Tuesday, November 13, 2012

The Ken Borden Clinic

So, over the weekend, I bit the bullet and signed up for the semi-annual Ken Borden, Jr clinic in Rhinelander, WI... a quick three hour jaunt to the south. Of course, I was feeling a little bit broke, which was the one and only reason that I hesitated for a fraction of a second to sign up. But who needs money, am I right?
Anyway, I headed on south for my two rides on Delight.
I was the last rider on Saturday, so I had plenty of time to scope out the other riders and listen to Ken's teaching style again. Even better, I had along my own personal groom/videographer so I could spend more time watching and learning and less time knocking the layers of dirt off of Delight (thanks, Donna!).

I know it's silly, but I tend to think of clinics as pesudo-horse shows, in that I do NOT want to be the lowest or worst one there. I realize we're all there to learn, but I want the clinician to be impressed with me, at least a little instead of one more training level lesson. Petty? Yes. But I recognize that about myself.

As I walked Delight around the arena, I told Ken about what we've done in the last six months and what I'd most like to work on: the lengthenings. I don't think Ken recognized Delight from the spring clinic, and after reviewing my spring clinic video I can understand why. She's really filled out!

Tired pony says "Turn off the lights!"
On day one, we worked on mostly improving the quality of the trot using our canter. Delight has a great canter, but a much less expressive trot than what the show ring is going to ask for... And those darn canter walk transitions. We've mastered the walk-canter transitions from last time, but the canter-walk remins tricky for us....
Ken critiques my shoulder in
Pony say's NO to lengthenings
Temper tantrum turns canter depart
Which gets reined back into a decent trot...
Day two we worked on the lengthenings, using a half 8 m volte with counter bend to the lengthening to the rail... As you can see, she was not a fan of the counter bend....

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