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TrakGeorge
Aug. 13, 2007, 01:00 PM
I think maybe you guys can help me the best. I'm a h/j, but I do believe in teaching my horses to become balanced and light - which I think has helped them so much. Lately I've been looking at a lot of pictures of horses supposely "round," "on the bit" and "going forward" but to me most of them look like the are on the forehand and the riders have just forced the horses head down, then again riders who have got the horses head down, but the horse isn't engaged. But then when I look at others the horse seems to be going forward & balanced, but the head is up (I have a few of these I believe on my greenie who is still getting the hang of it)

When looking at a picture, what do you look for in a properly round and balanced horse? and even some who are learning the basics and inbetweens. If anyone has some pics that show do's and don'ts that would be great!

Thanks so much

Moll
Aug. 13, 2007, 02:06 PM
A balanced trot is uphill, not on the forehand. Imagine the rider would let the horse take off completely free from the confinement of the aids but keeping the same balance - which way would the horse go? Upwards, straight forwards - or plow into the ground?

Some fairly balanced trots to me:

http://www.gestuet-haemelschenburg.de/bilder/exe27.jpg
http://www.gestuet-haemelschenburg.de/bilder/showm17.jpg
http://www.gestuet-haemelschenburg.de/bilder/falke5.jpg


..ending up in a balanced piaffe (different horses, same website though):
http://www.gestuet-haemelschenburg.de/bilder/ikost14.jpg

To be balanced, the horse needs to be round - not to be confused with being put on the bit, or into a frame, or a headset. Round means the energy created by the hindquarters will be used to raise the withers and push the ears forwards without the horse ever coming behind the vertical, which would require tension. Look at the withers - not the loin area behind the saddle. Incorrect training will push the loin area upwards, stiffening the back, while the horse hollows and keeps the withers down and croup up. If you try to raise the neck of a hollow horse, you will push his withers further down and make collection impossible.

Eclectic Horseman
Aug. 13, 2007, 02:42 PM
In total agreement with Moll.

I've always liked the Hanoverian stallion Wonderful's trot in his video when he was 5 years old at the state stud.

http://www.1derful.com/home.html

Lots of nice video on that site actually.

In addition to the withers and the croup, I like to look at the hocks. Where are they in relation to the horse when they are in the bent phase of the stride. Reaching under the horse's belly or out behind? Also look at the hind hoof. Is it knuckled over with the toe pointing at the ground (or worse, dragged along the ground) or is the toe pointing forward with the flat of the foot parallel to the ground.

Of course, a horse with poor conformation for dressage will not have that sort of articulation in his joints or the sort of roundness that these well conformed horses will. If a horse is croup high, it will be difficult for him to travel uphill without appearing to hollow his back a bit unless he has an uncharacteristic ability to really sit on his haunches. So for many horses, trots like these are not realistically attainable.

I wonder if anyone can come up with some more ordinary pix of some not so fabulous horses showing a balanced trot?

STF
Aug. 13, 2007, 02:57 PM
Some Not so famous-

Got a 8 on this med and comments "Very balanced" http://www.spindletopfarm.net/showtrot.JPG


Working on uphill balance -
http://www.spindletopfarm.net/Dream2.jpg


Balanced young horse -
http://www.spindletopfarm.net/fillisaddle1.jpg


Nice balance of my Big Man -
http://www.spindletopfarm.net/Ptrot.jpg

Moll
Aug. 13, 2007, 04:28 PM
Some Not so famous-

Got a 8 on this med and comments "Very balanced" http://www.spindletopfarm.net/showtrot.JPG

No, no no no. The horse is hanging on the reins, on the forehand, very stiff. :no:

STF
Aug. 13, 2007, 04:39 PM
Judges did not think so (was rated judge BTW)

Are any of the others in your agreement? :lol:

Gucci Cowgirl
Aug. 13, 2007, 05:13 PM
try these

purplnurpl
Aug. 13, 2007, 05:17 PM
I agree with Moll. It looks like a good example of what I call 'stingy' movement.
and it doesn't look like a medium at all. interesting. pictures can be deceiving.

The first chestnut pictured above is purdy! He loses a lot of his power out his hind end though. All that energy that is kicked out behind will one day be brought under for some nice lengthens.

I agree it's nice to see some Non Pro pics. those of us little people who manage to get it right sometimes.
here's a nice working trot. scored an 8. wish it were a side view though. can't complain about the range of motion in his stifle! you can imagine what his mediums look like.

not too bad for a sucky TB.
http://i128.photobucket.com/albums/p189/xckaboom/Dressage.jpg

shaft0463
Aug. 13, 2007, 05:19 PM
No, no no no. The horse is hanging on the reins, on the forehand, very stiff. :no:

i would have to agree with that, though i think the rider is contributing to the stiffness by sitting too much on her seat bones and rounding her shoulders instead of sitting up straight and tall with the shoulders back. a horse cannot be light, uphill, and forward when the rider is crunched over like that. the rider must carry her upper body on her own so that it does not weigh the horse down.

TropicalStorm
Aug. 13, 2007, 05:23 PM
Just purely because I want to be educated, I can see that the horse is a bit of the forehand, but where do you see the stiffness? Like what would you be looking at?

ybiaw
Aug. 13, 2007, 05:23 PM
I am also a hunter rider...and to the OP - I think that, differences in head carriage between hunters and dressage horses aside, this is a lovely picture of a hunter in a balanced, round, forward trot.

http://www.hassingerfarms.com/ups%20trot.jpg

shaft0463
Aug. 13, 2007, 05:41 PM
Just purely because I want to be educated, I can see that the horse is a bit of the forehand, but where do you see the stiffness? Like what would you be looking at?

i see stiffness in the hind legs, the back, the neck, and jaw. starting with the hind legs, the horse doesnt look to be using his hind legs to his ability. he is dragging them a bit, not really pushing off with them. in the back, i notice right behind the saddle that the back curves down from the hind end. he is not rounding and lifting his back, which is why the hinds look a bit strung out to me. in the neck, the poll is not the highest point. the horse is breaking at the 3rd verterbae. he is also behind the verticle. the mouth is open, which implies tension in the jaw.

when i look at the whole picture, i dont see a horse that is light and moving forward. i see a horse that appears a bit bogged down. i dont think the horse is unable to be light and correct, but the posture of the rider is making it impossible for him. she has a tight hold on his face (notice the tension in the reins) and is not sitting up and carring her upper body. having the upper body slouch like that is difficult for the horse.

TropicalStorm
Aug. 13, 2007, 05:56 PM
Thank you :) I could see the tension in the jaw, but having someone point out the stiffness in the hind really helps! Because I probably never would have noticed it on my own :no: :cool:

STF
Aug. 13, 2007, 06:23 PM
I guess juding once pic in time is not easy, since he scored well on the movement. Owell.

Moll
Aug. 13, 2007, 06:31 PM
No, it's just a moment in time. That moment from where the trot picture was taken, almost everything was lacking but could be that ten seconds later there was dramatic improvement.

Judges have different levels of skill, too, but, lacking a videotape of the trot in question, nobody can say what happened.

I just meant that that particular picture was NOT a good example of a balanced trot. I looked at your website and you have many better pictures on it so it was a strange picture to choose!

