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Smooth Transitions
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Smooth Transitions

Hello “Of Horse,” audience, it is me, Baby Sweets, the best of the Pony Bloggers here to talk about a subject very dear to my training. The subject, you ask, is transitions. Transitions are about communication.

Riders keep your body in the correct position. Remember to keep your hands quiet and stay balanced in your seat and legs. Be consistent and give clear directions. Horses feel apprehension. Apprehension can make us nervous so please don’t hang on our reins. Most important, don’t forget to breathe. Breathing can be a way of letting us know what you want us to do. It’s a hint or pre-clue that you are about to change something. Exhale for downward transitions and inhale for upward transitions.

Make sure we are paying attention to you at all times. If you do not have our attention, do not attempt the transition. Trust me, it will be a wrecking ball if we are not connected to you. Be sure to let us know exactly what you expect us to do such as speeding up, slowing down, or stopping. Then allow us to do it. Ask us and we should smoothly spring or step forward to an upward transition or step down from the gait into a downward transition. When responding correctly both horse and rider are tuned into each other mentally and physically.

Practice, practice, practice. The more transitions riders do, the more responsive we become. Transitions also help to build our strength and make us physically stronger. So relax riders, take a deep breath, and do a lot of transitions. Do them in the ring, on the trails, and do them everyday. And please remember to switch it up for us. Do not follow the same routine every day. We can anticipate you very easily. Make it fun for us; I especially like having fun when working on my transitions. You may also want to play some music and do the transitions along with the music. Happy Transition Training Everyone!

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