A Small Foray into Flying Changes

A Small Foray into Flying Changes


I haven’t really been riding the past few days, but before I started my small break that was my general attitude, LOL. At some point I got so annoyed that I decided to see what happens when I pick up the left lead and then just switch directions. The result? Half of a flying change!

The next day, after consulting with some of my knowledgeable Instagram followers, I came out with a loose plan. I picked up a big, forward canter, aimed him towards a wall, and then, right when we were a couple strides away from smashing into it, I did a dramatic change of direction using my outside aids while shifting my weight extra hard. A couple of tries later and BAM! A full flying change!

Riding my first ever flying change made me think about where flying lead changes fit into training in general. In dressage flying changes are a third level movement, and for performance horses flying changes are one of the most advanced stages of their training. Strange that jumpers learn their flying changes so much earlier in their training than horses in other disciplines.

We probably won’t make these a consistent part of our training for a while, but I’m hoping to use some of the things I learned while dabbling in them to help me out whenever Raglan crossfires on the right lead.

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