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Rhythm, balance, suppleness, obedience, impulsion.
Not necessarily in that order.
 

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Dressage. Nothing else to it.
Posted via Mobile Device
 

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To me if you bounce around on the horse's back then you can't ride. There shouldn't be air between you and the saddle except when you want there to be. Using your hands and legs effectively depends on being able to sit/post correctly.
 

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Pony boy make a good point..
Balance, rhythm, suppleness, impulsion, flat work, flat work, flat work, FLAT WORK and good balance!
 

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Good balance and a good seat- you can't progress far if you don't develop them. Transitions and steering on a very very basic level but i think balance and seat are the core to it really.
 

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Working on balance,
Two point posting on the right diagonal. etc
 

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Remember your position is very important with english riding. THere should be a straight line from your shoulder to your hip to your heel. Its a difficult thing though, if you fix one tiny thing of yourself you might find flaw with, you will probably discover there's something else going wrong!
 

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Well personally I think:

Heels down, look up.. Then, toes pointed out, hands up off the neck, straight back, watch where your hands are positioned, & your elbow.

But yes, rhythm and balance are the two main components. :)
 
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