I handed my camera to Brian yesterday while I rode Larry so he could shoot some video footage. None of the videos really turned out (operator error), but I saw enough to be unhappy with my posture. This is why regular instruction, or at the very least mirrors or a knowledgeable person on the ground are so valuable. Our perceptions can be so very different from reality! Granted, Larry's 2x4 body is a bit more challenging to balance upon than Russell's was (it would be easier if I were built like a 2x4 as well!), but that's no excuse. Part of the problem is that I've lost some of my core strength.
So when I rode this morning, I focused on bringing my shoulders back and down; stretching my neck and spine tall and straight by imagining a string from heaven attached to the top of my head; keeping my legs long and quiet and my heels down. I am also looking ahead to the end of March when Julie is in Oregon to housesit for her parents. Russell and I attended a couple clinics with her back in 2010 which were very beneficial, and in another four weeks Larry should be conditioned enough for more intensive work.
Every time I ride Larry it feels like he remembers more. At first he acted clueless about things I know he has been schooled in at some point, like reinbacks, leg yield and lateral work. His gaits are slooowly gaining some consistency. I just wish I could see some gain in his body condition score! Sometimes I call him "Larry the dairy cow" because of his prominent tailhead and hip bones....
To ride dressage is to dance with your horse, equal partners in the delicate and sometimes difficult work of creating harmony and beauty.
Friday, February 24, 2012
We're both rusty
Labels: clinic, conditioning, conformation, Larry, schooling
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The filling out will come as I know you know. Since he's in work however light it may be he's not banking any reserves just yet like a horse sitting in pasture. Boy I wish I could send you all the additional pounds my guys have put on this winter. They are all looking like welsh ponies and just about as sassy.
I sympathize about having a narrow horse BTW, we have always referred to Nick as Narrow Nick and he is. It doesn't help that Cooper is so wide he's almost pigeon toed. I can put a dandy brush sideways down through his legs on his chest and have room to spare.
Theresa, your horses can keep their pounds; I'd rather share some of MINE with Larry! (He probably prefer that, too - ha.)
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