Monday, March 7, 2011

Arena Ballerinas

It is just go, go, go at the barn these days. It's go, go, go once I get home too since I'm up to my ears planning for the show in a few weeks. Good thing I absolutely, totally love doing this!

This past weekend I held a Dressage Test Success Clinic for the girls. I had fun planing an afternoon that would be interactive, informative and interesting.

This is an inspiration board I made. I love making these!

For those of you who don't happen to be equestrians, dressage means training and its like dancing. Dressage horses and riders are like dance partners, like ballerinas searching for elegance, beauty and perfection. There are tests for each level and the levels gradually increase in difficulty. I fell in love with the psychology, theory, mentality and method to dressage at a very young age. I fortunately have had some great teachers and I love getting to share what I've learned.

I broke the clinic down into 3 parts. First there was a short discussion portion with handouts and supporting material (and chocolate) to break down the dressage test components, terms and figures so that everyone understood how to achieve the most success while riding a dressage test. I had the girls draw out each step of the test so they could see exactly where they should be and what they should be doing during each test component.

Next there was an unmounted exercise portion that incorporated balance, stretching, hula hoops and exercise balls to help the riders achieve better position, body awareness and set themselves up for success in the saddle. I even had them run around the dressage arena pretending to be horses to practice the figures.

The mounted riding portion gave the riders the opportunity to practice the figures and exercises in the large, standard size 20x60 m arena that will be used in the show. And they each got a chance to run through their dressage test.

I had a blast. I love sharing my love for this sport!

1 comment:

Mary Rogers said...

You look so great up there! I know I've said it before (lots!) but those horses and kids are SO lucky to have you in their lives. :)