She spent a long time going over it with me. Many times when I hear my instructor talk I feel like I am underwater and her words need a long time to reach my brain...like someone talking in a different language that I know a little of. I think it's because I'm very new so I'm not used to discussing horsey terminology.
Anyway I want to list the steps in putting a horse on the bit so you can help me out and correct me if I'm wrong.
1. The horse must be moving forward actively
2. The hands are steady and the seat is braced against both reins
3. When the horse dips her head into the correct position I loosen the inside rein by giving with my hand (NOT lengthening the rein), and I keep steady contact with the outside rein
4. At all times my elbows should be bent and my arms should never stretch out
5. To help the horse dip her head I can "massage" the inside rein, sort of like squeezing the water out of a sponge.
That's what I can remember...it sounds really hard right now!! By the end of the lesson she actually did get on the bit ..though I was so surprised that I immediately lengthened the reins LOL.
One thing I am confused about is, if the horse raises her head, does the distance from her bit to my hands shorten? And thus the reins become looser? Because when I ride that's how it feels like. My instructor kept saying I was lengthening them when she raised her head. But to me it felt like the reins just naturally became looser, so in that case, I should shorten them if she raises her head??
Do you have any advice for me? I don't think I have ever faced such a complicated task in riding. Even cantering is easier!