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Spastic_Dove 03-24-2009 05:29 PM

Newbie Questions
So the goal is to compete in some schooling dressage tests this year. I was trying to find some online tests I could practice at home. The only ones I could find were mostly Training level. I did find one or two Intro tests. So I have some questions about interpreting the tests as I am totally new to this and feel like a dork for asking so be nice lol

(Intro test for referance:

"Halt Through Medium Walk" So I am interpretting this as come down the center line at a posting trot, go down to a medium walk, then halt?

At C it says "Track right medium walk" Is this just turning? I just turn towards M in this example and then go down the wall?


"F X H change rein" No idea what that means

So my other question is what are some of the movements I should be practicing for a very beginner (intro?) test. It looks like they ask you to start from a halt to trot so far I think this will have to be the one I work on the most aside from round circles, and whatnot.

Any tips?

xx chico 03-24-2009 05:35 PM

All I can say is don't forget to salute your judge. For whatever reason at our shows at my old barn I would always forget that part lol (luckily they were in-house shows :-) ).

Other then that, I'm not very educated in dressage so I can't really say much lol.

Spastic_Dove 03-24-2009 05:41 PM

Haha I'm so paranoid about saluting wrong that I don't think I will. I just hope I don't give an army salute like I'm paranoid I will =P

xx chico 03-24-2009 05:48 PM

I actually know the answers for these though lol (just realised)

At C it says "Track right medium walk" Is this just turning? I just turn towards M in this example and then go down the wall?

- So you know how theres letter all around the ring right? Well at C you would be making sure you were on the right rein (turn right), and be moving in a medium walk

"F X H change rein" No idea what that means

- X is usually the middle of the WHOLE ring. so you would turn at F head through the middle (change your diagonal basically) towards H and then go which ever that direction would lead you (I cant picture where the letters are lol)

Hope that helps :-)

Spastic_Dove 03-24-2009 05:57 PM

Oh, okay! That makes sense.
I dont remember the order of the letters yet either, thats something else to work on.
Thank you :)

So if it says "Change Rein" does that mean I just change direction any time it says that?

xx chico 03-24-2009 06:13 PM

I think it's if it says change rein at R X B, you'd start changing rein at the letter R and then start your other direction at B. It's not as confusing at is sounds lol. I'm sure one of the Dressage Diva's will answer better then I will lol :-)

I know theres a way to remember the letters, it's something about a fat mare .. blah, blah. I can't remember lol.

mfinelli59 03-24-2009 07:29 PM

Hi, I'm new to the Forum, but do have a bit of dressage knowledge. Though I have to admit that the tests can be extremely difficult to interpret! Now picture a retangular arena where the entrance gate is at A, going straight in, the middle is X and straight ahead is C. Now pretend you're standing at X, directly to your right (on the rail) is B and to the left (on the rail) is E. Now pretend you're standing just inside the gate at A, directly to your right (on the rail) is F and the left is K. And lastly, go down to C and directly to your right is M and left is H. There are other letters in between, but they're used for the more advanced levels.
Now the F X H change rein would mean (if I'm picturing this right!) you must be coming past the A entrance gate from a counter-clockwise direction to that corner letter F where you turn and start heading across the ring diagonally through the center X (where you would change your posting diagonal if you are trotting) and on to the letter H where you would then be turning and tracking clockwise.
Does that help and clear things up?
In the basic level tests just work on travelling straight (shoulders and haunches in a line), keeping your pace consistent and as you said your circles round. You're usually given a few strides for transitions, so you don't need to be able to pick the canter up immediately at the required letter. It can take a couple steps.
Well I guess that's all. I hope I didn't confuse you more!

Spastic_Dove 03-24-2009 08:53 PM

mfinelli, thank you! That makes sense. Another thing -- I have always been taught to sit two beats to change diagnals but I was told at a show, I should stay elevated two beats. Which one is it?

Pinto Pony 03-25-2009 05:10 AM

I have never heard of staying elevated two beats, that sounds kinda weird. In dressage as you get into more advanced levels sitting trot is pretty standard and as far as I know sit two beats to change your rising diagonal.

As for the rhyme, my old instructor had me memorise... "All King Edwards Horses Can Manage Big Fences with an RSVP" but the order for RSVP goes in reverse hehe.

mfinelli59 03-25-2009 09:51 AM

I agree with Pinto Pony. It's sit two beats, not stay elevated two beats. I always thought of it as sitting one "post", though. Good luck! Let us know how you do.

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