STF
Aug. 13, 2007, 06:38 PM
Its ok. I do see what your see as well. He looks to be pulling down on my hands. He was huge and moved like a big huge draft type (He was full Holstiner). Im 6ft tall and he made me look normal!! LOL
He was a clunk to ride, but I loved him!

srg
Aug. 13, 2007, 06:43 PM
This is a picture (taken by Astrid Appels of Eurodressage) of JJ Tate riding the 6 YO, Donnermuth, at the World Breeding Championships for Young Dressage Horses in Verden Germany several days ago. I'm not sure how much more balanced in the trot a 6 year old could be. :D

http://www.eurodressage.com/images/2007/07wcyh/donnermuth_0580.jpg


This is me riding my mare when she was 4, two weeks after being weaned from her foal. One moment in time from a Training Level test where we scored in the mid 70s.

http://www.goodnessridge.com/images/baronessatrottent.jpg


And the same mare at age 8 in the first step of half pass now 4th Level (schooled by JJ at home)

http://www.goodnessridge.com/images/nesstrot%20(2).jpg

STF
Aug. 13, 2007, 06:48 PM
Very pretty horse!!!
Can I ask what type of footing that is in the last pic??

srg
Aug. 13, 2007, 06:56 PM
Actually there are two different black horses in the 3 pictures. Picture #1 is of a 6 YO black gelding who just competed at the WBCYH in Verden. He and JJ were the highest scoring/placing U.S. horse and rider.

Pictures #2 & #3 are my riding mare at age 4 and age 8. In picture #3 taken in my outdoor arena at home the footing is C-33 sand known as "concrete" sand. It's awesome, inexpensive footing that has the fines washed out of it leaving a very coarse, easily compacted sand behind. There are teeny-tiny pebbles in this sand. When wet it is very firm and even when dry does not roll under the horse's feet.

trailhorse1
Aug. 13, 2007, 07:01 PM
Man, I must have been taught totally wrong on how to ride. every single picture to me was absolutely horrid. Not that I am a pro, but..............Lets forget about looking at the horses, I am looking at the riders. If the rider is bad then how can u judge how the horse is going? I seen riders who were stiff in the forearms, shoulders hunched over, not looking where the rider was going. That in it self causes horses to fall in on the shoulder. Not one rider had any strong core riding. The one guy riding looks like he is in a lazy boy recliner. What about the hands? Every one had absoluteley no connection with their horse and all of them had their thumbs to each other not facing up. To me there was not one good example here but like I said I think I was taught wrong? Honestly, re-study the pics.

TrakGeorge
Aug. 13, 2007, 07:02 PM
Thanks everyone for the fast replies!! I LOVE everyone's pics....PLEASE KEEP THEM COMING....I love leanring!! specially when its about horses. ....I think I see what you guys are talking about...

I also see that the horse body is parallel to the ground, with both feet in the air about equal distance in the air (except when the front is even more so off the ground) Is this also correct?

do any of you have any that show INCORRECT (but someone could THINK correct) carriage?

Gucci Cowgirl
Aug. 13, 2007, 07:14 PM
Man, I must have been taught totally wrong on how to ride. every single picture to me was absolutely horrid. Not that I am a pro, but..............Lets forget about looking at the horses, I am looking at the riders. If the rider is bad then how can u judge how the horse is going? I seen riders who were stiff in the forearms, shoulders hunched over, not looking where the rider was going. That in it self causes horses to fall in on the shoulder. Not one rider had any strong core riding. The one guy riding looks like he is in a lazy boy recliner. What about the hands? Every one had absoluteley no connection with their horse and all of them had their thumbs to each other not facing up. To me there was not one good example here but like I said I think I was taught wrong? Honestly, re-study the pics.

You must have been trained wrong - I think JJ Tate has an excellent position and use of her core...plus those riders in the german photos that Moll posted can ride circles around a lot of the olympic team members, so I don't know where you are coming from.

Those professional european stallion riders and auction riders are so strong in their core they can sit on anything effectively.

class
Aug. 13, 2007, 07:35 PM
Man, I must have been taught totally wrong on how to ride. every single picture to me was absolutely horrid. Not that I am a pro, but..............Lets forget about looking at the horses, I am looking at the riders. If the rider is bad then how can u judge how the horse is going? I seen riders who were stiff in the forearms, shoulders hunched over, not looking where the rider was going. That in it self causes horses to fall in on the shoulder. Not one rider had any strong core riding. The one guy riding looks like he is in a lazy boy recliner. What about the hands? Every one had absoluteley no connection with their horse and all of them had their thumbs to each other not facing up. To me there was not one good example here but like I said I think I was taught wrong? Honestly, re-study the pics.

well don't be shy! post your pictures!

EventerAJ
Aug. 13, 2007, 07:41 PM
I'm sure trailhorse1 will rip me apart on this one :rolleyes: but I think my horse looks okay. At least, not bad for a QH...
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v103/aljohnd/Horse%20Pics/CRdrsg02.jpg

What do I like about this pic? He is "up", open in his shoulder, swinging through from behind, looking relaxed and confident. Is he going to win GP? Um, no. But for the level (prelim eventing, roughly 1st L dressage), I think it's pretty good.

What do I not like about this pic? ME! Ick, I have this horrible roach in my back, my heel is coming up, and my hands have rotated flat. The only thing going right is a light, soft contact (I've just softened a half-halt and pushed him forward). Ugggh, from the video, I promise you I didn't sit like a sack of potatoes for the whole ride! :winkgrin:



Remember, a photo is only a moment in time. The rider's position is never static, but always moving and changing with the horse's motion. IRL, we're judged on the total performance-- balance, straightness, quality of the entire movement. It's difficult to capture the appropriate representation all of this in a brief snapshot.

LarkspurCO
Aug. 13, 2007, 07:41 PM
Nice balance of my Big Man -
http://www.spindletopfarm.net/Ptrot.jpg

What a gorgeous man you have there. In addition to the balanced stride I see a nice heel-first landing. Beautiful.

When working a young horse correctly in a long, stretched frame, he will still be balanced even though he is technically still on the forehand. To me, balance is more about moving with rhythm and relaxation, not so much about degree of collection.

tpup
Aug. 13, 2007, 07:53 PM
Please take this with a grain of salt. I am new and still learning....but is it correct that many of these riders (including the champion lady) seem to be leaning BACK? vs. sitting up straight? Many look like they are actually pulling back and leaning back. I'm not seeing good, straight posture. Or is this the correct position? Don't flame me! I am just asking and trying to learn :)

Gucci Cowgirl
Aug. 13, 2007, 08:02 PM
leaning behind the vertical is not correct, however there are times where you may see it for a stride or so that is forgivable...

if the rider is really strongly half-halting, he/she may come behind the verticle for a split second, but as long as the hands do not come back as well, and pull backwards on the mouth, it is pretty forgivable...

but if the hands and contact are pulled back with the body, it just shuts down the hindlegs and creates tension and stiffness everywhere.

that is why a rider's hands have to be independent from their seat and body...

Dalfan
Aug. 13, 2007, 08:07 PM
Or is this the correct position?

