Friday, June 24, 2011

The Premium

Delphi is quite knattily doing her tricks and movements; her shoulder in is reliable, the change of bend to renver is getting good, and she could travel around in haunches in all day. She obediently steps away from the leg for lateral movement and she can change the bend from leg yield to half pass and back again. A nudge of the inside seatbone sends her off into an obedient canter, or just as obedient counter canter, either straight lines or bending. She can canter around in counter canter with as many simple changes as you please.

That's all well and good but not worth a darn if she's going around hollow with her snout up in the air or even flat and only tenuously on the bit. Today during our lesson Karen insisted we get round and through, especially in the canter where Delphi can be tenuous about being on the bit. We finally had to resort to relatively quick bends and counter bends; to do this one must keep the elbows down and change the bend from the rider's shoulders (that must be back!) rather than the hands alone.

More elegantly, one can do shoulder in, activate the inside hind, any lateral work, or shoulder in around a circle. The premium must be on keeping Delphi round-- deep even-- so that we push past her mediocrity zone into staying reliably through.

For the love of Pete, SIT BACK!