Struggling with free walk on a long rein
I'm struggling with free walk on a long rein, I just can't get the hang of it :oops::-( I really need some top tips to up my marks and get it right as I only scored a 5 on the last test and the judge had underlined "long rein" twice. What am I doing wrong and what should I be doing? I don't fee I can give a longer rein without chucking the contact away :? Hattie did briefly stretch down, but not as much as usual.
Any thoughts would be most welcome :)
Go to 2.50 (it was only a short diagonal of H to B)
(This is only our second prelim test as Hattie is still quite green at this and we have only recently been working on canter)
Weeell....it wasn't a long rein. And she was not accepting it at all, remaining in the , for her, proper position.
I would have her trot fresh forward, without gathering reins. Have her search for the bit. Then gather her, and again, open your fingers and let HER lengthen the rein( let her chew the reins out of your hand....literally translation from German lol). Once she does it in a trot, try the walk.
She might not quite trust your hand yet.
And you can do that in canter too.
Once she takes the reins by herself, without hurrying, she will nicely stretch into the longer rein.
Im sure the dressage experts here can explain it in more technical terms, lol, nut I just couldn't come up with them....6 in the morning....:-)
I'm not sure I know what you mean by her "proper position" as she doesn't normally carry her head this low
She will stretch right down in trot and maintain a steady pace, but not in canter yet as she is not balanced enough yet. But she certainly has a long rein in this photo although I agree she could go lower and usually does but the short diagonal doesn't give many strides to do this.
Your free walk will improve with practice at an extended walk. I would suggest transitions between sitting trot and walk. Push to the sitting trot, then gently half halt to an extended walk, but keep your legs on. I would trot for only about 10 trot strides at first, and then lessen them so that you can push to the sitting trot for only 2 strides for half halting to the walk. Ride the extended walk all the way around the arena before transitioning again to the sitting trot, then repeat.
I KNOW that I've not shown Dressage BUT, I've done years and years of CW Reenacting Cavalry, where we travel distances at the WALK, plus years and years of trail riding. You want to show that you are in control of your horse, and, at the same time, that your horse has impulsion at the walk. This is one way to get there. =D
No judge IMO will give you a good score at the free walk if your horse is "at the mosey."
Then what's the problem?
What Corporal said..lol....I will not attempt to explain something like that so early in the morning ever again....
I was taught getting a horse " on the rein" in a walk, before it is steady in trot and canter( on the rein), it will destroy forward movement.
I wonder if you could also use a bitting rig and lunge her so that she can "find the bit" without you on her back. Bitting Rig is aka Pessoa, btw.
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