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Observations from...updated with my second Recognized Show - Post 23

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  • Observations from...updated with my second Recognized Show - Post 23

    Had a great time this weekend at my first recognized dressage show. My horse and I definitely have things to work on, but he was at his best this weekend.

    Here are some things I noted:
    1. The talent was inspiring and fascinating to watch, especially compared to the schooling shows I normally attend! The wine social during musical freestyles was great fun!

    2. People arrive early, move in, and stay for the duration, where at the schooling shows, they arrive, warm up, show, and leave. You get to know your "neighbors" and there is more camaraderie.

    3. There are people living in different universes than me. I watched some very nice ladies that stood around fixing each others hairnets until it was time to mount their perfectly prepped horses. They had grooms and trainers and assistants and schedules! I was picking shavings out of my horse's tail and (re)cleaning up his white up until the last minute. But they were the nicest "neighbors".

    4. There are some who feel they need to comment negatively on others and they don't care who is around to hear. One woman was loudly proclaiming that ANY horse with ANY rider could get at least a 50% at Training Level, and as a Training Level rider who had just worked hard to score a 55% (darned off course error!), I was insulted. Another two women were lamenting the posting trot at First Level, saying that now First Level was the "new Training Level" and people were moving up when they shouldn't be, etc. If they honestly feel that way, fine, but please keep in mind that the two women in front of you might be working their butts off to get to First Level!

    5. I love my horse and we are making great progress! We received on 8 on one of our halts, which is something we have worked hard on! I forget to ride it with both legs and he wants to park out (Saddlebred) and stand wide behind. We received an 8 on gaits in one test, and on another test were comments like "confident horse" and "attentive horse".

    This past year, our first year in the study of dressage, has been a wonderful journey, and I can't wait to continue the process.

    Last edited by Paddys Mom; Mar. 17, 2012, 11:42 PM.

  • #2
    There's always snarky people - I just ignore them.

    Cute horses who is spotlessly presented - nice job. And where did he get those legs? They appear to go on forever.

    You did a nice job riding him. I think to make 60% I'd suggest a few things. At Training level most judges like to see the horses nose SLIGHTLY in front of the vertical. In this case, since I saw you "booting" him a few times, perhaps allowing just a tad more rein and using leg to push him into that rein would get you another point in almost every movement.

    Just before "A" you did a circle - I think it was supposed to be a stretchy circle? If you as soon as you start the circle at "A" start lengthening the rein and use your legs to push him into the longer rein. Use your posting to prevent him from speeding up. Post straight up and down to help prevent him from falling on his forehand. At stretchy trot (and free walk) you want to see a nice arch in the horses neck while it is also stretching down (some horses stretch down more easily than others but using a give/take on alternating reins while using legs to push horse forward will help get more stretch while helping keep them off their forehand.

    Last thing (a nit) I noticed was your using inside rein for turn down centerline. Instead weight (slightly) inside stirrup (right one in this case) while doing a squeeze/release on outside rein.

    For your first recognized you did well. If you follow this advice I'm betting on at least a 60% next ride - you have the basics down, now they need refining.

    Best of luck.
    Now in Kentucky


    • #3
      As one who is part of the team responsible for putting on that show every summer, I want to thank you for coming and I'm thrilled that (apart from the railbirds) you had a good experience.
      Donald Trump - proven liar, cheat, traitor and sexual predator! Hillary Clinton won in 2016, but we have all lost.


      • Original Poster

        Yes, that was supposed to be a stretchy trot circle.
        Unfortunately, we did not have a good connection before A, so that stretchy circle was not stretchy.

        I tend to not ride him forward enough at shows. It comes from our first few outings where he would get unpredictable and I was afraid and backed off. So now that he is sane I have to focus on riding him forward and sometimes I did have to boot him forward. I do think I let my reins get too short this test.

        That ride was a 60%.


        • Original Poster

          Originally posted by SillyHorse View Post
          As one who is part of the team responsible for putting on that show every summer, I want to thank you for coming and I'm thrilled that (apart from the railbirds) you had a good experience.
          Oh it was wonderful and I am really not wanting to go to schooling shows anymore!! Everything was on time and the show ran like clockwork!


          • Original Poster

            The warm up rings at dressage shows tend to freak me out a little too. They are so chaotic, with everyone riding different figures in different directions. I worry so much about running into someone or someone running into me that it is hard for me to get really warmed up. And yes, I know pass left to left, but that becomes muddled when people are making 20 meter circles off the rail or leg yielding to the rail.


            • #7
              What a lovely pair you two make!! Ditto to Val on the stretching... that can be one of the hardest things for Saddlebreds. It can make a remarkable difference if you spend a lot of time working on just getting him to stretch into your hand at the walk, in your warmups, walk breaks, cooldowns, etc. Even just hop on and work on a nice stretching walk for 5-10 mins on your off days... the effects will show throughout all his gaits, plus the stretching movements are coefficients.

              Ignore the snark - you came with an impeccably groomed, obedient horse and were obviously well prepared for your Training level tests. Well done!
              "Winter's a good time to stay in and cuddle,
              but put me in summer and I'll be a... happy snowman!!!"

              Trolls be trollin'! -DH


              • #8
                First, I did not note where you were from prior to clicking on the video, but my first thought is "that looks like Grand Haven!" I moved south almost two years ago, but showed there many times. It was always a good time and a nice place to hang out for a weekend.

