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halfhALTER
Jan. 20, 2011, 12:49 PM
I recently had a dressage lesson on a horse other than my own with an instructor I've never ridden with before. In the past, every dressage instructor I've lessoned with has wanted me to carry a really forward pace, and has preferred an over-tempo to the horse being too slow. I do not ride at a high level of dressage (2nd/3rd level on my own horse) and most of the horses I've ridden in lessons were lower level--1st level or lower--horses. It was explained to me by these past instructors that they didn't want me to feel like the horse should constantly be running, but they were working to establish a push from behind and responsiveness to my leg aids. This made sense and I've had good success with it.

With this instructor, however, it was the complete opposite. I felt like the horse was BARELY moving and she kept telling me I was going too fast and I needed to slow him down more. She kept referring to his "natural rhythm" and that he needed to be at that "natural rhythm" in order to work properly. The horse felt like he was falling out behind himself and I felt uncomfortable keeping a contact on the reins since there was no energy to contain in the bridle (this and the fact that she also kept telling me to give my hands forward and make a loop in the rein, which released all connection). The instructor kept telling me that if I could see the trot from the ground, I'd be able to see it was "very nice." But, to be honest, I would have been very surprised if the horse was tracking up.

There were many other issues I had with the lesson, which included being told to do 10m circles on a horse with no flexibility or bend and who was not established in the outside rein at all. But the snail's pace and subsequent extremely short stride seemed to be the baseline of all the issues this horse had. The instructor said that "impulsion doesn't come from speed," which I'm aware of, but this horse didn't feel like he had either.

I really like this instructor as a person (hence the alter), so I'd like to try and understand this line of thinking...I'm hoping you all can help me out! I asked lots of questions during the lesson to try and understand, but I really didn't get much else besides the above stuff about "natural rhythm."

shawneeAcres
Jan. 20, 2011, 01:00 PM
I am of the camp that, particularly at low levels or younger horses, that too many people push these horses to carry a tempo/speed that is too fast and the horse is running forward with little balance. I like to establish a regular rhythum with the horse moving a bit slower to begin with and then add the impulsion as the horse gaisn strength, carrying power and balance. BUT I wouldn't be doing 10 meter sircles on a horse that was at that level.

InsideLeg2OutsideRein
Jan. 20, 2011, 01:02 PM
Well, on a green horse, sometimes you may have to go a bit slower than you normally would want the horse to go, just so you can help the horse feel in balance. I had this issue when I was riding a friend's Arab, who with every turn would panic about her balance and start running and stiffen up. So in a remedial case, I can see that, but only temporarily. I started asking for a little bit more as soon as some basic trust about the balance issues was established.

Other than that, the motto is "forward, but slowly" - so as you said, not running the horse off its feet, but they've got to work to properly swing over the back.

halfhALTER
Jan. 20, 2011, 01:21 PM
Thanks for the replies! Both of those make total sense. I hope it didn't sound like I wanted to run the horse off its feet! I think my issue wasn't so much that I was going slow, but that I was going REALLY REALLY slow.

I hope it's okay to post youtube videos which don't belong to me to compare the speeds...but maybe this could help? I want to see if my perception of "too slow" is wacky. **this isn't an attempt to insult the riders in these videos since they are doing a totally different discipline, they were just the best representations I could find in my search!**

When I was going about the speed of the chestnut horse in this video, I was told I was going too fast and I needed to slow down to a "crawl". The horse in this video could have easily passed the 16.2hh+ horse I was on: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i9SUuj7PKiw

The horse in this video is also trotting a bit faster than I was told to (if I went this speed, I was told I was rushing him): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yf4HG57Cvgg

...I apologize in advance if I sound argumentative. I have a difficult time communicating about topics like this without being kind of blunt. The above responses totally make sense, I just want to make sure they make sense for the situation I was in as well :)

purplnurpl
Jan. 20, 2011, 01:22 PM
I'm under the impression that this was not a green horse?

sounds like an odd lesson to me.

shawneeAcres
Jan. 20, 2011, 02:44 PM
I think the only way we could REALLY give you advice is if you post a video of the actual lesson. Posting those "random videos" and saying they are faster than you were going may be your IMPRESSION of the speed you were going. Then again it may not, but without seeing what was going on in your lesson I doubt we can really comment

shawneeAcres
Jan. 20, 2011, 02:47 PM
Here is an example of what I mean by "slow" to allow the young horse ( a 4 yr old WB that had been under saddle for 3 months) to keep a rhythum and balance. THis is a filly we trained for the owner last year:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c4MV7q6KPms

