To ride dressage is to dance with your horse, equal partners in the delicate and sometimes difficult work of creating harmony and beauty.

Monday, February 25, 2013

A very special gift

Yesterday after our early morning classes I hauled Lance home. That's when I discovered that only a snippet of our second test got recorded with my camera. The person who recorded my second test does not have high-speed internet, and said it would be awhile before she could get it uploaded to YouTube.

Yesterday afternoon I went back to the fairgrounds to volunteer, as this show is my dressage chapter's big annual fundraiser. While working in the announcer's booth, my friend Sylvia (Horton's owner) came up to me with a sly smile and handed me a DVD. She thought I should have my big red goober's first tests for posterity, and paid to have them recorded for me by the show videographer. I was so touched over her thoughtfulness and generosity that I almost cried!

So here, thanks to Sylvia, is Lance's dressage debut. I'm pretty proud of my mouthy baby mustang, especially considering his short history under saddle. (It's ME in which I see the most room for improvement! I've been riding without eyes on the ground for too long....)



14 comments:

TBDancer said...

And isn't Lance just the happiest fellow to be doing dressage with his rider!! Very nice tests, Michelle, and he is coming along beautifully. (I think your position is very good; you are steady and tactful.You have the same problem I do--keeping the rein contact steady. I worked on that today with my Huey and while he was THRILLED that we got to canter more (and SOONER!!), he was also very obedient and "obliging in the bridle."

The music is wonderful, too.

GOOD JOB!!!!

Michelle said...

Thank-you, Dancer, you are very kind. I rode today with much more contact ('long arms, short reins' as Jane Savoie would say). Lance also had much more energy today; I would love to have gone in the show ring today to see how much better our scores and comments would have been!

A :-) said...

I have no idea what the judges for, but you guys look great to me :-)

Theresa said...

Congrats on the nice scores and how wonderful to have that gift of the your first tests together. You two look great!

Wendy said...

Wow! You two look fabulous! I'm impressed at how good he looks in such a short time! He looked like an old pro at horse shows... Congrats!

Laura said...

You were getting your workout in the first test to keep him going!!

And how wonderful to have your first tests to look at later as a marker for how much improvement you'll see!

I can't wait to follow his progress. You inspire me...

Mary Ann said...

Gosh, these are good, and I'm sending them on to a dressage friend to see, too... did you mean to say that you have ridden WITH your eyes on the ground for too long?

Michelle said...

The nice thing about dressage is that it's all spelled out, Adrienne, so you KNOW what the judges are looking for. Not that subjectivity never enters into it, but certainly not as much as in some things.

Michelle said...

Thank-you, Theresa!

Michelle said...

He's got a great mind, Wendy, for which I am very thankful.

Michelle said...

Yes, I was, although I didn't want to turn the test into a remedial training session so he got away with doing too little. Things are already better; I just needed to review Jane's audio session!

Aw shucks....

Michelle said...

Mary Ann, 'eyes on the ground' refers to someone watching your riding and giving you input. It doesn't even have to be a clinician or instructor; a fellow dressage rider of any level can see things and give you valuable feedback. I don't have that very often, so it is easy to slip into bad habits. I could spot some in those videos!

C-ingspots said...

The first thing I noticed is how very relaxed and comfortable Lance looks in the ring. He does indeed appear happy to be doing his job! It does look like you were working a little bit to keep his forward momentum going, but that's much better to deal with when starting out than the opposite problem. Overall, I think you two look very well-suited to each other. He's the perfect size for you Michelle, bigger bodied than Russell was, but about the same height? I'd say you have reason to be proud of your handsome boy. He has an adorable face, cute expressions! Well done! :)

shelly hancock said...

What a wonderful gift from Sylvia! I liked your comment regarding watching the videos and seeing where *you* could improve. I used to do a little automotive performance driving, and we had a saying, something about how one would get better performance from a car by 'improving the nut behind the wheel." :-)