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QHDragon 04-27-2010 04:46 AM

Tips for memorizing those darn tests?
How does everybody go about memorizing their tests? I have the USDF Intro 1 to the point where I can do it in my sleep, and I can kinda remember test 2. However now I am adding the two tests from my dressage club and I keep getting the two confused. Any suggestions? :lol:

Gidji 04-27-2010 04:57 AM

Those little white boards are life savers :) I tend to just d00dle random squiggles but by drawing my test, its really helpful. I use a straight line for walk, a ------- line for trotting, and a curved ^ line facing whichever lead the canter should be. Another thing that helps is just walking it. So if you're just about to leave for a show and you've got a spare minute, just walk it.

ChingazMyBoy 04-27-2010 05:22 AM

I've got a little white board thingy to ! Its great, once I stop writting song lyrics on it. Only thing I find with it is that drawing over the lines makes it a bit messy, reccomend more then one colour :)

White Foot 04-27-2010 06:59 AM

It sounds dorky but I make it into a song xD

QHDragon 04-27-2010 07:12 AM

Hmm, might have to try the song thing. :p I all ready turn things like reminding myself to keep my shoulders back and elbows back into songs.

StormyBlues 04-27-2010 11:53 AM

I trace it on paper a million bajillion times.
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jumper25 04-27-2010 12:07 PM

I get a carpet and walk through it going "trot-trot-trot-trot" "can-ter-can-ter." I look nuts but it really helps me to memorize by doing it!

xhaltsalute 04-27-2010 09:19 PM

those are all good ideas. I've definately used a white board, and "ridden" the test without the horse, either at home or in the barn isle. I actually go so far as to do all of the movements (just the front legs though!). Everything from halt/walk/trot/canter, figures, lateral work, mediums and extensions, change of leg, simple change and flying changes. It makes for quite a site at shows, but I find it really helpful with getting a sense of timing and how the test actually rides (i.e. you can even practice collecting yourself in the corner before the extension). I also do up my own cheat sheets, one for each test. I draw a whole bunch of little arenas to scale on one page, and then draw one or two movements in order as little lines(For instance, A enter working trot, X halt salute, C track right, would all go together, but AC serpentine 4 loops with simple changes on the centre line would be drawn by itself. (I have use different colours for walk trot and canter, and put little symbols on the lines to denote lengthenings, mediums, extensions, lateral work and halt. Transitions between gaits are easy to spot because the colour changes.)

IslandWave 04-28-2010 03:13 AM

As for not getting multiple tests mixed up, I usually take the first few movements and note their differences. For example, I did two different tests in our last show. After continuing down the centerline after our halt and salute, one test had me turn right at C and the other had me turn left. I only had to remember the first turn and then I knew which test I was riding.
It also helps to read back your test to someone before you go into the ring or quickly ride through it in your head.
If you've memorized it well enough, just don't stress and it'll come to you.

StormyBlues 04-28-2010 07:53 AM

Yeah, never underestimate using another person. I've listened to a million jumping courses and dressage tests from my friends!
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