                Glad to hear you had fun, and I can tell you that most of my friends are the ones also picking stalls, feeding and doing all that stuff. We are also the ones who drank a bottle of champagne (w/ no orange juice) at 9 am after my first PSG test!

                This dressage thing truly is a journey, sometimes a frustrating one and other times a very rewarding one. I personally like the challenge and the learning and the ability to measure progress.
                We don't get less brave; we get a bigger sense of self-preservation........


                • #9
                  I am so glad you had a great show! Dressage truly is a passion and I love to hear about great experiences along the journey!! There is always more to learn, something to improve, etc. Just make sure you bask in the glory of the things you did really well before you move on to worrying about the things you need to improve. Great job!!!

                  As for the negative nancies who like to talk down about others, I find it helps if I chuckle loudly every time they say something nasty. It makes them self-conscious, LOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


                  • #10
                    great test, accurate score. To have higher score and move up must have more forward impulsion (the video makes it look like he could stop any time) and more roundness- gets above the bit intermittently. The forward and round will help the stretchy circle, and help you move to the next level.

                    You are a great pair, lovely turnout


                    • #11
                      Hey, nice ride. I like your horse, and you look like a very handy rider as well. And what a beautiful venue.


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Paddys Mom View Post
                        Yes, that was supposed to be a stretchy trot circle.
                        Unfortunately, we did not have a good connection before A, so that stretchy circle was not stretchy.

                        I tend to not ride him forward enough at shows. It comes from our first few outings where he would get unpredictable and I was afraid and backed off. So now that he is sane I have to focus on riding him forward and sometimes I did have to boot him forward. I do think I let my reins get too short this test.

                        That ride was a 60%.
                        I wondered (thought from tyour post it was scored in the 50's) as it didn't seem like a ride that should have scored in the 50's...so use the improvements I suggested and you'll score a nice 65%!
                        Now in Kentucky


                        • #13
                          Hey, we were barn neighbors at that show!
                          I didn't realize that was your first recognized show. You seemed very calm an collected. Nice to see your test online, since I didn't get to see any of your you rides "live".

                          It was a beautiful weekend! Everything ran smoothly and was well organized!! I know ML was responsible for the great weather.... :-)

                          Are you coming back for the WPDA show?


                          • Original Poster

                            Yes, I was surprisingly calm! LOL!
                            There was a COTH thread that helped with that.

                            You were a very gracious neighbor.
                            I borrowed your sweat scrape.
                            I'm glad our horses enjoyed each others company.

                            I see your second test went according to plan. Congrats!

                            I will not be back for WPDA.
                            My next schooling show will be at Grand Haven at the end of August, then the October NODA Championships at Chagrin, and my next recognized will likely be in April at Lake Erie.


                            • #15
                              You two make a nice pair and you're well turned out. Awesome to hear that your first recognized show went so well!

                              The only advice I have to give his let him stretch a bit more and be more forward. You're probably already aware of that though

                              I'd be very pleased with myself for the results you received. Nice work.


                              • #16
                                My next schooling show will be at Grand Haven at the end of August, then the October NODA Championships at Chagrin, and my next recognized will likely be in April at Lake Erie.
                                I might come to the Chagrin show. Rocky River for sure, since it's fairly close to us.
                                Not planing as far ahead as April, but thinking about the November show at LEC.

                                Enjoy the rest of the show season! You should be very pleased with your horse and yourself!!


                                • #17
                                  Hey, I was there too. Saw your tests and you did a great job and had a nice ride. I rode training 2 as well on the little(15 hand) bay Oldenburg mare. That was my 4th recognized show 2nd riding her. My first show with her I was so nervous I went down center line stopped and paused -- 'I'm suppose to be doing something now' oh, yeah -- salute. Hope to see you at more shows!


                                  • #18
                                    Paddy's Mom, I had to laugh out loud when I read your 'take' on the dressage warmup arena. Back in the days before 'organized schooling' at hunter/jumper shows, EVERYONE got in the ring and jumped fences. It was truly for the not-of-faint-hearted. A loud "Heads up!" USUALLY preceded takeoff - and was directed at the person standing in front of the fence being jumped. If you lived through that, going in for your round was easy!!!

                                    I'm so glad you had a wonderful first experience. Horse shows of whatever denomination should be FUN -delighted that yours was. And when you overhear the snarks, just "consider the source" because the snarks are the ones who lack confidence in their own rides/ability.

                                    Equine Photography in the Northeast


                                    • #19
                                      Paddysmom (and I remember paddy!)- I think you did a fine job for your first recognized show. It is a very different environment than the schooling shows (esp. the NODA shows). At least the venue was familiar for you- that had to help a little. Next show will be tons better (not that 60% is bad mind you!).

                                      I will miss seeing you at Crosswinds this weekend- don't forget to get your entry in asap for the Chagrin saturday show if you plan to attend. The shows have been filling before the closing ate.

                                      Equi88- I'm sure I know who you are- just don't know the screen name! If you plan to show at RR enter early! I have 10 on the waiting list for Crosswinds this weekend and RR is always busier than CW.
                                      Last edited by Posse977; Aug. 11, 2011, 11:42 AM. Reason: typo!


                                      • #20
                                        Posse: Holy Cow, Rocky River opens on Tuesday! Now I feel rushed.. :-))
                                        I know of several people that want to show RR. Will let them know to get their entries ready! Thanks!!