Tuesday, July 27, 2010

The Plunge

So I sent off my entry for the SVDA Summer Show in Williamsburg, VA.
It's my first recognized dressage show.

I entered two classes Training Level 1 and Training Level 2, both opportunity classes. I haven't renewed my membership with USEF. One of my earlier goals was to get qualified for the USDF All Breeds Award, but I'd have to compete in at least 4 shows. But with it being so late in the season I'm going to forgo that goal.

My best friend is coming with me to be my groom. :) My family may also come to the show.

I wanted to get a new jacket and such, but I've decided to not get one right now. I've been eating better and working out so I've been getting slimmer. So I'm going to wait until later to get a new jacket.

Monday, July 26, 2010


Yesterday I attended the Catherine Haddad clinic as an auditor. I traveled to Patrick & Lani Tigchelaar's stable in Hanover, Va.

We left bright and early, because the clinic started at 6:00am.
She's an amazing clinican. She's an American rider, but her stable is in Germany. She really has a clear way of explaining things and really has a good eye.
I really wish I could have rode with her. She's amazing.

When I got to the barn that night. I decided to ride without my stirrups again. She was being spooky so I warmed her up until she stop being a pain in the ass.
After she settled down I took away my stirrups and rode both directions again for about 20 minutes. My seat is improving. So I'm please with that. I won't have a lesson for another week, which will be good, because I need some sort of guidance or plan. I wish I could take more lessons so I can stay consistent.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Modest Modest Me

So I'm not sure if it's my Asian upbrining or what. But I'm not big on compliments. They tend to make me uncomfortable sometimes. The biggest one that I hated growing up as a kid is when I would go to the dentist and here "You're teeth are beautiful. Have you had braces." "No," I say. "REALLY!!! Amazing!!!"
I hate that. I don't know what to say to stuff like that. I'll be sure to tell my parents that their chromosomes contributed to a damn good set of teeth.

Growing up I was never a god awful rider. I'm no Beezie Madden, but I learned to ride like a hunt seat equitation princess. When I showed as a teen I won Championships at the local shows. But to me it's all the horse.

My hard work is what I put into the horse. If we win, it's the horse that did the good job. I'm just the tool. When someone says good test or course or whatever I take more pride that my horse does well. Not myself.

Last night I was talking to my friend. She was telling me that I've improved so much in the past year. I'm like my horse is gotten better, she was like NO! Your riding has improved and she has too in her own ways. She told me I use to ride like a hunter princess and now I'm riding like a dressage princess.

I do feel great tho. I'm losing weight and I feel healthier and I feel like I'm a better rider now than ever before. :) So I'll have a moment of immodesty I'm awesome. haha. :)

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Look Ma No Stirrups

I've been watching a lot of Catherine Haddad videos on dressagetrainingonline.com I have to say that website rocks my socks! I really like her training style and how she explains things. But because I've been sick and the weather unagreable I haven't been in the saddle.

So last night I got back into work. I worked on a few things that I worked with Patrick on. Then I took a little of what I watched from Catherine's videos and applied it. Our canter departs were rocking!

I was making Lilly move very forward and one thing Catherine repeats is that if they're something that bothers them don't mess with it. Don't let it bother you. She was being crazy in one corner. Another thing she said was you have to go with a young horse. I mean I always have known that. You don't want to tense up when they're going crazy. You have a tendency to just bounce right off if you're tense as a rock.

I said crazy I mean she was bucking bronco crazy. I sat up and put my a_s in the saddle and rode it like a champ. lol. Then I put both legs on her and made her hand gallop. Then we went back like nothing happen.
My friend was commented on her big stride. She was concentrating on her own horse she didn't see the National Bucking Championship in the corner only the big canter. :P

After I finished working on her I worked on myself. I put up my stirrups and rode without. I was feeling brave, and asked for a canter.
Canter departures were rocking and I wasn't tense and I rode it.

I'm very proud of myself. 8 months ago 1. I wouldn't have trusted her. 2. I'd be so tense that I would have fallen off.

So I'm pretty happy with myself and her. :)

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Sick and Blah

I've been fighting a cold, an upper respiratory infection to be exact. So I rode very minimal. It really saps your energy level.
Last night was a perfect night to ride, it wasn't humid, just right. But I wasn't feeling good still. *x*

So instead I read a book and let Lilly graze for about 40 minutes. The Anna Buffet was open to all the local mosquitoes.

I totally forgot I had turned on the water for the trough, so my friend's mare was snorting at the trough. Then I was like OH SNAP! So I ran over turned it off. And she just looked at me like dumb human. haha.

I don't feel very good still, but the barn makes everything better. So I'll hack a little tonight or just ride around bareback.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Patrick Tigchelaar Lesson

So on recommendation from my friend Nadege, Danica and I went to Doswell, VA to take a lesson from Patrick Tigchelaar.


He asked me a little about myself and her. I told him the speel: I'm from a hunter/jumper background so I worry about my position; she get's a little fussy about accepting contact and judges always say she needs to develop her topline more.

So he watches us ride for a few minutes before diving into the lesson.

He had us work on getting her to step more underneath herself. So we did half pass (I believe walking side ways type stuff) against the wall. He praised her for being very smart and learning it quickly.

He really had a very easy way of explaining things. He kept on telling me don't do all the work. When you apply the leg she must listen. Which from my hunter background it's opposite we're very proud of our very strong lower leg. Probably why I see some dressage folks lower legs all swingy and I cringe.

Also really started to understand the concept of lightness in the reins, but for whatever reason it clicked with him.

But I began to understand what he's talking about. He really had me move her very forward and do circles making them small and then making them bigger. She really began to respond.
Then we worked on the canter. I told him she has a big canter but I just don't know what to do with it. He said once she's getting better we'll start to do fun stuff, basics first. :P
He really did like her, he said she has a good walk/trot/canter.

We're scheduled to go back August 7th. Danica enjoyed her lesson as well.