Monday, August 12, 2019

Homework but in a Good Way

We went to our second dressage show of 2019 and Jet was SO good.  Calm off the trailer, schooled the outside of the ring during lunch like a pro, warmed up totally paying attention to me, and in general was just so nice to deal with and seemed to be enjoying himself.  Really glad I stuck with my 2 week plan of trying to get him to work for me by focusing more on partnership, more in-hand spook work, lighter test riding, and generally telling him how fabulous he is at regular intervals.  I told my husband my goal was harmony and if I got scores in the 50’s with harmony I would be more pleased than if I got scores in the 60’s with tension and an unhappy pony.  Harmony first, technical improvement next.  Anyway, someone complimented me at the show about how quiet he was with such good manners. Right there I felt like we won.  But on to the other stuff, tests, scores, and all that jazz.

We got a 59.82% for 6th on 1st Test 1 and a 63.57% for 4th on 1st Test 2.  Some nice judge’s comments including “lovely harmonious pair”, and three 8.0’s in Test 2.  Things to work on include better stretch circle, to the buckle on the free walk, some test accuracy, more uphill carriage with shoulders lifted, more engagement, and even bolder lengthens.  We didn’t get lower than a 6.0 on any of the trot or canter lengthens though, and that really makes me happy!  Such a fun day.

So, plenty to work on.  The accuracy, free walk, and stretch circle are pretty easy fixes.  The uphill carriage and engagement will be a work in progress, but after watching videos and seeing stills like the above, clearly I need to SIT THE F UP and that will be a focus for the next couple of weeks.  Add in some more engaging lateral work, some lengthen exercises, some more partnership work, and a few test rides before our next show in September and we should be good to go.


  1. Congratulations! I am in total agreement that harmony needs to be first. You can build on that! You should be pleased that you have built such a great relationship.