The goal of this exercise is to vary the number of strides between two cavalettis. The ideal is to have a balanced canter in the entry zone, so it’s important to adjust the canter from afar to attain the contracted number of strides determined beforehand.
You can start with a contract of 8 strides, and then increase the amplitude for 7 strides, then 6...
The horse The regularity of the paces - necessarily learned while training on the flat - must be maintained when riding over poles on the ground. The same applies for the possible variations of the canter: lengthening and shortening the stride.
The rider During this exercise, the rider must concentrate on the quality of the canter when approaching from a distance, throughout the exercise and also when landing after the last fence. One may or may not allow the horse to change legs; what is most important is to remain straight and jump the poles or fences in the middle. In doing this, be as precise as when riding a dressage test.
There is no change in the height of the fences. One is above all looking for improvement in the quality of the canter and in controlling the cadence. It is instead possible to vary the number of strides between the fences or poles on the ground to verify the rider’s ability to control his horse’s speed – such as riding over the first pole at 10 km/h and the second at 20 km/h maintaining a constant speed while approaching. In the same frame of mind, repeat the exercise doing the opposite: riding over the first pole at 20 km/h and the second at 10 km/h.
Solving a few problems : If the strides are irregular: you can improve matters using poles on the ground to mark each stride between the first and the last poles. If corners are cut while approaching the line, place 2 skittles or poles at the take-off and landing points forming a corridor (10 metres before and 10 metres after the line) and make yourself approach and canter on after the exercise in a straight line.
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