Wednesday, July 2, 2008

To hold or not to hold?

That is the question.

I had a jumping lesson with Amy yesterday and I asked her about what Mike had said about holding so much in both dressage and jumping.

She said that in the dressage, she does need to be in that more up frame, but with her topline sticking out and more relaxed. In the jumping, there are times when to hold and times when not to hold. I wholeheartedly agree with her as I had thought that Mike tends to "manhandle" his horses a bit and be a little too aggressive. Also, he has the skill to be able to really release over the fence while I am just starting to learn to be able to hold to the base and then give over the fence. As Amy put it, "she has to be in control of her feet". I feel like we're on the same page.

My lesson went well. We started by trotting and cantering over the canter poles. First we went for the three stride and then the four. The four of course was much harder to get, but I felt like she's actually starting to try for me now and it came a lot quicker than it used to.

The first jumping part was a line of verticals (maybe 6 or so) and we trotted in and the jumps were a stride apart each. She made us do it with no stirrups for two times and then she raised the jumps, going from smallest to largest (maybe 3'6" or so in the back). May was good, but I needed to really bring my shoulders back. Next, she had us angle each individual jump and then rollback to the next one. This was harder, of course, but I still felt like we did well. May was really starting to catch on to the excersize. However, I needed to sit up and make it "uglier". I needed to use my outside counterbend instead of just pulling on the inside rein and having her shoulder pop out. Just more stuff to work on...

Today I have a dressage lesson and I'm going to talk to Carolyn about what Mike and Tiffani had said about May's frame. We'll see how it goes!

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