Leaning back or going behind the verticle is not something you want to do all the time. Some use it as a driving seat. Sometimes it just happens momentarily, but usually you want to be on the verticle or slightly, slightly, slightly ifv.

rebecca yount
Aug. 13, 2007, 09:20 PM
Here's my 4 yo Oldenburg mare:

Soldier06
Aug. 13, 2007, 09:24 PM
Here are some decently balanced pictures of my children's hunter. He is still very green on the whole roundness/but stay forward concept (loves to go BTV) while not being strung out... ;) Keep in mind that the field is rather uneven as well (part of the reason I school in it- he has to pay attention!:lol:) Some are more balanced than others...:) Oh and I know...I get ahead big time!!!!!!!

http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b22/Picapony/P1030607.jpg
http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b22/Picapony/P1030605.jpg
http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b22/Picapony/P1030588.jpg
http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b22/Picapony/P1030587.jpg
http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b22/Picapony/P1030517.jpg
http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b22/Picapony/P1030497.jpg
http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b22/Picapony/P1030475.jpg
http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b22/Picapony/P1030469.jpg

Here are some more:
http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b22/Picapony/tia.jpg
http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b22/Picapony/scan0005.jpg
http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b22/Picapony/scan0004.jpg
The chestnut is now competing PSG, was competing 4th in the pics. and the bay was a super star hunter I rode. :)

shaft0463
Aug. 13, 2007, 09:25 PM
i kinda see leaning back as a "trend", almost as a way to hold some of these big horses together without riding them correctly with the hind end coming up underneath the horse. it is usually successful in getting the head down into a "frame", but it doesnt allow the back to lift and the hind end to really push. it seems like people get away on it with a horse that is naturally uphill and a good mover, but a horse who needs the rider to be balanced will end up on the forehand, but by golly he will have that head down!

sitting up tall and straight is correct because it allows the rider to sit on his triangle, not just the seat bones. the rider's upper body weight is balanced over the hips, on the strongest part of the horse's back. the seat is thus lighter, allowing the back to lift and the hind end to come under and push. in this position, the rider can drive the horse with the front pelvic bone instead of the seat bones. along the same lines, the rider can also deliver a half-halt through the front of the seat instead of the seat bones; this allows the horse to continue lifting his back through the half-halt instead of the improper way, which weights the seat bones and drives them into the horse's back and causes him to hollow the back and thus trail the hind end.

does that make sense?

shaft0463
Aug. 13, 2007, 09:32 PM
Here's my 4 yo Oldenburg mare:

for a comparison, look at the second picture here. the first is kinda crooked, so its a bit harder to see.

see how the mare's back is lifted? also look at the hind leg that is just leaving the ground. see how it's almost off the ground, but the cannon bone is still almost perpendicular to the ground? this horse's hind end is up under her, allowing her to use it to push her body forward and lighten the shoulders. she is young and probably doesnt have the strength to really lighten the shoulders much yet, but she IS pushing off with the hind end up under her and lifting her back.

cheekyhorse
Aug. 13, 2007, 09:35 PM
here is a pic of my coming 4 year old stallion. He has been under saddle now 4 months, and has a very balanced trot.

http://i209.photobucket.com/albums/bb291/cheekyhorse/trotpax.jpg

http://i209.photobucket.com/albums/bb291/cheekyhorse/paxtrots.jpg

MagicRoseFarm
Aug. 13, 2007, 09:40 PM
here is another...

STF
Aug. 13, 2007, 09:40 PM
Terri, I really like Pacific! He has a super nice active hind and a loose front for such a young horse.

cheekyhorse
Aug. 13, 2007, 09:42 PM
thank you very much!;) We love him!

Pony Fixer
Aug. 13, 2007, 10:00 PM
Gaw, LaNet, I lurve your stallion.

STF
Aug. 13, 2007, 10:21 PM
Thank you!
*blush*
He is very special to me.

Terri, is there a video of Pacfic online anywhere??

saxony
Aug. 13, 2007, 10:36 PM
I think this is a pretty balanced trot:

http://good-times.webshots.com/photo/2791603410099096886pUpxbx?vhost=good-times

Sancudo
Aug. 13, 2007, 11:18 PM
I'll give it a go.

I apologize for the unclear quality- I couldn't get the scan to work right, so it's a pic of a pic.

http://s20.photobucket.com/albums/b249/DaylightComes/?action=view&current=Riley2007.jpg

I practice without stirrups, and my elbows do weird things, lol.

So just look at him. :)

TrakGeorge
Aug. 13, 2007, 11:33 PM
Solider06 -

Your mare looks pretty, but the majority of your pictures are exactly what I see and am talking about....

I see that you are trying to get her to go round, but she doesn't seem to be coming forward from behind and seems a bit on the forehand. Her head looks like it is trying to go long and low... but to me she isn't correctly balanced.

Can someone with a better eye tell me if this is right or wrong? and if I am wrong, why?? As I said I am trying to learn, not trying to be mean.

Dutch
Aug. 14, 2007, 12:12 AM
What I consider to be a balanced and forward trot is linked below. This gelding was 4 years old in this picture and received 8's for balance and suppleness from the Dutch keuring judge. Contact is light and rider's position is very good as well.

http://s94.photobucket.com/albums/l98/mhaley1010/weblinks/?action=view&current=Tangotrot6DG.jpg

cheekyhorse
Aug. 14, 2007, 02:01 AM
STF, yes there is a video of him on youtube. It's not the best quality as it's home video and I was really gunning it forward with the trot, so he gets almost running a bit, but you'd get an idea of how he moves.

cheekyhorse
Aug. 14, 2007, 02:04 AM
Saxony: is that your horse in those pics? He is lovely! Looks VERY much like a dutch gelding I had up until last year. Very very similar.

Hazelnut
Aug. 14, 2007, 06:42 AM
here is another...
very cute horse!

AmericaRunsOnDunkin
Aug. 14, 2007, 07:49 AM
I went to a Dr. Cesar Parra clinic and he had simple drawings of horses w/o riders that were balanced, round, and "on the bit" for each level of dressage. It was extremely enlightening. I wish I had copies of those pics to show you! Essentially and very simply put, the neck angle and degree of compression with the body changes as the horse muscles up. Ugh! If only I had those pics! In my mind, there is no one "right" frame, but rather a series of "frames", all correctly balanced, round, and a nice acceptance of the bit, according to where your horse is in conditioning, muscle development, etc.

Wayside
Aug. 14, 2007, 09:53 AM
do any of you have any that show INCORRECT (but someone could THINK correct) carriage?


Since no one seems to want to fess up on this account, I'll step in with an admittedly incorrect picture :lol: http://pets.webshots.com/photo/2449733450100789832jAWqpg

Given that the horse in the picture is my old guy, at 25 years of age, I'm rather pleased with his performance, but he's simply not going to engage those creaky old hinquarters.

