“Anything is available.” This is not a philosophical reflection on life or an inspirational quote. It is a comment from Belinda Trussell in my dressage lessons. If I am walking Biasini and go to pick up the trot. Belinda will let me know if I do not plan that departure! I will get a comment like :”He’s on the forehand!” This means Biasini has picked up the trot by pulling himself forward with his front legs instead of lowering his hind quarters and propelling forward from his hind legs. Forward and UP! At the walk I must get him organized to have that kind of depart into the trot. I must know that ‘anything is available’. Could I get an extended trot? Passage? I must feel that when I apply the aid anything is available
In one of our lessons this week we focused on trot-passage transitions . This has nothing to do with the Grand Prix trot-passage transitions. This is about improving the quality and frame of the trot and executing movements in which I can apply aids to make transitions and not get “stuck”. I often get “stuck” in the half pass. My fingers get stuck and do not give enough. My leg aids get stuck and do not come on and off in a rhythm. But if I have to execute transitions then I cannot get stuck.
Belinda also helped me on the ground . She would come next to Biasini and give him a light tap on his hindquarters. This would encourage him to sit more and to give a more passage like trot. Here is a video of some of that work.
We also moved on to work on the trot half pass. Again Belinda reminded me to make corrections as necessary every three strides. In this video you can hear her comment on my walk to trot depart. Not good enough! You can also hear her giving me very positive reinforcement when I make corrections and get Biasini back into the best frame.
This lesson was a very useful one for me . Earlier in the week we had a lesson touching on all the same things and on the day the videos were taken I had specifically requested that same lesson. I felt I needed to repeat it to get it solidified in my head! Belinda told me that now 96% of the time I have him in the correct frame and in the moments when he dips or pulls down I am able to correct him almost instantly. This is progress!
And what did we do the day in between these two lessons? We went out to the forest trails!
- featured photo (C) Connie Gee*