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Apr 03

CalgaryDressage.com Dressager’s Log…Kim Cox

Watch my back

Hindsight is 20/20

Roderick is a 12 year old Dutch Warmblood gelding, imported KWPN (Ferro X Dance-O-War XX).  He has awesome presence and potential.  I am truly fortunate that he is my equine partner.

 To achieve our goals, as a team I must target “suppleness”. General suppleness, in the jaw, poll, through the back and in lateral work. 

This means both of us have work to do.  It is not just me working on Roderick. I need to continually ask more from myself as a Dressager, softer aids, ask and allow the horse to respond, don’t nag with the aids, insist when I must, help Roderick stay balanced, and give him the confidence he needs to achieve at the higher levels. 

I wanted to show third level this year, but some elements, like changes and half pass need confirmation before we move up. Dressage friends told  me to go ahead, show at third level and let the changes and half-pass develop over the year.  Experience tells me that this time I won’t rush, and we’ll stick to the plan, confirming  our training to succeed in the long term.

My goal is to ride Roderick to Prix St. George.  When  Roderick is consulted on this decision, he  snorts in agreement.  However, Roderick, like  most horses, doesn’t keep a calendar in his stall, so fails to see the reason for “getting geared up” for the start of the show season.  Let’s say we are a work in progress.

My Plan:

1. Increase my focus on feel and response.

2. Be consistent in asking and my aids.

3. Ask and allow.

4. Take flexion in order to give.

5. Balance my horse before each transition and in circles.