Back in November, I started working at a new barn; where a woman who owns, breeds, and trains her own horses was keeping her 8-9 year old mare -- who turned out to be 3rd-level Dressage. I would watch her between stalls, and found myself captivated.
For the past 2-3 years, I've ridden bareback or Western. But the trail riding, barrel racing, and pole bending just didn't provide enough mental stimulation for me, or my partners. I originally had a peak interest in Western Reining and Cutting, but couldn't find any instructors nearby.
So I began to slowly ask questions to this rider about Dressage.
She has me sold. As soon as it dries up (Spring time or so) and we can begin using her outdoor arena, I will begin taking Dressage lessons from the woman I met (I also eavesdropped and watched several of the lessons she had). I'll be taking lessons on her 17.2 Throughbred/Clydesdale mare (the aforementioned mare's dam), or on the mare I mentioned above.
Would anyone happen to have any suggestions for "the" switch? I've never been in an English saddle, so I'm also curious about how I'll feel with it... And truth be told, I have no idea what to expect.
Note: I will continue riding Western; Dressage is simply to work on my posture, balance, and discipline. I have no current plans of getting competitive.