1- Walk your horse for a full 10 minutes on a loose rein, time yourself, seriously. This can be in the ring or around the yard.
2- With light contact warm up your horse in a trot and canter, riding circles, figure eights and serpentines. Simple changes.
3- Shorten your reins for full contact and today's exercise will be shoulder in. Tonight watch this video, even if you are versed in shoulder in. Matt explains three tracks as the face on one, the forelegs on another and the hinds on another, different than the shoulder-fore that we use most. This is to be worked toward not achieved at once. However, we need to trick are brains into responding most the time. So visualize the three tracks as you ride as he describes to help you achieve better results. Also, notice how forward his trot is, think about that as well. We teach shoulder in and then use it almost daily to obtain suppleness, better balance and straightness. It is a good reminder to the rider of the outside rein. Practice shoulder in on the long sides or across the diagonal as Matt does. Once you feel like there is a bit of improvement, try the next exercise.
4- Shoulder in halfway down the long side starting in the corner, do not wait until you come out of the corner. Keep the horse in even contact (rein and legs) as you work, at E or B turn across the middle, crossing over X. The key to succeeding in this turn is the even contact, otherwise they will fall out of balance. As you approach the other wall start to think about turning to the new direction, start to prepare the shoulder in through the turn, again even contact. Finish the new side in the new shoulder in. Proceed across the diagonal straight and forward and then start again. Practice until you feel improvement and then repeat again a time or two to be sure it is still there and then you can finish. Often riders stop as soon as they feel something good to have a little party or what not and they missed an opportunity to really teach the horse and to build the horse.
5- You can also work the canter with a slight shoulder in (shoulder fore). Keep is simple on a circle or only down the long side. You need to keep the proper shape of the canter or the horse will swap.
6- Finish your horse with a three minute long trot, time yourself. You want the horse to stretch into the bit. He will still need light contact with this longer rein and most importantly a working hind end.
7- Enjoy a nice walk around the yard, get him out of the ring.