(And fwiw, a medication change made me put on 20lbs in a month :eek:, so that's why my butt is filling the saddle to overflowing. Needless to say, my doctor was willing to change that prescription. Ugh :P)

MagicRoseFarm
Aug. 14, 2007, 10:10 AM
do any of you have any that show INCORRECT (but someone could THINK correct) carriage?

from the same riding session as our "Correct" photo...
my interpretation of the problems with each are:
1. slight tension in the poll, throatlatch
2. Behind the vertical falling onto the forehand
3. not necessarily on the forehand but should be lighter in the front end and a bit more round through the back

EventGurlie
Aug. 14, 2007, 12:51 PM
I'll play haha. I'd like to think that she is in balance...

This is my 3yr old TB mare. The first 3 rows of pictures are from may, the first time I rode her since she was backed last year (she was lightly backed then she had the winter off). The last 2 rows are from this past week, so you can clearly see the development of her balance in just the 3 months difference. Excuse my riding, I am in my x-country saddle since my dressage saddle is broken and cant seem to find a leather repair that knows how to fix it :( and I've also only had hunter lessons in the last 3 or 4 yrs.

Three-year old TB mare (http://kent.facebook.com/album.php?aid=2114597&l=f2f4c&id=23300002)

Eclectic Horseman
Aug. 14, 2007, 01:50 PM
I just came back from the bookstore, looking for a birthday gift, and I happened to see "The USDF Guide to Dressage" by Jennifer O. Bryant. I thumbed through the section on the trot and was pleasantly surprised at how good the pictures were, not just of good trots, but also of bad ones for comparison. Looked like a pretty good book for those crossing over to dressage from other disciplines.

mickeydoodle
Aug. 14, 2007, 04:57 PM
who thinks trailhorse1 is good ol' trailblazer??????????

Mozart
Aug. 14, 2007, 05:42 PM
who thinks trailhorse1 is good ol' trailblazer?????????? :yes:

J. Turner
Aug. 14, 2007, 06:02 PM
So what kind of balance can you expect to develop in an older horse that wasn't developed correctly because of track background et al?

My guy is 17, is a tense TB, and has some typical hock issues. I want to continue riding and learning (and I think he can still learn). I don't think he'll ever be ideal. But if he could be balanced, bending in both directions in a training level outline (frame, level of balance - whatever is the pc term of the day), I'd be really happy. I do the 3' jumpers with him and would like eventually to try 2'6" (baby novice?) eventing, maybe a training level dressage test or two.

If I put him on here, we'd be ripped to shreds, deservedly. But I guess I'm asking a theoretical question, too. What can you expect of a certain horse? What do you want of a certain horse depending on his job? For instance, I don't think I'd want to ride a horse with a ton of suspension, very difficult to sit, etc. out foxhunting. Is there a balance that is acceptable in other disciplines, but not ideal for the developing dressage horse?

For instance, different job, different gait: jumping, canter.

http://pets.webshots.com/photo/1231856176045565162VoHHca

Horse's head is up, but this is two steps before the jump. He is intent on his job, happy, but perhaps not dead quiet relaxed. He is not pulling on the rider who has a decent line from elbow to mouth. So per job and level (jumps are about 3'), is this a balanced canter? My horse, not me riding.

saxony
Aug. 14, 2007, 08:22 PM
Cheekyhorse, yes, thanks that is my sweet boy:-)

TrakGeorge
Aug. 14, 2007, 08:31 PM
MagicRose and Wayside...

Thanks for "stepping up to the plate" - I think I can see what you guys are talking about as far as the CONS...

(wish I knew how to put pics up somewhere....and wish I had a scanner to put some up....)

THANKS EVERYONE...PLEASE feel free to keep them coming....I LOVE looking at the upper level horses, but the lower level and hunter/jumpers gives me the best idea...and I specially LOVE when you guys point out the tips as to what is right and wrong...

Lieslot
Aug. 14, 2007, 09:08 PM
Ehm, okay hit me with it.

-deleted-

I know for sure not perfect, but I'm kind of hoping it's not overly bad either.

I know, I'm tipping forward too much, but I do think my horse is giving it an okay shot. Curious how bad some think it is.
He's a DWB, but been re-scholed after years of foxhunting.

L.

FLnurseRN07
Aug. 14, 2007, 09:39 PM
I am also a hunter rider...and to the OP - I think that, differences in head carriage between hunters and dressage horses aside, this is a lovely picture of a hunter in a balanced, round, forward trot.

http://www.hassingerfarms.com/ups%20trot.jpg

I love this horse! Better balance and such a soft look! I would love a lot of the dressage horses out there (especially at lower levels) to move more like this. SO NICE.

What is his/her breeding, and is the horse for sale???



THANKS,
Lori
Connemara's do it all...

Carol Ames
Aug. 14, 2007, 10:10 PM
Here 15 year old TBG :)three day horseshowing 1st level, so working :yes:gaits;; the pics of collected trot were not available.; but, I will keep trying, they make an interesting contrast:winkgrin:

EqTrainer
Aug. 14, 2007, 10:32 PM
Let's see...

I like this photo because it shows a very young horse in good balance on unforgiving (read: wet, sloppy, on a hill) terrain.

slc2
Aug. 14, 2007, 10:41 PM
it might be good to define balance.

kristinq
Aug. 15, 2007, 01:15 AM
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v103/aljohnd/Horse%20Pics/CRdrsg02.jpg

Aww! It's Mack!!

bwills2
Aug. 15, 2007, 08:55 AM
I don't see how STF is bogging her horse down with her position, she looks like she weighs 100lbs!! I think her seat is very good and overall her position is very good, (It's a very humble opinion, but I definately don't have a picture to post that would look better!) I don't quite get the rude comments, kudos to her for remaining prosfessional.
STF - Love your last photo, what a beautiful horse!
Saxony - Your guy is gorgeous! I love his "Chrome"!

EqTrainer
Aug. 15, 2007, 03:11 PM
Yes Carol, that photo was taken on top of a wet clay hill in Georgia in January.. during a sleet storm. It was 33 degrees and the footing was disgusting. Needless to say, I bought that horse.

Carol Ames
Aug. 16, 2007, 09:05 PM
here it is!This was a hot and very humid day in may/hjune inMumford , Indiana, the first "official " event of the year , when I see these pics; I see how unfair;ly /harshly he was judged at that level ( 1st , where most of the test was at trot, and with a Tb trot; at Intermediate the majority of the tests were at canter , and shoulder in and half pass helped to even out the scores, so, we were more competitive

Carol Ames
Aug. 16, 2007, 09:29 PM
Watch Sue Harris' :Visible horse " presentation, and/ read her "Horse gaits balance and movement ":yes: which, I still hope someone will organize as a fundraiser for me here inNo. Va.:winkgrin: She would also do a "Centered riding clinic " while here for the presentation and, she sketches as she teaches so, you can "see: what she is talking about!:winkgrin:

ASB Stars
Aug. 16, 2007, 10:27 PM
Does this one work? He is only in hand :lol:

http://s156.photobucket.com/albums/t18/bryndewinesfarm/?action=view&current=Borealistrot.jpg

Donella
Aug. 16, 2007, 11:13 PM
Hey trailhorse, why don't you post a pic of you on one of your horses and show everyone here how it's done:lol:. Jeez, are you including JJ Tate and Donnermuth in that assesment??

