The joy of being an AA

Work has been killing me. 50 to 70 hour weeks for over a month. I am exhausted. Burnt out.

I also don’t get anything for all this overtime. No overtime pay, no extra time off..

I can’t even reap extra money for all this hard work. *sigh* No new brushing boots for Joy again this year.

My first show is a week away. I’m not sure what to expect.

I’m still struggling every ride with either making her too hot and tense, yet better balanced, or supple and relaxed, yet horribly on her forehand. I can’t seem to get balanced, supple, forward, and relaxed all in one ride.

We have some fabulous moments though.

Our lengthen canter (aka go fast) elludes me, but we have a very nice downward transition. She engages well under herself. It’s quite neat to feel. There’s not much length of back on a pony so you really feel the back coil and the haunches come under.

Our lengthen trot has gotten a wee bit better. More lengthen in the stride. However, we can’t hold it long. Not long enough even for a short diagonal.

You know what’s really improved? We can do simple transistions down the quarter line like nobody’s business. Not exactly a staple of dressage tests though. Super fun to ride though! Weeee!!!

Anyway, I just don’t know how this whole show will go. We’re not really ready for First Level Test 3. We’ve got the canter loops and leg yields, but no real lengthens. I can’t get a stretchy trot at all if she gets tense. It’s so easy to accidentally make her tense, and so hard to relax her again.

Since this will be her first time off property in 2 years, and only the second show she’s ever been to, I’m not expecting it to go all that well…

But… I’m hoping to take her to a few more shows this year, and I think she’ll get used to it pretty fast. She’s always had a really fantastic brain on her. Adapts well. Maybe the second show we can show off our training a bit better, or the third. We’ll see.

Adult Amateur Obstacles and Support

I found some links to hopefully help us Adult Amateurs at least feel a little less alone, a little less embarrassed for not being perfect.

I’ll add additional links as I find them. And feel free to add a comment on any links you know of and I’ll add them to the post.

The Adult Amateur Dressage Initiative

https://www.facebook.com/TheAdultAmateurDressageInitiative

Mission

“This page is for the advancement of the Adult Amateur Dressage Rider as defined by USEF GR1306 . Our AIM is to attract USDF and USEF members to this site in order to discuss and develop ideas that we will present, as a united front, to our national organizations to implement FOR US! We are working for greater recognition in the programing for, and funding of, the Adult Amateur Dressage Riders in the USA by the USDF and the USEF. We are lobbying our national organizations for parity in educational programs, funds, grants, transitional classes to rise through USDF and FEI levels, equal access to elite clinics, equal representation as riders in said clinics, and, consequently, in the recognized competitions. As the majority members, and the absolute, ECONOMIC BASE of these oganizations, we are committed to bettering the education, the riding, the training, the competition opportunities, and the overall quality of the American Adult Amateur Dressage Community. We are open to any Adult Amateur Rider, any Professional, Judge, or Licensed Official interested in supporting our Goals.”

 

Adult Amateur Dressage Shame: Riding the Roller Coaster

http://dressagedifferent.com/2013/08/12/adult-amateur-dressage-shame-riding-the-roller-coaster/

Excerpt:

Dressage is unique within the horse world in producing a phenomenon in its participants, a feeling of being lesser than, not good enough or unworthy. It is a condition that I have termed “Adult Amateur Dressage Shame”, but it effects juniors, young riders, and even professionals. Perhaps it is the constantly increasing standard of difficulty or the emphasis on detail, but I have seen the effects of ‘dressage shame’ again and again.

 

Dressage for Adult Amateurs

https://www.facebook.com/groups/243375149019308/

Adult Amateur Dressage Riders welcome!!! Discussion, support, help, rant, rave and praise!!! Open to everyone.