a bigger trot along the outside, we haven’t quite asked for medium trot yet as we don’t want to learn her that she can run onto the forehand – this exercise was a challenge to start with as Fulltide thought the bigger trot was needed at all times and found it quite exciting. Our main aim of the exercise is to keep Fulltide relaxed and into the contact in the transitions from the collected trot to the bigger trot and back again and to make sure she is listening to my go and back aids. We have to work on this a little then move onto another exercise as Fulltide thinks it’s rather exciting.

I have also be learning to control Fulltide’s trot as it can get a little onward bound so I have been using my seat and half halts to help maintain the rhythm as well as keeping her soft into the contact and working over her back. I have also been using circles to help with this.

As well as our training to keep Fulltide’s work varied we have also been using trotting poles and small jumps which Fulltide thoroughly enjoys.