Welkin007
Aug. 17, 2007, 12:33 AM
Is this getting to a balanced trot? He's my 6 yr old OTTB, I've been trying to learn dres-sage for about 2 years now, a year for him. This was at a schooling dressage show, and in my terrible show nerves I reverted back to semi-hunter position. Oh, and he's built a hair downhill too.

We are doing Training Level.

http://s5.photobucket.com/albums/y159/sparkyblue/?action=view&current=DSC_0042.jpg

Same show, in the arena

http://s5.photobucket.com/albums/y159/sparkyblue/LEC%20drsg/?action=view&current=DSC_0070.jpg

Schooling, about a month later. I think we are getting better.
http://s5.photobucket.com/albums/y159/sparkyblue/june%2030%202007/?action=view&current=DSC_0333.jpg

http://s5.photobucket.com/albums/y159/sparkyblue/june%2030%202007/?action=view&current=DSC_0295.jpg

Thanks!

Gucci Cowgirl
Aug. 17, 2007, 12:59 AM
Is this getting to a balanced trot? He's my 6 yr old OTTB, I've been trying to learn dres-sage for about 2 years now, a year for him. This was at a schooling dressage show, and in my terrible show nerves I reverted back to semi-hunter position. Oh, and he's built a hair downhill too.

We are doing Training Level.

http://s5.photobucket.com/albums/y159/sparkyblue/?action=view&current=DSC_0042.jpg

Same show, in the arena

http://s5.photobucket.com/albums/y159/sparkyblue/LEC%20drsg/?action=view&current=DSC_0070.jpg

Schooling, about a month later. I think we are getting better.
http://s5.photobucket.com/albums/y159/sparkyblue/june%2030%202007/?action=view&current=DSC_0333.jpg

http://s5.photobucket.com/albums/y159/sparkyblue/june%2030%202007/?action=view&current=DSC_0295.jpg

Thanks!

what a nice horse!

first pic looks very much on the forehand...the month after pic looks better, but you have no contact, and horses who aren't strong and through (like 4th level and above) can't be expected to be balanced with no help from the rider.

everybody wants a horse to have such light contact, but it takes years of correct training for the horse to even be physically ABLE to be so light in the hands.

If a training level or 1st level horse always has a loop in the reins ("look how nice and light he is!") then it is not properly in front of the leg and on the contact...it's just not possible.

Welkin007
Aug. 17, 2007, 01:14 AM
Thank you for your reply. Those pics are a moment in time, we were working on him staying the same when we release contact for a moment, during this particular lesson.

Same lesson, this pics was in a midst of me trying to get him to get a bit soft on that inside, hence my left hand being back. I know, we're not 100% correct, but that is why I'm taking lessons!
http://s5.photobucket.com/albums/y159/sparkyblue/june%2030%202007/?action=view&current=DSC_0318.jpg

I was hoping for improvement! This post has been very informative, for someone like me who's just starting out. I'd like to see more pics of horses who aren't "naturally inclined" for dressage, so I can see what is attainable for us and if we're on the right track. Its not really fair to expect my horse to carry himself like the top horses out there, he's just not built for it. But, figured we'd try the best we can, with what we've got!

Gucci Cowgirl
Aug. 17, 2007, 10:45 AM
he really is cute!

If you were my student I would have you shorten both your reins by about 4 inches, so that it doesnt take so long, and so much "backwards" to get your flexions...flexions are useless if there isnt an immediate forward give with leg applied...with reins this long if you were to give the appropriate amount after you got your flexion, he would probably trip or go even more on the forehand!

good work though, it's all the little details that help everything advance

LookinSouth
Aug. 17, 2007, 12:15 PM
I just came back from the bookstore, looking for a birthday gift, and I happened to see "The USDF Guide to Dressage" by Jennifer O. Bryant. I thumbed through the section on the trot and was pleasantly surprised at how good the pictures were, not just of good trots, but also of bad ones for comparison. Looked like a pretty good book for those crossing over to dressage from other disciplines.

Thanks. I am going to look into getting this book.

Daydream Believer
Aug. 17, 2007, 12:46 PM
I'll post a couple of recent pics of my six year old stallion that I think show a nice balanced trot. That is me up and we are at Kentucky Horse Park doing the Parade of Breeds demo. Have at them!

http://i97.photobucket.com/albums/l215/ssluss/KHP13.jpg

http://i97.photobucket.com/albums/l215/ssluss/KHP7.jpg

mbm
Aug. 17, 2007, 03:51 PM
it might be good to define balance.

i agree with this...

to me, many of the pics posted here are on the forehand to greater or lesser degrees, many are too short in the neck, btv and/or behind the bit, too low in the neck etc.

there was a thread on TOB about a good training level frame that has some really good pics posted of what a balanced horse looks like....

i think folks are trying, but in this thread there are really only a few pics posted that i thought were really good examples of a good balanced uphill trot.

slc2
Aug. 17, 2007, 03:57 PM
i think you are wrong, mbm. you're saying all these things are the same, and they aren't, and a horse can be 'balanced' without being 'uphill', and to a point depending on his level, he can look 'on the forehand' and STILL be in 'an appropriate balance for his level'.

i think that's what everyone is doing; confusing 'balanced' with 'generally nice and appealing'.

and i think that's not showing an understanding of 'balanced'.

mbm
Aug. 17, 2007, 04:21 PM
ok, so let's define "balance" - to me that means the horse is at least carrying weight evenly on all 4 legs. of course i could be wrong... but if a horse is on the forehand (for anything but T level) the horse can't be balanced.

what i see a lot is that horses are asked to go around with their necks/heads low (mouth s/b at height of the hip) .... and unless they are quite developed that just puts them on the forehand... traveling downhill..... and how can a horse be in balance if it is going downhill?

slc2
Aug. 17, 2007, 04:32 PM
how can you tell from a tiny photo that a horse has all the weight evenn on all 4 legs? and at what point in the horse's training, do you think he would cease to have more weight on his front legs?

hint...at a point which 99% of horses will never reach.

Gucci Cowgirl
Aug. 17, 2007, 04:43 PM
I agree with slc - balance is kind of the product of being through, in front of the leg, and in the appropriate tempo for the conformation and temperament of the horse being ridden...This is the idaeal type of "balance" for dressage horses...

And horse can be built downhill, but still be ridden in balance - as long as the rhythm isn't too fast.

Another way to achieve "balance" only, is to put the horse in the correct tempo. BUT then all you have is a horse who is not running, but it could still be behind the leg, stiff, or not through.

Just because a horse is in balance, does not mean it is through the back and in front of the leg.

Look at racehorses - they are galloping 35 mph, but a lot of them are in perfect balance, for the gait they are in.

Different ways to achieve "balance" depending on the training level of the horse..

Carol Ames
Aug. 17, 2007, 07:27 PM
Welk, He looks very nicely muscled :yes:; I would like to see him up more in the withers; I agree that sortening your reins and allowing your hands:lol: to float up slightly would encourage a more upward presentation in your horse ; I do agree that your basicwork apears to have been correct ; now encourage him to"elevate " his forehand slightly; You can do much of this on the ground with "bodywork "eespecially backlifts, and pelvic tilts :yes:

Carol Ames
Aug. 17, 2007, 07:32 PM
have any that show INCORRECT (but someone could THINK correct) carriage?


