Applying the dressage advice

I have a schooling CT with Moe in a couple of weeks, so I thought I’d better ride him sometime between now and October 4. I was eager to work on Gina, but she’s been ridden several days in a row and could use a day off. (She reminded me by walking away quickly when I tried to catch her to apply fly spray this morning!)

I cleared some ponies out of the outdoor and made a conscious effort to apply Sunday’s dressage lesson concepts to my riding on Moe. I figure if I’m doing something with one horse, I’m probably doing it with the other.


Poor Moe. For over a decade, he’s put up with my questionable riding with a minimal amount of fuss. Today was no exception. I’d catch my outside hand coming farther and farther back, and I’d suddenly remember to soften it, which my body interpreted as ‘put your hand forward 3 inches’, which led to Moe being surprised about where all the contact just went. I’d feel my shoulders getting crooked, and I’d forcibly shove my inside shoulder back, which made Moe’s balance change. I’d feel him lean into a circle or corner, and remember I was supposed to be supporting him with my outside rein.

I imagine Moe spent a lot of time feeling confused about what I was trying to ask him. He gamely trotted and cantered on, even when I did weird stuff. I finally got my act together about 25 minutes into our ride, and we had a lovely canter to the right. He felt powerful, like a 15.3 hand ball of energy! Transitions are still a mess, but at least the gaits themselves are coming along pretty well.

The Pope’s in America this week; do you think he’d consider Moe for sainthood?

Author: Stephanie

Equestrian, amateur cook, people person.

7 thoughts on “Applying the dressage advice”

  1. You’re being such a good student! Isn’t it great having one that lets you figure stuff out without taking it personally. And yes, I do think Moe should be eligible for sainthood. But I’m Jewish, so not sure I’m qualified to make that assessment 😉

  2. Argh! I’m gonna be out of town that weekend or I would come take pictures! Boooo me.

    Moe patron saint of…. carrots?

  3. he’s so handsome! and yea my mare gets really thrown off when i suddenly change everything in an attempt to be more correct (like when i try to *not* pull constantly on the inside rein – that confuses the ever loving hell out of her haha)

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