My horse and I are going to a 4-H state show mid August, and we're the only pair within a 60 mile radius going. Nobody from our 4-H district has gone in a ton of years. While I'm not expecting too much, I do want to give it my best shot!
I'm basically looking for any tips you have, or exercises I can work on over the next few weeks. Obviously I'm not going to be able to change a whole lot in that amount of time, but I want to definitely try!
We're showing in two english flat classes and two western pleasure classes. Mostly I'm looking for collection exercises (real collection, not just a fake, non-collected headset!!) and exercises to get his movement bigger. One of his habits is to have nice movement in the front but not reach his back legs in enough at all the gaits. I know that's an issue with collection, so I'd love ideas! I work a lot with roll-backs and circles, but I need things to keep him thinking.
And tips for standing out in the show ring, but not in a bad way :)
I have a lighter colored hunt coat (still conservative and appropriate for showing!) and that seems to help separate me from every other black and navy jacket in the ring, but I'd like really any tips! My horse is a solid chestnut with a white star, so I can't brighten markings or anything.
For western standing out is easier since you have freedom of colors, but I'd like anything you have to throw out there.