Happy New Year!

Ike and I would like to wish everyone a prosperous and healthy 2018. May your horse be sound, your equitation flawless, and your centerlines straight. 

While I now hate the word “more,” it will be our word of the year for 2018. More bend, more suppleness, more throughness, more energy, more everything except for negativity. We are leaving that behind in 2017.

Embrace the possibilities of the next 365 days!

Alison and Ike


The Newest Four Letter Word


20171127_1526091678075069.jpgHere we are at the end of 2017. Another year behind us. Before we start planning for the season to come, I find it is helpful to take a look back at our work from the past season. So, I took some time to read the judge’s comments from my Third Level tests. Yikes, they are not the comments I am accustomed to seeing. And, after some deliberation, I have declared the following word a dirty word – More.

Ugh, I am certain that I now hate it “more” than any of the other four letter words. But apparently, dressage judges love it. They must get some sort of judge’s award if they use it greater than 10 times in one test. More bend. More engagement. More collection. More thoroughness. More cadence. More extension. More, more, more. I get it, we aren’t quite where we need to be to get the higher scores, but for the love of god, please find another word to use. Perhaps this can be a topic at a judge’s forum. Sadly, Google was not as helpful as I had hoped when I searched “synonyms for more.” I came up with a few options that you can test out at the spring shows: use better half halts to increase engagement of the hind end, bend the horse around your inside leg, have horse sit and close hind leg angles, be less like a plow horse, be less like a fence board, what the *#$% was that supposed to be? Hmm, perhaps some folks would not see the humor in those last three choices…

But, I beg you, have mercy on me. We are doing our best to be more.