Kyra has given me the best advice in my career. "When you have a really good ride/show go someplace quiet to think about why it was good and how you got there. Typically at show if you have a good ride everyone is congratulating you and you go off to have a tea or wine. When it goes badly no one wants to talk to you and you are left alone to brood about what went wrong. Ultimately putting more thought into the bad ride than the good. If you don't know how you got to the good feeling it's not really yours, it's just circumstance."
What a insightful piece of advice. Also, typically when someone has a really good ride they want to start that next day with the feeling they ended with the day before. Instead one should think about HOW they got to that great feeling and our job is to try to shorten the amount of time it takes to get there.
Kyra and Richard are both such descriptive instructors using all sorts of imagery to explain different concepts. A lot had been discussed on the riders back and the use of the back of the upper thigh. Although I ride MANY horses at home everyday, after two days of riding in this way I was very sore. The first thing they also did was shorten my stirrups. Hmmmm. All that work stretching my leg. However, it has given me a much more solid base of support with the ability to keep my legs from sliding back. Another thought is to ride with the back of your elbows without ever actually moving your arms. This too was a mental challenge!
For myself, I have a good or perhaps bad trait when taking lessons. I am so eager to hear their advice and want to answer exactly what is being asked I become a passive rider. I need to continue to ride as I have and allow them to make tweaks or changes but not stop riding altogether. This is a learning process all around.
On the bright side the horses feel great. I have had some really excellent work in piaffe and passage with both horses. They are healthy and happy. The stable is so relaxed...it is a horsey retreat!