Robert Dover HorseMastership Week – Day 5. Blog by Kerrigan Gluch
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Jan. 8, 2015
Kerrigan Gluch, 19 years old, a participant in the fifth annual Robert Dover Horsemastership clinic at Palm Beach International Equestrian Center’s Stadium complex that is the home of the Global Dressage Festival in Wellington, Florida, is writing a daily report for dressage-news.com. Kerrigan, from Mount Pleasant, Michigan but based at Hampton Green Farm in Wellington and Fruitport, Michigan for the past four years was the 2015 United States Young Rider reserve champion on Vaquero HGF.
Friday morning I rode a different stallion, HGF Brio with Robert Dover. I was very excited to have Robert see him and where we have come in the past few months. I was so proud of Brio for going into a new atmosphere and having the feeling that he was rising to the occasion. Robert emphasized that I used a relaxed, squeezing aid with my legs, instead of a quick aid. This helped me in multiple different movements like my passage and piaffe. I also loved the work we did with his extended trot. In the end I really got the feeling of his trot keeping the same cadence without becoming too quick.
Our first lecture of the day was with Hannah Niebielsk, who is from U.S. Equestrian Federation. She talked to us about all of the youth programs that go on every year. The different types of clinics, where they take place, and how the application process works were just a few of the topics she spoke on. I felt like that was very helpful topic to speak on because a lot of the youth don’t take part in the programs simply because they don’t know what is out there. Hannah couldn’t emphasize enough that there is always something happening around the country at any point in time. Having the youth be a part of different programs improves the future of our sport.
In the afternoon we were invited to take a field trip to Oded Shimoni’s barn in Wellington. He gave us a tour of his amazing facility and we were able to watch him do some in-hand work with one of the horses. He believes that the most important aspect of work in-hand is having the ability to control the footfalls of the horse. You should be able to make them quicker or slower depending on what the horse is offering to you. Oded also said that it is very important that the horse follows your movements. If you walk faster, then the horse should come with you. If you slow up, the horse needs to sit more as if you were half halting with your body. It was very nice to get to watch the demonstration and learn the reasoning behind the way he worked the horses.
At night was the youth party held at the Kane family’s Diamante Farms. So many people came out to support Lendon Grey’s Dressage4Kids and the Emerging Dressage Athlete Program. It was nice to see a lot of the area youth come together and enjoy a night with great food and good company.
Saturday concludes the last day of the clinic with lessons all morning and a closing lecture from Lendon.