Saturday, June 28, 2014

Practicing Dressage and Continuing to Improve

 Friday I another great lesson. Riding several times a week has done a lot to improve my riding skills. I'm starting to post on the correct diagonal most of the time, putting my heels down, sitting up straighter, and overall just becoming more relaxed and comfortable in the saddle.

 Meghan had Chester tacked up and ready when I arrived. Horse service! The lesson started with me riding Chester on a serpentine, first at the walk and then at the trot, the latter of which I did a few times to work on my posting and changing my posting diagonal. I've been improving as lot this past month! When doing the  serpentine, I was on the correct diagonal most of time, though there were several times when I needed to fix it. I'm also getting a lot better at sitting a beat and changing my diagonal at the point where two parts of the serpentine meet.

Other than being tipped a bit forward and me shoulders not being back, I look kind of good.
Heels are down and aligned with my hips and I appear to be on the correct diagonal.

 After riding several serpentines, I took a quick walk break, then trotted around the dressage arena for a little bit, heading left. I then made a trot circle at E, riding several ones to make it more precise and ride on the correct diagonal.
Trot circle at B
 Next I worked my dressage test, Intro Test C. The were some parts where I was not on the correct diagonal and I didn't quite make it to the letters, but it otherwise went smoothly. The turn up centerline is getting better as well. After a short break I rode through the test one more time, making the circles and diagonals more precise.
Circle at A heading right
Finishing a circle at A to the left.
Heading to P to make my short diagonal to H.

After that, I cooled Chester down by riding him around the property twice because he had really worked up a sweat in the hot weather. I untacked him, the hosed him off to cool him down further and get all the sweat off of him. I then sprayed fly spray all over him and returned him to his paddock.
 Before I went home we stopped at a nearby feed store where I bought a sweat scraper because Chester didn't have one, as well as a lead rope with tan, navy, and burgundy stripes, just so I can start collecting my own things. That way I don't need to buy as much stuff when I get a horse of my own.

 The lesson was very fun and I'm happy that I'm starting to improve more and more. I'm now having  lessons Mondays, Wednesdays, and fridays every week, plus I will be attending the Pony Club activities. I'm really excited about that.

Forgot to mention this at the beginning of the post, but Thursday I helped out with the therapy riding program Meghan runs, afterward visiting Chester to give him an apple I brought from home. He enjoyed it!


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