Leg Yield In, Half Pass Back.
This exercise is quite difficult, but the benefits are huge! If done correctly it becomes like a dance, in from the track to the quarter-line in Leg Yield and back from the quarter-line to the track in Half Pass. Your horse maintains the same relative bend, however, he changes the legs that cross over in front, first moving away from the left leg, then the right leg, etc.
Track right from A into the corner by K and change your posting diagonal and the bend to the left, Leg Yield (right) in a couple strides and then Half Pass (left) back to the track, try to arrive just before E and straighten for a stride or two and then repeat from E to H, go large and repeat down the other long-side. Try and ride this pair of “in and backs” closer to the quarter-line, further in from the track, before returning to the track.
Change rein “into the corner”, that is from A ride a half Volte left toward K and then back to A. Now tracking left on the long-side ride a mirror of the “in and back” from F Leg Yielding (left) in and Half Pass (right) back to the track just before B, straighten and repeat between B and M. Now, go large and ride one more pair of “in and out” down the next long-side between H and E and E and K. Again try and ride the “in” further from the track with the goal of reaching the quarter-line before returning back to the track.
By now you should have your horse in a good working trot, bending easily left and right with the haunches engaged.
As always, if you feel your horse losing the desire to go forward or straight at any point in the above exercises, do not hesitate to trot some straight lines.
Now that we have warmed up our horse laterally at the trot, you are ready for the next exercise in my warm up, Trot to Canter over Poles which will introduce longitudinal stretching at the working trot.