|PURPOSE: To confirm that the horse demonstrates correct basics, is supple and moves freely forward in a clear rhythm with a steady tempo, accepting contact with the bit. All trot work may be ridden sitting or rising, unless stated. Halts may be through the walk.||RIDER #||6716|
USDF TRAINING LEVEL TEST 3
|Enter working trot |
Proceed working trot
|Regularity and quality of trot; willing, calm transitions; straightness; attentiveness; immobility (min. 3 seconds)||7.5||7.5||Good entry and halt. Move off should be straighter.|
|Track left |
|Regularity and quality of trot; straightness; bend and balance in turns||7||7||Straight, but, unsteady in bridle.|
Serpentine 3 equal loops width of the arena
|Regularity and quality of trot; supple changes of bend on centerline; geometry; balance||7.5||2||15||Good changes of bend. Slightly against hand at times.|
|4||Between C & M||Working canter right lead||Willing, calm transition; regularity and quality of gaits; bend and balance in corner; straightness||7||7||Off bit briefly in depart.|
|5||B||Circle right 20m||Regularity and quality of canter; shape and size of circle; bend; balance||7||7||A bit stiff in poll Strides could cover more ground.|
|6||A||Working trot||Willing, calm transition; regularity and quality of trot; bend and balance in corner||7.5||2||15|
|7||Before K |
|Willing, calm transition; regularity and quality of walk||7||2||14||Clear rhythm. Walk could be more forward.|
|Change rein, free walk|
|Regularity and quality of walks; reach and ground cover of free walk allowing complete freedom to stretch the neck forward and downward; straightness; willing, calm transitions; bend and balance in corner||7||2||14||Could show more consistent stretch and more swing through back.|
|9||C||Working trot||Willing, calm transition; regularity and quality of trot; bend and balance in corner; straightness||6.5||6.5||Avoids contact. Hollow back.|
Serpentine 3 equal loops width of the arena
|Regularity and quality of trot; supple changes of bend on centerline; geometry; balance||6||2||12||Hollows back and avoids contact for most of the movement. Loses clear bend.|
|11||Between A-F||Working canter left lead||Willing, calm transition; regularity and quality of gaits; bend and balance in corner; straightness||6.5||6.5||Braced in depart.|
|12||B||Circle left 20m||Regularity and quality of canter; shape and size of circle; bend; balance||6||6||Canter needs more forward jump. Lost gait after circle.|
|13||C||Working trot||Willing, calm transition; regularity and quality of trot; bend and balance in corner; straightness||5.5||2||11||Early transition. Not from aids.|
Circle left 20m in rising trot, allowing horse to stretch forward and downward, while maintaining contact
Shorten the reins
|Forward and downward stretch over the back into a light contact, maintaining balance and quality of trot; bend; shape and size of circle; willing, calm transitions||7||2||14||Some nice stretch. Maintain more forward energy.|
|Down centerline |
|Bend and balance in turn; regularity and quality of trot; willing, calm transition; straightness; attentiveness; immobility (min. 3 seconds)||7.5||7.5||Almost straight. Needs more balance behind.|
Leave arena in free walk. Exit at A.
|1||Gaits||Freedom and regularity||7||7||Canter and walk could show more freedom|
|2||Impulsion||Desire to move forward with suppleness of the back and steady tempo.||6.5||2||13||Suppleness should be more consistent.|
|3||Submission||Acceptance of steady contact, attention, and confidence.||6.5||2||13||Avoids connection.|
|4||Rider’s Position and Seat||Keeping in balance with the horse||7||7||Fairly well balanced. Leg/heel could be more under hip.|
|5||Rider’s Correct and Effective Use of the Aids||Correct bend and preparation of transitions||6.5||6.5||Leg needs more effect in sending horse into a lighter and more elastic "feel" of reins/bit, which encouraged more forward and downward stretch into connection.|
|Further Remarks: PLEASE NOTE >> coaching during a test is not permitted in our mid-month hosted shows where you compete against others OR if you are signed up for year end points, it woud not count. Since this is our end of the month "compete against yourself" format, we allowed it. Just wanted to let you know for future reference! - BDS team|
|Hi Points: Calm and careful demeanor. Test started out quite smoothly. The pair works well together and should be able to score higher.
Lo Points: At times, the horse and rider lost connection/contact as the horse becomes hollow through back in some movements. The canter could develop more "jump" or ground cover.
Overall Impression: I felt that you were trying for the perfect ride. At this level, it's rarely perfect and you need to analyze and improve as you go. The horse needs to work with a more consistently rounded topline--reaching into a soft connection. Surprisingly, the reins have little to do with this, but, your leg aids create that possibility.
Exercises: Ride with a very soft following seat--rising or sitting. Your seat, if it's too demanding, will raise the horses neck and poll, rather than encourage it to stretch down and round. Be sure your knees are not gripping to much--that will restrict forward freedom. You should always be able to feel the sole of your boot. If not, check to see if relaxing your knees will help. Take your knees off the saddle one at a time--it's pretty hard to grip with one knee. That will also help you keep your heel relaxed and down. If the horse "disappeared" underneath you, you should feel balanced enough to be standing without falling forward or backward.
Softly, give one rein for a few strides, and then the other, always softly taking back. Then give with both hands for a few strides and softly return to connection. The feel in your hand should be more elastic. This gives the horse confidence that you will not pull hard, and teaches it to self carry itself. A light seat, light quick leg, and giving hand will give the horse more opportunity to improve its freedom and swing through back. When this is mastered at the walk and trot, try it at the canter. Giving both reins at the canter will teach you how much your core needs to support the horse without increasing rein pressure.
To time transitions and departs, try "box breathing". Without the horse, inhale for 3-4 seconds, hold your breath for 3-4 seconds, exhale for 3-4 seconds, and wait 3-4 seconds before the next inhale. Repeat.
So, for a down transition from canter to trot, inhale, hold, and allow the transition on your exhale. Remember to keep your aids light. Overriding aids confuse the horse. Same for the canter depart, inhale, set your aids for the depart while you hold, and allow the depart on the exhale. Our aids do not make a horse do anything. They allow the horse to perform.
Good luck with this nice horse!