Can you imagine how mind-numbing it would be, telling your students to shorten their reins all day long? Or to relentlessly remind them to “Use the outside rein!” only to watch them haul on the inside rein. It’s not that we (students) aren’t listening, it’s just oh so difficult to change old habits.
I can’t imagine a more maddening profession.
To survive, dressage trainers seek revenge in quiet, sneaky ways — such as taking away your stirrups or having you ride with one hand behind your back. In the old days, they’d rubber-band your hands together or have you hold a short piece of string to keep you from flapping your arms. While these tried-and-true methods of torture are still in effect, there’s a new kid on the block: the Equicube.
I know quite a lot about the Equicube, having written an article about it for Flying Changes Magazine back in 2014 (See the May 2014 issue for the full report.) At the time, I thought, “What a great idea!” but didn’t have a chance to test ride the product.
That all changed when —without warning — my trainer, Natalie Perry handed me an Equicube and said, “Let’s give this a try!”
To be honest, my first thought was, “Oh, crap.” There’s a learning curve to any new product and I really hate feeling inept. (Whinney if you agree.)