How to engage a horse’s hindquarters and lift the forehand

If you’re trying to improve the overall picture of your horse’s way of going, here are some great pointers from four-star eventer Kate Honey (pictured) on how to engage your horse’s hindquarters and lift the forehand…

1. Make sure your horse is straight and working off the leg.

2. Ride lots of transitions into different paces and within the paces without losing activation of your horse’s hind leg.

3. Ride your horse on a 10m circle making sure he doesn’t slow down and fall in while supporting the outside.

4. You can start introducing lateral work such as shoulder in, travers and renvers to help engage your horse’s hind legs.

5. Finally, you could use some raised poles — they help activate the hind leg and keep the horse’s interest.

Now you’ve got that advice in mind, take a look at these dressage competitions available to enter where you can put this into practice…

Winter dressage series

Date: 3 February
Venue: Leamside Equestrian, Houghton Le Spring
Details: “This competition has a large range of unaffiliated classes from intro to medium.”
Enter now

Midweek morning dressage

Date: 6 February
Venue: Tumpy Green Equestrian Centre, Cam
Details: “This relaxed competition has classes from unaffiliated intro to elementary. This competition will not start before 10am and all tests can be called. These classes count as Trailblazers qualifiers.”
Enter now

British Dressage

Date: 9 February
Venue: Cobham Manor Equestrian Centre, Maidstone
Details: “This competition has classes from prelim to pick your own FEI test, plus freestyle to music classes too.”
Enter now

Affiliated and unaffiliated dressage

Date: 9 February
Venue: Muirmill Equestrian Centre, Kilmarnock
Details: “This competition has unaffiliated and affiliated classes ranging between intro to medium, with summer qualifiers.”
Enter now

Unaffiliated dressage

Date: 9 February
Venue: Milton Equestrian Centre, Worksop
Details: “This unaffiliated competition features classes from intro to pick your own novice. There are rosettes to sixth place and senior and junior sections too.”
Enter now

British Dressage

Date: 10 February
Venue: Moulton College Equestrian Centre, Moulton
Details: “Affiliated classes ranging between prelim and advanced medium with a selection of qualifiers too.”
Enter now

Visit equo.co.uk for full competition and training listings