Lately, I've been thinking that it's time to take the next step and start Johnny's dressage training for real. Last week I looked at a friends dressage saddle which she has for sale and I think I'm probably going to buy it. Of course, that transaction probably won't be going through until May because I don't have the money right now (I need to go work a horse show!) but I will in another month or so :) In the mean time, I borrowed a friend's dressage saddle and worked Johnny in it last night for the first time. It is SO much easier to get Johnny to really work correctly when I have the right tools to do it! Just having the different seat of the dressage saddle made sitting his trot a whole lot easier. We worked on some leg-yield and shoulder-in last night (he didn't like shoulder in at the trot...but was very good in the walk) and then also worked for a while on a circle with me taking up and letting out the contact. To finish, I trotted him both direction on a loose rein ans let him stretch. Can you believe that he actually kept his inside shoulder lifted? Even to the right! It was pretty exciting :) I plan on working him a little in the side reins today before doing some more dressage work.
As promised, here is our tentative spring/summer show schedule. I've picked one or two shows a month that I think will be good training and experience for Johnny AND that doesn't conflict with my grooming schedule:
(** marks a show as tentative)
~ March - LEC Jumper show**
~ April - None...lots of schooling because it's our last month up here at school with a nice indoor arena!
~ May - South Farm Combined Test (May 29-30th)
~ June - South Farm Combined Test (June 5-6th) / SCSHA Open Show**
~ July - Chagrin Valley Classic (goal is to actually just complete the course this time!)
~ August - Brecksville Horse Show (Aug.1st) / Bath Pony Club Mini Trial
~ September - South Farm Mini Trial** (Depends on my school schedule...but I REALLY want to go!)
~ October - South Farm Hunter Pace** (Oct. 3rd)
(My FAVORITE hunter pace, but this all depends on what my school schedule is like)
Of course, this is all subject to change depending on my financial situation and trailering opportunities. Since I don't have my own trailer, I have to get rides with friends or call J, who usually trailers me almost anywhere. C generally likes to do the mini trials and combined tests, so I will probably try to go with her!
Thats all for now :) Hopefully getting some pictures posted later today.