I doubt that anyone fron this forum would thik this horse balanced ; I present it for comparison

Carol Ames
Aug. 17, 2007, 07:40 PM
Let me try again to post this pic; The satachments button disappers before I can get to it:eek::o

Carol Ames
Aug. 17, 2007, 07:45 PM
:o have any that show INCORRECT (but someone could THINK correct) carriage?

LarkspurCO
Aug. 17, 2007, 08:03 PM
I agree with slc - balance is kind of the product of being through, in front of the leg, and in the appropriate tempo for the conformation and temperament of the horse being ridden...This is the idaeal type of "balance" for dressage horses...

And horse can be built downhill, but still be ridden in balance - as long as the rhythm isn't too fast.

Another way to achieve "balance" only, is to put the horse in the correct tempo. BUT then all you have is a horse who is not running, but it could still be behind the leg, stiff, or not through.

Just because a horse is in balance, does not mean it is through the back and in front of the leg.

Look at racehorses - they are galloping 35 mph, but a lot of them are in perfect balance, for the gait they are in.

Different ways to achieve "balance" depending on the training level of the horse..

Very well said.

Here is Mike Schaffer's short definition:
"A horse can move in 'true balance' when he has more weight on his forelegs than rear, (on his forehand), when his weight is evenly distributed (working gaits) or when he has more weight on his rear legs than forelegs (collected gaits). A horse is in true balance when his speed, tempo, stride, and energy are in the correct ratio to one another."

slc2
Aug. 17, 2007, 08:08 PM
and the kicker is, that kind of balance has NEVER been sufficient for moving up the levels in dressage, not even for staying at ONE level.

Lieslot
Aug. 17, 2007, 08:08 PM
Nice example Carol.
So basically the head'set' is there, but not enough engagement from behind, correct?

It almost looks as if this horse's croup is higher then it's withers, but this is then probably due to falling on the forehand.

Out of curiosity does it come more naturally to an uphill high withered horse to carry himself up into the reins, then it does for a more downhill built horse?
I notice that my highwithered boy is much easier to elevate, then his more flatwithered mate. Seems to take much more driving on the latter to get him round (I couldn't really call it a lift with him, but more a rounded frame).

Gucci Cowgirl
Aug. 17, 2007, 08:35 PM
Nice example Carol.
So basically the head'set' is there, but not enough engagement from behind, correct?




well, the truth is that the "headset" is incorrect, and that is what is causing the lack of engagement.

and slc, I don't think anyone is trying to say that the type of balance that a racehorse is in, or a forehand-loaded horse in an appropriate rhythm, creates a good dressage foundation...

I think it is more pointing towards the OP's origninal question, of looking for a "balanced" trot - the balance doesn't really make anything correct or incorrect, it just can be a side-effect of proper riding and training...

so the OP's original question is kind of moot...because debating balance isn't really what what will help educate people about correct dressage training.

meupatdoes
Aug. 17, 2007, 08:54 PM
OK, I submit my hunter guy.
Lemme know what you think!

Here is a still pic:
http://smg.photobucket.com/albums/v298/meupatdoes/?action=view&current=-1-1.jpg

And the video is in my signature under The Hana.

QLD
Aug. 17, 2007, 08:57 PM
OK...

No comments about the seat...having blew out my groin a few weeks before, it was rather 'uncomfortable'....

http://s231.photobucket.com/albums/ee80/QLDAudi/?action=view&current=AudiCindi.jpg

cheekyhorse
Aug. 17, 2007, 09:58 PM
I think it is more pointing towards the OP's origninal question, of looking for a "balanced" trot - the balance doesn't really make anything correct or incorrect, it just can be a side-effect of proper riding and training...

so the OP's original question is kind of moot...because debating balance isn't really what what will help educate people about correct dressage training.


Well said!

slc2
Aug. 18, 2007, 08:32 AM
ah...

not exactly. a horse, unless he falls down, is 'balanced', and proof that he's 'balanced' is that he is not lying on his side struggling to get back up.

if he 'balances' by throwing his head up to make every upward transition, if he lands on the rider's hands with 1300 lbs of weight right after that momentarily 'pretty' picture is taken - you can't see that in one still photo!!!

'balance' in dressage is not simply a amtter of not falling down, or of taking one nice photo frame.

what i'm saying is, i disagree that 'balance' in dressage can be determined by looking at a single still photo!!!!! :yes: in fact i disagree completely, that this has any hope of being possible.

Gucci Cowgirl
Aug. 18, 2007, 10:05 AM
ah...

not exactly. a horse, unless he falls down, is 'balanced'


mm, I disagree - when a horse is being ridden over tempo, and is "running" at the trot or canter, is cleary not balanced - they cant turn or make a transition without possibly stumbling or bailing out on the corner.

If you think about it, even a horse that is lying down is "balanced" in that he doesn't need to make any adjustments to be able to maintain a position...

that's why balance is moot, it means so many different things, and is so subjective.

I do agree that a single photo can only give an "idea" or feeling of balance, compare a GP horse in piaffe to a TL horse overbent with hocks trailing and shoulders diving down...you can say that one "looks" more balanced than the other from the photos.

QLD
Aug. 18, 2007, 10:28 AM
Balance is more than a side effect. Correct balance, both laterally and longitudinally is a goal for every dressage rider, or at least in my eyes should be. It's the progressive exercises we work with our horse, that help him develop the strength, suppleness, through-ness, and relaxation to become more balanced. Just think about the difference in balance alone between a working gait and collected gait. Or more 'grossly' the difference in balance between those first awkward and unsure trot steps under saddle, and a well trained piaffe.

If a moment in a picture can not demonstrate balance, then Museler needs to find another medium for his diagrams...

Gucci Cowgirl
Aug. 18, 2007, 10:41 AM
I just think that the word "Balance" is too generic, and leaves way too much room for interpretation.

that's why we will all never agree on this thread!

Fairview Horse Center
Aug. 18, 2007, 10:53 AM
Here is my boy in a nice balanced working trot

Cartier
Aug. 18, 2007, 05:50 PM
Here's one of Commander (our 2004 by ISF Contango)... early training

Bogie
Aug. 18, 2007, 08:30 PM
Very well said.

Here is Mike Schaffer's short definition:
"A horse can move in 'true balance' when he has more weight on his forelegs than rear, (on his forehand), when his weight is evenly distributed (working gaits) or when he has more weight on his rear legs than forelegs (collected gaits). A horse is in true balance when his speed, tempo, stride, and energy are in the correct ratio to one another."

Ah yes, but look who said it. :no:

As someone who has ridden in clinics with him, I take much of what he says with a grain of salt. He's very helpful with establishing work in hand, but under saddle? Well, enough said.

J. Turner
Aug. 18, 2007, 09:24 PM
Here's one of Commander (our 2004 by ISF Contango)... early training

I think he's LOFFly. He looks very balanced to me.

dressagediosa
Aug. 18, 2007, 09:29 PM
do any of you have any that show INCORRECT (but someone could THINK correct) carriage?

