Archive for the ‘Student News’ Category

This is one of the best explanation of a classical seat I’ve ever read. A couple of my students told me about it and thought it sounded exactly what they had been hearing during their lessons. It took the words right out of my mouth, except that I start students out with sitting trot and no stirrups on a lunge line. The article did mention that this doesn’t work. It works very well if the instructor is committed to patiently lunging the student and repeating the same thing over and over until the student is able to open the thighs and knees off of the horse. This openness allows the seat to drop down deep on the horse, keeping the legs straight down from the hip so as not to block the seat from staying in front or leading. It is necessary to hold on to the pommel to avoid holding on with the legs or knees. When your hold steadies you, you can let go but keep your hand resting on the pommel in case you need to hang on again after a few strides. Keep doing this until you can let go without holding on with the legs, thighs or knees. If you feel yourself start to pinch, grab hold of the pummel, allowing you to let go with the legs and begin the process again. This is a quick way to successful riding and learning the sitting trot right away. Be patient and just keep working on it until it is part of your muscle memory. It will be well worth your time and it will quicken your progress.

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Kaylee Clark here:
Indie did wonderful today, her canter has improved so much since my last post. No more scrambling, more balance in her canter. She is beginning to learn engagement. The statement I would like to make today is ” I am learning to be softer and softer on my reins. There is no end to the challenge of riding as if you have a silk thread!” I will post more of her so you can watch the transformation.
Leo also made more progress today with my softer hands.
Taking this to all my horses!!!

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Follow Lydia Rose’s Training of Indie                                           Post # Two

Indie’s owner came to visit her to see how the training was going.  Lydia free lunged her, then lunged her with tack and side reins, then worked  her doing Piaffe.  Then Lydia brought her at the bleachers and had Kaylee sit on her and pat her rump and move all over with her legs and then  Lydia repeated the Piaffe work with Kaylee on Indie’s back.  Lydia and Kaylee had already spent time gradually getting her used to a rider just sitting on her.  Then I put Indie on a lunge line with Kaylee on her back at the walk.  Indie has become attached to Lydia, so she walked ahead of Indie so she  would feel secure.  We only did a very little so she wouldn’t get too nervous.  She was soooo good.
Her owner was pleased and proud of her horse. In the short time that she has been in for training (a little over a month), Indie has gone from a horse with no knowledge of what was expected of her, wild eyed and high strung, to a horse with calm attention and pride in herself and her work. We were so proud of Indie as well.
Indies training is following Book Three, “Backing the Young Horse”.

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Saturday morning was so successful.
Robin was able to take her trot work to another level, she was able to lift and lead her horse to lightness, and suspension in her extended trot. (Rather than driving).  We were both high as kites.  So spectacular!
Caitlin was able to yield her young horse on a circle and yield him down the long side off the inside shoulder for the first time and ended her lesson by taking off her saddle and bridle and rode him free without his tack. They are wonderful together.
Kaylee did perfect one tempi changes on Victress.  First time she asked was a couple of weeks ago and they were perfect and I let her try them again and once again they were perfect.   Pretty good since neither horse or rider had ever done them before.  Kaylee listens carefully and works to get it right.  Such a good student.
Angela and Tonka have a wonderful Piaffe, they are really dancing together these days.
Chelsa rode Tonka and did an amazing job bringing him through the back. She sits perfect in her own balance making it easy for a horse to understand her.  Great Day!!

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I am enjoying the summer training season.  Even though I am schooling my main horse, Victress, Prix St George, I start many young horses under saddle.  Carole says I”m very good at it since I have no fear and don’t care if I get a buck or a rear.  They actually come so rarely that when it happens it makes me laugh.  Carole says that’s why the horses don’t get upset because I think it’s fun.

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Fun times as always at Isaac Royal Farm!!  This afternoon we had Robin on Rory and I was riding the delightful Tonka, a Belgian Morgan.  Tonka is patient to new riders to a point and then he shows his mischievious spirit and wants to make sure that you are paying attention.  Today he galluped right past the bench and down the ramp toward the stalls…..Carole was yelling “Duck!!!” which I did and we turned right around and got back out there (gate closed this time!).  Tonka didn’t notice that I was wearing my “This girl don’t take no bull” t-shirt – aha!

Robin got some excellent training under he belt on her half pass and ended the day Two Steps Forward!!!! Little victories seem big and always celebrated in our little dressage community.  This day today in Maine is to die for – about 70 degrees and a light breeze blowing.  As I put Tonka out to pasture Sandy and BethAnne were working on their horses.  This is the life! Yeehaw.

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Canter Series # 11  Excerpts from Book One 

Trained in the Aspirant Technique, this rider, Kaylee Clark, eleven yrs old in this picture,  is in free balance and able to gallop the field without the use of reins or legs – simple balance off her seat.

I first saw this position of horse and rider in the movie “Dances with Wolves” and immediately instituted it as an exercise in the Aspirant Technique.  Over the years it has created strong riders.

This same summer, with her strong core of balance, she was able to ride a hot young horse at first level  so successfully that the judge thought the horse was an old school master.  The horse was only five.

Currently she is schooling her horse and another horse at third level and plans to show third level this summer.

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