- Learn And Practice Your Test
Even if you have a caller on the day, learn the test beforehand, practice riding individual parts of the test and ride the whole test a couple of times. Don't practice riding the whole test too many times or your horse may anticipate movements on the day. On a windy day and/or with a lot of background noise you don't want to be left wondering where to go if you can't hear your caller - think of the caller as a back up against forgetting the test on the day, but don't be totally reliant on them.
Take a few deep breaths and relax your body before entering the arena. A tense rider will make a tense horse. Remember Dressage training in West Sussex can be fun.
- Look Up
Look up and ahead of you so you can plan and prepare for your transitions and turns - it also helps with your posture and position. If you need to look down then do so with your eyes but not your head.
- Ride Forward On Straight Lines
Look for great Dressage horse in West Sussex and ensure your horse is going actively forward in an even rhythm (but not rushing) on the straight lines as a horse that is lacking impulsion as you ride down the centre line or across the school is more likely to drift from side to side.
- Prepare For Transitions
Half halt before each upward and downward transition to prepare your horse for the transition and help to keep it balanced through the transition.
- Give Yourself More Time When Riding Transitions Between Markers
Ask for the transition 2-3 strides after your horse has passed the first marker so the judge can see that you are clearly past the first marker whilst you allow your horse the maximum amount of time to respond to your aids for the transition before reaching the second marker. If you ask for the transition half way between the markers or as you approach the second marker you give your horse less time to respond to your aids and run the risk of performing the transition too late if your horse is slow to respond.
- Prepare For Turns
Half halt before each turn across the arena to prepare your horse for the turn and keep the inside leg close and pushing into the outside rein contact as you turn to prevent the horse falling in and help it balance through the turn. Look ahead of you around your turn.
- Ride Good Circles
Picture the circle drawn on the arena surface and ride along its imaginary line and look 1/4 to 1/2 circle ahead as you ride to ensure you ride a good even circle.