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Angela is competing at Preliminary level dressage with 11 yr old Conamara mare Amber. Biomechanics coach Denise O'Reilly trains the pair on achieving the engagement required to step up to Novice. "The first aim is to ensure there is go and whoa" says Denise. So when Amber isn't reactive enough to the leg, Angela asks the mare for a few steps of canter. Biomechanically, Denise works on three things to help Amber to step under more with the hind leg. First, Angela must lengthen her inner thigh so her heel drops, then be more connected to the back of the saddle and, finally, stronger in her core. "Now the mare is in front of the leg and you have something to work with" says Denise. (Part 2 to come.)
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