The Weight of the Reins

How much do your reins weigh? Well this could be a deeply metaphorical image for getting your life under control but fear not….I am just talking about the reins in your hands when you ride a horse. In dressage the ultimate goal is to have the contact with the horse so light that you only feel the weight of the actual reins.

In my history with Biasini I have had far more weight than just the reins. How about a steam engine pulling me along or me pulling back with about 10 pounds in each hand? But over time with help and reminders from my coaches that is improving all the time. Now there are many moments when the contact is light and I only have the weight of the reins in my hands. But then I rest for a second and Whoops! It is gone.

Biasini and I are back in training with my Canadian coach Belinda Trussell. I always start the warm up with a relaxed walk and then a trot where Biasini stretches his head and neck lower to stretch his back and free him up. But in the canter I pick him up and ask him to carry his own head and neck and bring his shoulders up and power his stride from behind. Here is a video of our warm up canter. Belinda is multi tasking with teaching watching and videoing.

Once we have finished the warm up I pick him up for the trot work. In this lesson Belinda was helping me to work on consistency in the balance. I will share some video of our work.

Then as the lesson progresses I start to get a better result with balancing Biasini and getting more consistency and expression.


Next time I will tell you about how volume in the canter can be liberating. Have an enjoyable weekend!

13 Comments Add yours

  1. sscribner07 says:

    I just love this post! I really enjoy the video with the instruction as well. I completely understand what you mean about having to be on top of it 100% of the time. Though Blade and I don’t ride often he is certainly a rider horse that doesn’t prefer passengers. I always have to be working just as hard as he is to maintain light contact. It makes us better riders in the end, right?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. anne leueen says:

      I agree. It does make us better riders. Every horse I have ridden has something to teach me. I just have to figure out how to learn it.😀

      Like

      1. sscribner07 says:

        I have the same philosophy!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Emma Cownie says:

    Well, I can’t take my dogs for a walk without hem pulling a bit on the leads, so I am very impressed if you can achieve “light” reins with a horse!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. anne leueen says:

      Depending on the size of the dogs it may be possible to pull them back but a horse with 1200 pounds and massive strength in the neck and shoulders it is a loosing battle. So the rider has to find ways of getting the horse to keep the frame and the balance and be light in the contact. It is not easy but at least I am improving!😀

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Love watching you two! Beautiful team and so inspiring 💕

    Liked by 1 person

    1. anne leueen says:

      Thank you! I very much appreciate your support.

      Like

  4. dprastka says:

    You are so inspiring as I know that work is hard, and when the reins feel almost weightless and your horse is engaged what a great feeling. You two look BEAUTIFUL! Love watching your videos, like I’m there watching your lesson! Thank you for sharing! ❤️❤️❤️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. anne leueen says:

      You are most welcome Diana. I’m so glad you like watching the videos and can get something from them.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. sandyjwhite says:

    I’m sure it feels good to be making steady progress, Anne! You and Biasini have a good weekend.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. anne leueen says:

      I hope you will have a good weekend too Sandy

      Liked by 1 person

  6. map195 says:

    wonderful post anne….beautiful horse

    Liked by 1 person

    1. anne leueen says:

      Thanks for taking the time to leave this nice comment. Have a good weekend.

      Like

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