Except for the shad, of course. That's just a little too formal for us to school in.
How, might you ask, did we make the leap from local training level rider to international dressage stars?
Good question. The answer is twofold.
1) We were able to use the outdoor arena for the first time since November.
2) The footing was freshly worked and pretty deep.
Yep. I had already turned Izzy out in the indoor where she went gallopy-gallop-buck-buck for about 5 or 10 minutes, so I thought she'd be super quiet. WRONG! I put her on the lunge line and the mare PASSAGED around me, first one way, then the other. She did seem responsive, despite being totally wired, so I got on.
The first five minutes of our ride were AMAZING. She had this incredible forward energy and suspension. Then she started settling down and realized that yes, this is the same outdoor we rode in last fall, and dang, it is hard work to keep up that crazy gait.
Back to training level. It took a while to get her balanced to the point I've had her in the indoor. She wasn't very focused and after she gave up on that crazy energy surge, I had to work a lot harder. Still, she was decent. We got some lovely canter work with some actual shorten/lengthen in the canter. Yay!
Oh, and the turnouts were finally open, too. Happy mare got to go out and eat the hay I threw her.
ETA: Thanks to Denali's mom for making us a new header. It's more winter appropriate, I think.