And a 3 coming 4 yr old that we are working on relaxing the back and accepting the bit, she has a tendency to get short strided and quick:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UurTw0tZy84

Marcella
Jan. 20, 2011, 02:51 PM
I wonder if it is a matter of speed vs. ground being covered. For example, when trotting, it feels like the extended trot is so much 'faster' but really you are just covering a whole lot more ground when the actual tempo should remain the same as in a regular working trot.

netg
Jan. 20, 2011, 03:09 PM
I laughed when I opened the first video and knew exactly where it was taken from my first glimpse of mountains. (And sorry, I have to share - one of my first horse shows (http://farm6.static.flickr.com/5282/5278802661_f101ae33f2.jpg), back when it was called C-6. Ah, nostalgia!)


Your description, including the loop in the rein, makes it sound as if you're dealing with a former stock horse person who has decided it'll be easy to do dressage. It's hard to tell without seeing your ride, but it's also possible the horse was more collected, and she was trying to get you to get him to pick up his feet more, without lengthening, yet without holding his head tight.

As I'm starting to work on more collection with my horse, I change the speed of my post, and use MORE leg as I slow his rhythm. I'm asking him to lift - legs, body. I don't tighten my reins, as I am trying to keep his neck long, and the loop in the reins may have been a request to make it *feel* that way to you. I also spiral in to smaller circles in order to get my horse using his hind end, when I don't want him bending off the inside rein turning, but rather shifting weight back to do it. It's very possible "stiff" to you was "weight not shifted back enough" to the horse.

So as others said - it's hard to say. It tends to sound like she just doesn't know what she's doing, but it could be that there's something lost in the translation and your perception of what's happening - as when you put two horse people together, with different experiences, translation errors happen all the time!

halfhALTER
Jan. 20, 2011, 03:18 PM
Unfortunately, the lesson was not video taped. Though, I do have a pretty good feel of rhythm and stride and this horse just felt way slower than anything I've ever ridden, and his steps felt 2' feet long. I was able to allow him to step out a bit more a couple times and created a pace similar to the videos you posted, Shawnee. Not rushed and off balance, but with more step behind them and more impulsion. I've ridden horses that have a slower rhythm, but where you can feel the swing of them stepping up in the trot. I have one myself.

Any comments on the "natural rhythm" bit? The instructor seemed overly concerned with going so slow not because she wanted me to go slow, per se, but because it was the horse's "natural rhythm."

(not sure if this is relevant, but I just compared Shawnee's videos to a video I have from when my horse was still very green to compare the trot rhythms and they are very similar. So I don't think I'm completely off-base with how this horse felt vs. how he looked. I could be completely wrong, but that's always a possibility! ;) )


t's hard to tell without seeing your ride, but it's also possible the horse was more collected, and she was trying to get you to get him to pick up his feet more, without lengthening, yet without holding his head tight.

The lesson would have made more sense if the horse was collected, so I can totally see that possible interpretation. Unfortunately, as someone who *has* ridden upper level horses who know actual collection and who is working on strengthening collection with my own horse, there is no way this horse was even close to the level of thinking of collection :no:


So as others said - it's hard to say. It tends to sound like she just doesn't know what she's doing, but it could be that there's something lost in the translation and your perception of what's happening - as when you put two horse people together, with different experiences, translation errors happen all the time!

I guess I'm at the point where I really think 90% of what she said was total rubbish, but I like her enough as a person to hope I can be swayed to at least *understand* where she was coming from, even if I don't agree.

EqTrainer
Jan. 20, 2011, 03:21 PM
Balance is what matters. She may have been trying to teach you something specific (which is indeed the point of lessoning) or perhaps that particular horse responds best to being ridden in that tempo. Overall, I agree that a lot - and I mean, a lot! - of people think riding a horse over tempo and running it into the bridle is correct - it is not. It can be used as a tool but should not be your every day way of going, sadly, it often is used in place of skill and the horses suffer for it.

Eclectic Horseman
Jan. 20, 2011, 03:23 PM
This issue came up in a clinic with a BNT. The professional who was riding in the clinic was totally shocked that the clinician kept telling her to slow down. She had ridden other horses with the clinician, and he had always told her to go more forward.

It was relatively easy for me in the audience to see what the trouble was. She had pushed this horse out of his rythmn and his front feet were going faster than his hind feet. Once she slowed the horse's forehand way down with the reins, she could then ask for the hind leg to be a little quicker.

