Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Jacksonville, NC
Yes, that's correct. Doing simple changes are a prelude to flying changes. If you're letting your horse canter on the incorrect lead, you're teaching them that that's the correct way to canter. I did the hunter B & A circuit for years and it's more favorable to a judge if you do a simple change rather than canter on the incorrect lead because it shows that you know and can feel your leads.
As far as critique...you have a lovely horse and for the most part you are a quiet rider. You're correct in that your lower leg needs to come back in between fences (lots of no stirrup work and two point will help that), but when you jump, your leg swings back too far. You need to work on distributing your weight down your body and into your heels. Not forcing your heels down, but simply transferring your weight so that your heels become your anchors. Also, you are a bit slow to come back after your horse lands, you continue to lean forward a few strides away from the fence which leaves you not in control right after the fence. This won't hurt you in a course like this, but as you progress and move up to more challenging courses (combinations, tighter turns, etc), you will need to be able to sit up and regain control as soon as your horse lands.
The second jump, you were anticipating it too much and leaned forward way before the jump. If your horse had refused, you probably would have gone right over his head. This caused him to lean forward and jump flat. You need to work on letting your horse do the jumping and closing your hip angles for you. Throwing yourself forward will only cause him to get too much on his forehand which could lead to chipping in a stride before takeoff, refusing, or knocking down the jump.
All in all though, you did a great job!