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Sunday, February 21, 2010

Ryan Yap

We had our clinic with Ryan Yap this weekend, and boy have we missed him! Here is the thing about dressage that I hate just as much as I love: You never know everything. There is always something to learn, or a new way to do an old familiar move. I was all excited to show Ryan the progress we have made... well it wasn't quite the response I expected. Yes, we have definitely made progress but the thing I was the most excited to show him was the thing he said needed the most work.

My wonderful husband was kind enough to spend an entire day at the barn in 35 degrees and video tape our lesson. Which was wonderful, but also brought me to realize a harsh reality. Sometimes when something feels so good on the horses back (in this case what I thought was pretty darn close to a medium trot), it really doesn't look that great on the ground or on video tape! The worst part about this situation is that the mistake is all mine. I need to set her up straighter... hand smacking head on forehead- duh. Makes sense when I hear it, when I type it, when I am on the horses back. But, I took a short cut without realizing. I wanted the medium trot. I wanted to have a medium trot for Ryan. I wanted to do something fancy, even if we aren't 100% ready for it. This of course my friends is not dressage... this is teaching a trick. Her front feet flipped, her shoulders even raised a bit. But when you divert your attention to the hind legs- yuck! sweeping along, out behind her instead of reaching up under herself. Again YUCK!

In short I learned an important lesson this weekend. You need to have all the basics 100% otherwise it isn't worth forcing it, just to have to correct it later down the road. Now for the good news. Ryan introduced the whip and little bit of serious sit down. Gram was great. She didn't get nervous, she tried. She sat, if only for a brief moment it is a step in the right direction and all I needed to get over my want-to-be medium trot depression. Today she was ready to learn, I am hopeful for the day hopefully coming soon that we can sit down and lift to get that darn medium trot.

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