These are proofs from the King Oak Dressage Days show a few weeks ago. The horse is my 9-year-old Hanoverian mare, Clairvoya, at Prix St. Georges. I believe these were from our bad ride, 65.something, but I'm not sure. Moot point. :)

At any rate, start with this one: http://www.hoofpix.com/index.php?pageId=100&id=14606&start=60&lightbox_page=&search_mode= . This is early in an extended trot. Look at the angle from withers to croup. Uphill looking. The angle of her hindleg to the ground is the same, if not better, than the angle of her front leg to the ground. It's a split second too late to be that perfect classic extended trot photo pose, but at first blush, it's pretty good, right?

Well, have a look at how her left hind is more off the ground than her right front. She's tipping onto her forehand. A few steps later, it's going to look like this one: http://www.hoofpix.com/index.php?pageId=100&id=14608&start=60&lightbox_page=&search_mode= . Eww.

Compare these to this photo: http://www.hoofpix.com/index.php?pageId=100&id=14598&start=40&lightbox_page=&search_mode= . Still not perfect - again, the right hind is coming off the ground before the left front - but she is dramatically more engaged and uphill. She's a really super horse, with great uphill conformation, so she can be deceptive in just one photo.

Lots of the other photos here are of youngsters, where uphill balance is still at the "god given" phase, and theyve not yet gotten to the point where they can be pushed for greater collection, uphill push and engagement. For what it's worth, even as Cleo gets closer to confirming the Grand Prix work, any problem we encouter comes down to a lack of engagement and uphill balance. :) We work on it every day!

Gucci Cowgirl
Aug. 18, 2007, 09:35 PM
beautiful horse - the lack of engagement could be from the curb chain being parallel to the ground, and the neck being a tad short with face behind the vertical...

was it the first time you have used this particular bit combo?

lovely rider too!

J. Turner
Aug. 18, 2007, 10:39 PM
These are proofs from the King Oak Dressage Days show a few weeks ago. The horse is my 9-year-old Hanoverian mare, Clairvoya, at Prix St. Georges. I believe these were from our bad ride, 65.something, but I'm not sure. Moot point. :)

At any rate, start with this one: http://www.hoofpix.com/index.php?pageId=100&id=14606&start=60&lightbox_page=&search_mode= . This is early in an extended trot. Look at the angle from withers to croup. Uphill looking. The angle of her hindleg to the ground is the same, if not better, than the angle of her front leg to the ground. It's a split second too late to be that perfect classic extended trot photo pose, but at first blush, it's pretty good, right?

Well, have a look at how her left hind is more off the ground than her right front. She's tipping onto her forehand. A few steps later, it's going to look like this one: http://www.hoofpix.com/index.php?pageId=100&id=14608&start=60&lightbox_page=&search_mode= . Eww.

Compare these to this photo: http://www.hoofpix.com/index.php?pageId=100&id=14598&start=40&lightbox_page=&search_mode= . Still not perfect - again, the right hind is coming off the ground before the left front - but she is dramatically more engaged and uphill. She's a really super horse, with great uphill conformation, so she can be

You both look wonderful. I am not a professional, and I see what you are critiquing in each. BUT, one question, isn't she a little behind the vertical?

ms raven
Aug. 19, 2007, 05:16 AM
Dressagediosa. Love that third photo of your mare, lovely!

I try to photograph horses and so am always trying to develop my eye for catching the "right moment".

When I critique photos or my own horse's progress in photos and such, one thing that I look for in the "overall picture" (aside from the basics) will be parallel legs. Diagonal cannons should always be parallel to each other and at the same angle with the ground.

We could post any of a million pictures of horses doing extended trot, uphill and with GREAT reach in the front end. They may get ewwws and awwwws from some but unless they have the same reach and flexion through the hock, they aren't using themselves correctly in some way, IMO. I just find this is the easiest way for me, (a non professional) to judge the way horses are moving. :)

But on to photos, have a lot to learn and I'd so like to try. :cool:

The first photo, for the might be mistaken category, is of my mare, three at the time and with about 2 and a half weeks under saddle. She should have had her nose more forward of vertical at this point but I think she looks relaxed, attentive, forward and somewhat even. This mare will easily set her neck in "that frame" but in this photo she has not yet learned to seek contact with the bit, is on the forehand and is using her front end to pull rather than using her hind end.

Second photo is of the same mare carrying herself.

Third is from earlier this summer. We are coming off a few months downtime but despite the lack of conditioning, she easily tracks up and engages her hindend much better, carries herself more uphill in front, appears (to me anyhow :confused:) much more balanced and is on the bit. *

I on the other hand, could always use more work. :no:

*wee note re: the bit as evidenced in the last photo is a bit big. My other pinches.

dressagediosa
Aug. 19, 2007, 05:38 AM
isn't she a little behind the vertical?
Yep!


the lack of engagement could be from the curb chain being parallel to the ground, and the neck being a tad short with face behind the vertical...

was it the first time you have used this particular bit combo?

No, and I'm inclined to think it's the other way around - her neck is short because I'm good at grabbing necks, but the lack of engagement causes the behind-the-vertical. When I really have the hindlegs and can ride her up in front of me, I can ride her more open. Chicken and egg thing. :)

Obviously, these photos are not perfect, but I hoped they addressed the OP's question regarding balance, and I don't like using other peoples photos, as I don't feel it's fair to submit someone else to critique without their consent.

slc2
Aug. 19, 2007, 09:35 AM
"the lack of engagement could be from the curb chain being parallel to the ground"

nope. i think you mean the shank of the curb bit, but nevertheless, no. agree with dressage diosa, that is a chicken and the egg thing, the rider feels the horse losing balance and his only recourse, other than just watching the horse land on his face, is to try rebalance with half halt.

how far the shank of the curb bit can move back, is determined in large part by how loose the curb chain is. it being back does not mean the rider is pulling that much harder, and it being that much forward doesn't mean the rider has light hands - the amt of movement the shank can make is determined by the tightness of the chain - the curb bit shank can be parallel to the mouth and the rider using it very forcefully, if the curb chain is tight.

the angle of the shank means nothing, it is dependent on the adjustment of the curb chain, one needs to look more at the overall picture.

looking at how high the hind feet are in relation to the front - having that be a useful indicator depends on the angle of the photo as well as if the horse itself is just the type that ALWAYS lifts the hind feet much higher.

Sabine
Aug. 19, 2007, 10:54 AM
how about this- not a good angle and of course a tad btv...actually not if seen from the right angle...;)

http://i30.photobucket.com/albums/c322/Sabindi/Lafit-July2007079.jpg

Gucci Cowgirl
Aug. 19, 2007, 11:01 AM
LOL yes I meant curb shanks, not chain...

and yes, I know that often the reason shanks can be pulled parallel to the ground is because of incorrectly fitted chains.

