Monday, October 31, 2016

Clinic with Alfredo Hernandez: Day 2, renvers and travers

After watching the videos from Day 1 of the clinic and reading (and re-reading) my notes, I knew that for myself, I really wanted to focus more on keeping my hands down and using more inside leg for Day 2. For T, I wanted to remind him that he MUST move away from my leg when asked. Kicking and refusing is not an option.

I started T off on the ground, doing turns on the forehand and leg yields. Alfredo stepped in and showed me a better way to hold the reins if I'm working without side reins, and also pointed out that I need to be more demanding. I can't accept a half-hearted response from T... I don't need to be mean, but if I ask, he has to respond RIGHT NOW. He's not a hot horse, but he still needs to get his butt moving when it's time to move his butt.

Day 2 of the clinic saw a lot more work on shoulder in and renvers, first on the circle and then on the straight line. Taran was much more off my leg from the beginning after his little bit of ground work, so that helped. When I struggled with the positioning of renvers on the circle, Alfredo pointed out how much easier it would be on a straight line, and of course he was right.

This shit is hard BUT LOOK AT THAT CROSSOVER

Also, activating the hind end makes for a hella fancy trot.


Eventually we were allowed off the circle and got to do travers/renvers/travers on the quarterline. Taran was SO soft and responsive off my leg, even though I didn't always do a great job riding him through (that whole bend thing). It was amazing to be able to move his body back and forth with so little effort.

Renvers

Shoulder in


We didn't do a lot of canter - he was pretty tired and a little flat. Alfredo had us try some shoulder in/haunches out at the canter which is pretty much impossible but DAMN it gets the horse engaged and collected, for like those two steps you can both hold it together.


The biggest takeaways from this ride include:
  • Warm up with haunches out on the circle, then move on to renvers once the horse has warmed up, because that's what helps with the collection.
  • When you've done renvers on the circle and gotten really good sideways steps with bend, switch to regular bend and ask for a bigger trot (but not faster). That's when you get the real engagement.
  • If you think you have enough bend, you need twice as much.
  • I tend to lose the throughness (the "round and deep") because I'm pulling and getting handsy. Long time problem, but keeping my hands together and down, with my elbows bent, helps lots.
  • When you ask for a downward transition, ALWAYS keep the bend through the transition. If you're doing shoulder fore/renvers/shoulder in/half pass/leg yield/whatever, KEEP THE BEND. That way the horse steps through with the inside hind into the next gait.
  • Taran is no longer allowed to grab the reins and drag them out of my hands for free walk. He must "take them like a gentleman".
Sorry, just one more pic of the awesome uphill trot. I NEED this in my life!

19 comments:

  1. "If you think you have enough bend, you need twice as much."
    This, literally all the time. I'm loving these clinic notes!

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    1. Seriously, AT LEAST twice as much. I always feel like I've got SO much and then I look at the video and am like, horse is not bent at all wtf. Struggle bus!

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    2. I still remember at my first dressage lesson in ages this summer and the instructor was like "does she feel over bent?" and I was like "YES" and she was like well you *almost* have enough bend... Haha.

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  2. You two look amazing, and you have so much good homework from this clinic! What a rich learning experience.

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    1. Hahaha this homework is going to go on FOREVER.

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  3. I can't wait to take a clinic with him, I love your recaps!

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    1. He's a tough guy to ride for, but I like working with him.

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  4. Taran looks so freakin fancy i can't even believe it!!!

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    1. I know, I'm not sure where this fancy horse came from!

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  5. So cool you have T to do all this stuff with!

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    1. Hahahaha poor Paddy would be out of his mind at having to put so much effort into life.

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  6. What an awesome clinic. You guys look so fancy.

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  7. Damn Girl! You two are looking fabulous!

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  8. Gosh what amazing inspiration pictures for me!

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  9. *swoon* those trot pics 😍😍😍

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    1. I know! I want that trot every day.

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