Sunday, 17 February 2019

Flatwork Training Update - 11.02.19


Each month, we attend a flatwork training clinic with Cathy Burrell where we spruce up on our dressage skills. Unfortunately, due to the winter flu, January's clinic was cancelled, so I was even more looking forward to our February session!

It didn't disappoint either, it was a super productive and fun session. We worked on lots of different aspects, starting off with straightening up our canter. I hadn't realised how Louie's hin was drifting inward but with an arena with a few mirrors at the end of the long side, I'd no excuses not to spot it!

We worked on using the 3/4 lines to straighten things up, spotting that it was also my shoulders causing some of the crookedness, so was made sure they were squared up and no curling to the inside. We rode "straighter" turns and not letting overbend to the inside along with a subtle shoulder in aid to straighten up.

Whilst were talking about the canter, we also worked on getting me to sit down and onto my seat bones & resist the temptation to tip forward. I sit well on the left rein, but on the right I'm much weaker and lean forward, so I need to work on sitting up and keeping Louie together and the power underneath us.

Still on the canter, our upward canter transition need to be sharper and more forward. At the moment, Louie has great lift but isn't going forward into the canter. So we worked on lots and lots AND LOTS of upward canter transitions. With Louie becoming slightly confused and over sensitive to the insight leg, we took a breather and walked on a long rein for a few minutes.

This is a great trick to reset Louie's brain when he gets a little misunderstood about what you're asking.

We also worked on trying to get Louie to take me more contact forward in the trot, which seems to come much better after a bit of a break on a long rein. I need to get used to the heavier feeling than I am used to in my hands and not interpret that as a negative. It also makes me really conscious to sitting up tall to keep Louie together.

Speaking of hands, I've spent a couple of weeks trying to get my hands into a better position to help stabilise them. The work has paid off as they felt much better, but I'm still ensuring that I don't become over-obsessed with them and create an even big problem about them!

Here's a short video of our session showing our canter straightening work and the work towards a better contact from Louie.



Our next planned session with Cathy is on 11th March, and as it will be after the Regionals we're looking forward to what should be a tough session where we begin to take our training to the next level and work on some new dancing moves!!


8 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. It was a fantastic session & I'm really looking forward to the next! X

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  2. Replies
    1. Thank you! Looking forward to our next session and making the next step change to our training!

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  3. Those breathers are LIFE. I've learned to not keep pushing in those moments of confusion, too. Rest is the almighty reset button!

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