That is not the first time I have seen gait impurities in young horses that have been asked for more tempo than they have the strength or balance to give. Another symptom that crops up is for the horse to straighten his hind legs causing the rump to pop up, and then the horse goes downhill like a wheelbarrow. Then the gait starts to get lateral.

So I agree with those who say it depends on what the horse is doing and what you may need to do in order to correct it.

mickeydoodle
Jan. 20, 2011, 03:23 PM
I agree with you, sounds like the instructor was off base.

halfhALTER
Jan. 20, 2011, 03:37 PM
It was relatively easy for me in the audience to see what the trouble was. She had pushed this horse out of his rythmn and his front feet were going faster than his hind feet. Once she slowed the horse's forehand way down with the reins, she could then ask for the hind leg to be a little quicker.

My own horse had the same issues with his front legs moving faster than his hind legs, so I thought this was what was happening and I just wasn't feeling it correctly. In this case, the instructor told me that I was making his hind end move too fast for his front end. Is that the same sort of scenario, just reversed? It doesn't seem that way in my head, but I don't know.

Eclectic Horseman
Jan. 20, 2011, 03:42 PM
My own horse had the same issues with his front legs moving faster than his hind legs, so I thought this was what was happening and I just wasn't feeling it correctly. In this case, the instructor told me that I was making his hind end move too fast for his front end. Is that the same sort of scenario, just reversed? It doesn't seem that way in my head, but I don't know.


I think that what happens when the hind legs go too fast is that they they straighten and go up and down rapidly like pistons or an eggbeater movement (lots of OTTBs move like that.) It can result in a lateral gait.

Either way, these gait irregularities develop as an evasion, usually because the horse is being asked for too much too soon.

cyndi
Jan. 20, 2011, 03:57 PM
If you are doing 2nd/3rd on your own horse, you certainly know enough to discern between 'forward,' 'balanced,' 'unbalanced' and 'too slow.'

I think the instructor was off base.

EqTrainer
Jan. 20, 2011, 04:06 PM
If you are doing 2nd/3rd on your own horse, you certainly know enough to discern between 'forward,' 'balanced,' 'unbalanced' and 'too slow.'

I think the instructor was off base.


If the OP rides more than one horse, particularly at that level, then yes. But if no, then her judgement may be tempered by having spent most of her time developing the feel of just one horse.

InsideLeg2OutsideRein
Jan. 20, 2011, 04:26 PM
I'd say go with your gut feeling. If you don't feel like you made any progress during that lesson, maybe just hang our with the instructor for coffee (since you say you like her) rather than pay for a lesson ;).

Coppers mom
Jan. 20, 2011, 05:05 PM
I know a guy that trains just like this, so I'm pretty sure I know what you're talking about. There's a specific reason they do it, some "great master" from 300 years ago said slow down and now they take it way too far. I know he'd done a lot of reading and was convinced he was right, but he still ruined a lot of horse's gaits doing it.

caddym
Jan. 20, 2011, 06:23 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uo5jWZyXObI&feature=player_embedded

This is a clip from a lesson with Lendon gray. This horse has a very specific contection problem. Its my very first day ever riding with Lendon although I had riden my other horse earlier in the day. And this is the very very begining of the ride.

I posted this as Lendon had me warm up much slower than I have ever done and this is much different than I have been asked to - the results were quiet good.

I have a feeling though that your trainer is full of doo doo

MelantheLLC
Jan. 20, 2011, 07:33 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uo5jWZyXObI&feature=player_embedded

This is a clip from a lesson with Lendon gray. This horse has a very specific contection problem. Its my very first day ever riding with Lendon although I had riden my other horse earlier in the day. And this is the very very begining of the ride.

I posted this as Lendon had me warm up much slower than I have ever done and this is much different than I have been asked to - the results were quiet good.

There is a trot just "under" the trot, where the horse is just a hair from walking tempo but to keep balance, they use a lot of upward power and become very cadenced, almost a passage-like spring. They must balance without using forward momentum. It's called a schooling trot. You can begin to see it in Caddy's lovely horse, how the push is upward off the the ground.

