Caroline and Sunny return after a four month break due to the second lockdown in the UK.
Caroline has been working through the Rider Biomechanics Certification Programme, so has been in contact with Ali through that, and says that in her training it’s her right side on her left rein that she loses. To begin with they reassess Caroline’s alignment. In this instance, thinking about looking towards Sunny’s right ear is a good way to get towards being straight. They also asses straightness riding corners, and Ali comments that focusing on turning like a bus in walk gives you more clues for when you go in to trot.
They discuss the idea of ‘push your hands against something’ and ‘push your hands up against something’. Sunny would like to go down with his neck, so thinking of keeping hands pushing up against something, like a table, can help discourage this.
Thinking of leg yielding left to turn, while on the left rein can also help assist the turn.
On the right rein Sunny is more balanced, and keeping the rhythm is easier, but Caroline finds it hard to land both seat bones. They test Caroline’s ability to land both seat bones and keep an outside rein as they change on to the left rein. Ali asks what she lost first, Caroline thinks that she lost the rotation first, then everything followed after that.
It’s easier for Caroline to land on seat bones on right rein. They change rein again and Caroline is able to keep the straightness when focusing on what it is that might ‘go’ first.
In canter caroline has been trying to go to something more like netball, rather than football. This is more tricky on the left rein. Ali says that the transition is about being able to hold your body so that the only choice Sunny has is to go in to left canter, rather than getting him more reactive to the aid for canter.
Caroline thinks about sitting on her bones, hands up. The canter when it starts could have even more bear down, even more core. Especially on the right rein. Thinking ‘as if you’re going to trot, don’t trot’. Thinking again of stepping Sunny left in to left canter also helps the transition.