Today I started my leg yield training. Arnie is more than capable of doing it, but he won’t do it by himself, I have to ask him to do it.

They are quite tricky to get the hang of.    It’s a lateral movement where Arnie travels both forwards and sideways and you can see him crossing his legs over in the video below.  It’s a very common move in some dressage tests and it’s also a useful move for schooling him too.   Arnie should show some slight flexion at the poll (top of his head) away from the direction he is travelling in.  As you can see here we probably have a little too much so that’s something we will need to work on.   His inside legs should cross over his outer legs which is something he’s doing quite well.  But how am I getting him to do this?

First we have a really good positive trot going.   Then I put slightly more weight on my right seat bone here and my left leg goes slightly behind my girth and up a little staying on his side to not only make him go forward but for him to get a sense that it’s pushing him over as well as not letting him fall out of the movement.  I use one rein to guide him in the direction I want him to go in and the other rein to get the right amount of flexion (a little too much in this video) and then when we reach the edge of the arena,  we straighten up again.

When you’re just starting out like me, it’s a lot to remember and to get it right it takes a lot of practice to get it right.