HorseAddict: From Pony Club to Proud

Fri, 10/16/2020 - 21:28
Training Your Horse
Leueen on Biasini :: Photo © Queca Franco

A week ago I had a lesson with my coach where I was so dismal I wondered she didn’t want to just stop and go home. But she doesn’t give up on me. She presses on and at the end she said: “That was a tough lesson today. ” We both agreed that it was the end of the week and that Biasini was a bit tired.

But that does not excuse me riding poorly. However, even in a lesson that is sub par, I learned something. Belinda reminded me of how to ride a corner. She reminded me of the exercises we all did in Pony Club as kids. We had to ride into the corner, right into the corner, so that we could get our horse or pony next to the letter that was nearest to the corner and reach over to touch it. Being reminded of that discipline had me riding well into those corners with a smile on my face.

This week we ended on a much more positive note. My coach was helping me from the ground with the passage and transitions to collected trot. At the end of the lesson she said she was: “Very proud.” She did not mean that she was proud that I could execute a passage and would be launching on to do the Grand Prix. No. She meant that I was making corrections fast enough to keep Biasini going in his best frame and with his best responses. It sounds so simple doesn’t it?

Quick responses. I have struggled to get that quickness for a long time, for years actually. Now, at last, it is coming together. Here is a short( 26 seconds) video of some trot work. You will hear Belinda say I have let Biasini get too open at the end of the half pass. But with a quick correction he is back in a good frame. If I am quick enough Biasini will respond with the right answer.

So it was another ” Don’t give up” and ” Don’t be disheartened. Tomorrow can be better” week. And it was better. Much better. And guess what? Another week starts today!

by Anne Leueen

Based in Ontario, Canada, Leueen calls herself a "vintage" dressage rider. Initially she rode in the jumper and eventing world, but stopped while at university. She did not ride for thirty years, other than occasional trail riding, when she was living in England  and took up dressage at age 50. Anne is coached by Belinda Trussell and her current equine partner is Biasini, a Hanoverian gelding who is a dressage expert and often wonders why Anne doesn’t just let him make all the decisions about what to do and where to go.

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