Coiling power – learning to really half-halt
September 24, 2012 2 Comments
My half-halts are really quarter-halts. I can use the half-halt to rebalance the horse, a bit, but my half-halts don’t add power. So Christy has put us to work, retraining both of us to ride (and respond to) half halts properly, which means focusing on generating, and then retaining and channeling, power.
The half-halts are instrumental in improving gait quality, because when done correctly, they engage the horse’s hind legs. This is something I need to improve, so Christy set me to work on transitions, with the intention of developing my half halt.
We started out looking like this: pleasant, but not engaged.
Doing transitions on a circle helped me get and maintain bend, while also starting to get a real feel for maintaining power through transitions. Things started to improve.
After quite a bit of work, we finally got the half-halt working the way Christy envisioned, producing our best work of the day, with Derby nicely connected over his back, off his forehand and moving with energy:
There’s a lot more work on this to do, but at least I’m starting to get a feel for a real half-halt, not the energy-draining downshift I had been using.