Friday, April 10, 2009
Put Phantom through his paces today in preparation for next weekend's fun day at the barn. The CEC Barn Bunch will be gathering for a day of low-key competition and food. Notice how food plays a significant role in our barn activites? We'll have a mix of English and western classes, trail classes ridden or in-hand, and "ride a buck." That's buck as in $, not buck as in "yeeha!" (the dollar under the knee class, last one to lose his or her dollar wins).
For comic relief, I signed up to do Training Test 1 in the dressage-test-of-choice class. First, I had to get a copy of the test. Boarder Char helped verify that I had the one in current use. Then to learn the test, which wasn't too bad. And next, ride elements of the test. Ah, there's the rub.
I actually had the arena to myself for most of my ride today, so I made one run through the whole test. Oops, Phantom stiffened up for the latter half of the test. A little resistant to the right. So we did circles and transitions to the right until I was over-riding and he was anticipating. Once I got a bit of consistently soft and round work, we changed rein. More transitions in the new direction -- by now Phantom was getting a little anxious. Managed to get a couple of decent transitions and turns up the center line so called it good.
We generally do a posting trot on a long rein to stretch out and loosen up at the end of our ride before our cool down at a walk.
All in all, for not having taken lessons for years nor having ridden a dressage test for an equal or greater number of years, I was pleased with our work. I think next week I'll focus on lateral work, then revisit the test movements on Friday.
Good ride-itude today.