My ethos for The Crystal System is about giving you the tools to be your own riding coach.
Becoming ‘instructor dependent’ is a soul destroying place to be! I know – I have been there, hopelessly unable to replicate the good work that I got when having a lesson. Why? Because your instructor is not allowing you to feel your way, you are too mechanical in your aids.
What the Crystal System blog is aiming to do is to steer you to find a path through the overabundance of information that is out there; so many methods; so many viewpoints on how it should and shouldn’t be done; so many opinions.
In my research for The Crystal System I have read hundreds of books about riding and dressage (really, there are that many). What I discovered was that each and every one of them had something to offer, but that none of them had it all. It showed me that I needed to keep an open mind, listen to others and then make my own decisions about whether I wanted to do it that way or not. No rights or wrongs, just is this for me or not? (well, a few wrongs but hey, I’m trying not to be judgemental!)
My conclusion? – The Crystal System could not be another method of training – a do this, do that system; a this is right and this is wrong style, but needed to help the rider find their own way and develop their own system that works for them, by asking – what are you struggling with?; by encouraging experimentation; by suggesting good ways of doing things and giving feedback when things are not quite right. Blindly following the system that works for someone else, who has had fantastic results, will not necessarily work for you!
The Crystal System is about finding your own way to train that brings the results you want. This means accessing all sorts of resources, instructors, coaches, methods and taking from them only what you want, only what you need, only what you can use and then … making it your own!
This is why I am investing in arena mirrors from Mirrors for Training
I am a visual learner, when I explain something I have to have a picture or I say … ‘imagine this’, I start doodling and drawing to show people my point. If I am to become my own coach, if I am to be able to train my horse myself, if I am to become independent of my ‘instructor’, I need a visual feedback. I NEED mirrors.
So, here’s what to do … If you can only afford just one mirror you should invest in one, if you can afford more, get more!
I am not saying that they are essential, clearly not as I have come this far without them, but if you really want to wean yourself off that instructor, replace him with your own ability to train your horse and become your own coach, mirrors will, without doubt, aid that process.
Patricia – The Dressage Tipster