Natalie Povey's October Blog

Blog for October 2016

After having a visit off the dentist at the end of last month Fulltide had two weeks off to allow her abscess to heel as she was in some discomfort when being ridden.

At the beginning of this month Fulltide also started coming in to her stable in the evenings to be stabled overnight now the weather has started to change as she lived out during the summer being rugged up according to the weather. Fulltide had been ready to stay in the comfort of her lovely warm bed for a couple of weeks as she had been a little reluctant to go back out once we had worked her in the evening but as the weather was still quite mild and dry I thought we should make the most of it, although she will be turned out every day during the winter when possible.

I also found out this month that our Para Dressage Tests will be changing next year so we have lots more to focus on and establish in our training over the winter as our tests with now include movements such as leg yielding, serpentines and halts in other places than at the start and the end of the test as well as still including medium trot, freewalk and a variety of sized circles. Some of the movements that use to be in the tests have been replaced by other movements – I now have the challenge of trying to remember the new dressage tests. We haven’t really touched on lateral work at the moment other than shoulder-in as we had been focusing on the straightness so we didn’t confuse Fulltide with more aids as I will have to teach her to move off my seat and gentle rein aids but that’s sometimes easier said than done so this is what I have been working on this month. She has picked up the idea of going sideways quite quickly but we now need to perfect it as sometime Fulltide gets a little confused with what I am asking as she is so eager to please and other times I get it wrong so we need to work together to perfect our leg yielding. We have also been working on the rhythm within the paces as this can sometimes be a little inconsistent due to my balance and Fulltide being sensitive to my aids. During our training sessions we have also been practicing lots of circles (8m, 10m, 15m,20m) making sure we are working on the line of the circle and not falling in or out. We have also been working on our halts at the end of a training session just doing two or three – Fulltide often leaves a hind leg behind so I have someone helping me one the floor to tell me which leg needs correcting and I ask her to move that leg – we only do two or three until she halts square as if we did anymore it would make her fidget in the halts which is something I don’t want.