That being said, I think it is more likely in MOST cases, that the rider is causing the lack of engagement because of too strong of rein aids.

maybe dressagediosa correctly diagnosed her own issue, maybe I am wrong for this particular photo set...but I do believe that in general, even if you are trying to engage the hind legs more, all the leg and seat in the world will do no good, if the bits and reins are used against the forward motion, especially when the neck is too short and the head behind the vertical.

so the best approach for most people with this problem, would be to be careful with the reins especially in a double, and then increase the impulsion from behind, in that order... which allow your horse to come in front of you, open the throatlatch and lift the withers.

adelmo95
Aug. 24, 2007, 10:00 PM
I thought I would post a few pictures of what I think looks like a balanced trot, I also have an example of one that looks pretty fancy but is not correct:
- If you go to http://www.freewebs.com/adelmo95/elmopictures.htm the top picture to mee is incorrect, it looks fancy with all of the front end action but his hind end does not match his front end. The picture at the bottom of the page however to me says balance.
- If you go to http://www.freewebs.com/adelmo95/griffen.htm you can see some pictures of what I would consider pretty well balanced for a green 3 year old having had approximately 45 days on him at the point the fall pictures were taken (the ones where I am in a puffy coat) and maybe 20 rides on him in the other trot picture.

Moll
Aug. 25, 2007, 01:46 PM
how about this- not a good angle and of course a tad btv...actually not if seen from the right angle...;)

http://i30.photobucket.com/albums/c322/Sabindi/Lafit-July2007079.jpg

No, seen straight from the side it would be more than a tad BTV.

grayarabpony
Aug. 25, 2007, 02:22 PM
how about this- not a good angle and of course a tad btv...actually not if seen from the right angle...;)

http://i30.photobucket.com/albums/c322/Sabindi/Lafit-July2007079.jpg


The horse is behind the vertical but I still really like how his body looks. And usually I hate to see a horse behind the vertical.

EqTrainer
Aug. 25, 2007, 03:36 PM
FWIW, a horse who is BTV - unless put there by the hand, which in Sabine's case I would doubt that is so - is experiencing a loss of balance and is not correcting it by reaching up/out. Of course any photo in which a horse is BTV is only a moment in time. IME many horses explore BTV while learning to use their bodies undersaddle. It doesn't freak me out because I know I did not put them there.

Anyway, I digress. My point is - if the horse is BTV, he is not in balance by definition of what BTV represents at its most benign presentation.

Regarding the shortened neck/curb issue - as soon as you put a curb rein in the hand it reveals if the hand is properly passive and the energy is being properly directed when asking for more impulsion. If not, the neck shortens and the head comes back. It takes a very perceptive rider to not bring the hand back to meet where the horse is pushing back to - and that is literally what the horse is doing - pushing his energy back from the base of the neck. The answer lies in shortening your reins to the place that the horse currently puts himself and then pushing his energy out in front of you *while keeping your hand passive and in front of your body*. Your hand cannot come back at your body, you must keep the space in front of you open, shortening the reins stops the impulse to pull the hand back when the horse pushes back.

When the horse takes the bit *out* then you can allow him more rein. If you make more impulsion without the hand passively allowing it to come through, the horse just kinks up as shown. More impulsion alone is not always the answer - the answer usually involves some correction of the direction of the impulsion/energy.

grayarabpony
Aug. 25, 2007, 05:06 PM
The root of the horse's neck that Sabine is riding looks raised. I think that's why I like the way the horse looks even though he is BTV.

dressagediosa
Aug. 25, 2007, 08:26 PM
The answer lies in shortening your reins to the place that the horse currently puts himself and then pushing his energy out in front of you *while keeping your hand passive and in front of your body*...shortening the reins stops the impulse to pull the hand back when the horse pushes back.


Not necessarily - isn't it entirely possible to shorten the reins too much, to artificially shorten the neck and even pull the horse behind the vertical? I know its possible because I can do it! (not a skill I'm proud of!) :)

I maintain the theory that being behind the vertical can have many causes, but a big one is a lack of engagement. In my photos, my lengthening or shortening of either or both reins would not have changed the fact that I haven't yet figured out how to ride that particular horse's neck and back and hind end all at the same time for the entirety of a seven minute dressage test.

We seem to have hijacked this thread; sorry to the OP! I hope this discussion is useful.

EqTrainer
Aug. 25, 2007, 10:06 PM
You have to shorten your reins enough *to keep your hands in front of your body*. There is a precise rein length that, when the horse is in this pattern, that is correct. Shortening your reins also stops you from "looking" for the contact as the horse is evading it.

Sure, you can shorten the reins and pull the horses head back. But people seem to do that well enough with the reins long :lol: Shortening the rein helps you learn to keep your hands in front of you and passive. There is a dynamic between you and your core/the horses energy and how you keep it pushed out in front of you.

Check out footage from any Olympics - and note the hand position of the riders. They all clearly understand the dynamic at hand.

Heinz 57
Aug. 25, 2007, 11:49 PM
I'm no dressage rider (anymore). But I submit, as an incorrect example, the dressage horse that I masqueraded as an eventer for a day. For informational purposes, at the time she was about 13 and is a full Lipizzan. We scored decently on this test, nothing spectacular. It would've translated to a 60-61% IIRC, and the equivalent to a mid-level training level test.

http://smg.photobucket.com/albums/1003/erin7264/pony%20slideshow/?action=view&current=EM_FC3C4934.jpg

I know what I perceive to be wrong here. I'm curious to see what others say just for educational purposes as she's not my horse and she is currently showing at a much higher level (in the real dressage world).

siegi b.
Aug. 26, 2007, 09:45 AM
Here's a trot picture I happen to like.....

Caroline Weber
Aug. 26, 2007, 09:52 AM
This looks reasonably balanced to me...especially for a 3 year old! :eek:

http://1strealty.ath.cx/hwfarm.com/2_Late/Pics/WalkOfFame/Walk%20of%20Fame%20001_0010.jpg

This mare has already been sold, so I'm not promoting anything. If you want to see her original page with more photos for comparison:

http://1strealty.ath.cx/hwfarm.com/2_Late/urls/walkoffame.htm

grayarabpony
Aug. 26, 2007, 03:26 PM
I'm no dressage rider (anymore). But I submit, as an incorrect example, the dressage horse that I masqueraded as an eventer for a day. For informational purposes, at the time she was about 13 and is a full Lipizzan. We scored decently on this test, nothing spectacular. It would've translated to a 60-61% IIRC, and the equivalent to a mid-level training level test.




I don't see anything wrong with the picture, except the placement of the hands looks a little strange. However, the contact is soft. Looks more like a hunter hack than a dressage test but at training level that's fine. She looks forward and balanced.


This looks reasonably balanced to me...especially for a 3 year old! :eek:

http://1strealty.ath.cx/hwfarm.com/2_Late/Pics/WalkOfFame/Walk%20of%20Fame%20001_0010.jpg

This mare has already been sold, so I'm not promoting anything. If you want to see her original page with more photos for comparison:

http://1strealty.ath.cx/hwfarm.com/2_Late/urls/walkoffame.htm

I like her canter pictures much better than her trot pictures. Talk about uphill!

EqTrainer
Aug. 26, 2007, 03:31 PM
This comment is not directed towards anyone's pictures specifically, but just in general..

I see a lot of young horses that people think are in balance because they are poll high.. but the neck is *shortened*. What is the general consensus on this? Do these horses eventually lengthen in the neck as they get stronger/more training (as a BTV horse will) ? Is this a possible side effect of the current trend towards an upright rectangularly shaped horse?

Heinz 57
Aug. 26, 2007, 03:53 PM
Yes, don't mind my hands...they are (were) piano hands. Not so bad anymore. :)