So, I had to watch these about ten times or so before I could make a decision about whether to post them. Ultimately, I decided to share. This blog is meant to be a training tool and a log of our progress, and these videos accurately show where we're at right now, so they belong on here. And you all have been so supportive and encouraging following along on this journey with me, I feel like you won't beat me up too much. I really do appreciate you guys taking the time to leave me such kind and thoughtful comments, by the way.
Some things looked better than they felt (which is great) and some parts felt better than they looked (which is... good to know). The first time I watched these, I found myself leaning back in my chair, willing myself to sit up more. I did a lot of cringing (sometimes just at the sight of myself in white breeches. I can't believe I have to be seen in public in those things). I yelled at myself to shorten my reins FERCHRISSAKES. And I'm a little disappointed that the halts aren't quite "square," except for the very last one. I also really wish Tucker didn't feel the need to look the judge in the eye while I'm saluting.
But after a few more views, I started to be a little less harsh on myself. Our tempo is pretty consistent throughout. He slows down a little in the first steps of each leg yield in First-2, but I get the rhythm back each time. His walks are so much better. The right lead canter transitions are really off-balance at the moment, but I know how to fix that, and the right lead canter itself is actually lovely. Tucker still does some head-bobbing here and there, but there are times where he's pretty steady in the contact as well. I am still doing wonky things with my left hand, but once I compared it to some older videos, my hands are actually vastly improved.
So now that you see what I mean about me riding like a hunter rider in dressage tack... despite my initial despair, I actually think it's quite fixable. I did a study last night on how dressage riders post to the trot, and in my next post I'm going to try to break down my posting vs. the rising trot videos I found online from some grand prix warm-up rings. I'm actually not that far off (on the posting part, not on the GP part, in case that even needed clarification).