I have no idea if this is what the OP's instructor was getting at. But if your horse is well schooled to voice aids on the lunge, try it there. Ask the horse to slow the trot down to where he almost walks, but make him keep trotting at that very slow tempo. If you can get this just right, he will bring up his back and produce some of the best, balanced elastic trot you can imagine, it's lovely to watch.

princessfluffybritches
Jan. 20, 2011, 08:42 PM
I think that they call a working trot because it's a working trot. A working trot should be your every day base point, where the horse is going forward enough to reach for the bit and make contact. I would imagine going to slow is like meandering, not being able to straighten your horse, or stay on a light contact. Furthermore, I dont recall any dressage movements being done so slow that the horse is behind the bit.
You sound like you were doing well with correct methods. I would continue with the methods you did well with.

Marcella
Jan. 20, 2011, 09:22 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uo5jWZyXObI&feature=player_embedded

This is a clip from a lesson with Lendon gray. This horse has a very specific contection problem. Its my very first day ever riding with Lendon although I had riden my other horse earlier in the day. And this is the very very begining of the ride.

I posted this as Lendon had me warm up much slower than I have ever done and this is much different than I have been asked to - the results were quiet good.

I have a feeling though that your trainer is full of doo doo

Thank you. That was really nice to watch and listen to.

dressurpferd01
Jan. 20, 2011, 09:37 PM
Here is an example of what I mean by "slow" to allow the young horse ( a 4 yr old WB that had been under saddle for 3 months) to keep a rhythum and balance. THis is a filly we trained for the owner last year:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c4MV7q6KPms

And a 3 coming 4 yr old that we are working on relaxing the back and accepting the bit, she has a tendency to get short strided and quick:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UurTw0tZy84

Except that neither of those horses shows the slightest bit of impulsion. Neither are remotely tracking up either. I would NEVER ride a youngster that slowly. They need to learn forward from the beginning. Yes, they may lose balance from time to time, but better to lose balance once in a while and have them forward than to have backed off the aids and not even tracking up.

sid
Jan. 20, 2011, 10:05 PM
It can take a horse quite a while to develop "throughness" and impulsion...that is the holy grail no?

I'd rather have a horse a bit quick to the aids than one the sucks back and gets behind the leg. The "behind the leg" horse may keep its rhythm, but it isn't going anywhere with energy..;)

One should never sacrifice rhythm, but also not sacrifice forward. That's the rub. And that's what makes making a dressage so challenging (and sometimes frustrating), no? :lol:

Riding different horses is a very good thing. It can hone your skills, and make better riders who learn that all horses are not created equal in their ability.

A good trainer understands that and does the be best for the student and the given horse.

Remember, "ground-covering" does not equal true engagement from back to front. Maybe that's what this instructor that you like was trying to make you feel..that rhythm can/should be maintained at any speed?

Just a thought.

alibi_18
Jan. 20, 2011, 10:31 PM
I know of a trainer who does such slowing down horses and loose reins thing...Did your trainer talked about the impulsion coming mainly from the forehands? Science of the Motion type of things....

I think like Coppers Mom, too much reading...not enough real stuff...
I would stick to your 2/3rd level skills and go with your guts!

sid
Jan. 20, 2011, 10:43 PM
Ditto. If you already know "feel" and what you should be getting and 2nd and 3rd, trust you prior training and instincts.

But just don't expect that every horse you get on will be like your own. I rode the same horse (my beloved mare) for about 10 years, before I hopped on another.

Best thing I ever did to become a better and more educated rider. ;)

Getting out of one's comfort zone can be good, provided your instructor knows what the heck they are doing. :lol:

halfhALTER
Jan. 20, 2011, 10:44 PM
I know of a trainer who does such slowing down horses and loose reins thing...Did your trainer talked about the impulsion coming mainly from the forehands? Science of the Motion type of things....

I think like Coppers Mom, too much reading...not enough real stuff...
I would stick to your 2/3rd level skills and go with your guts!

Hahaha, she did not, but I know exactly where you're going with that. It appears you, Copper's Mom, and I are all on the same page here with regards to the origins of her methods of training.


Ditto. If you already know "feel" and what you should be getting and 2nd and 3rd, trust you prior training and instincts.

But just don't expect that every horse you get on will be like your own. I rode the same horse (my beloved mare) for about 10 years, before I hopped on another.

Best thing I ever did to become a better and more educated rider. ;)

Getting out of one's comfort zone can be good, provided your instructor knows what the heck they are doing. :lol:

Oh, definitely! That's actually the reason I decided to take a lesson--to get on another horse! I used to ride a bunch of different horses about a year ago. Lots of cool owners where I was boarding who didn't have time to ride as often as they liked. It was great! Unfortunately, this experience wasn't quite as fun or fulfilling.

EqTrainer
Jan. 20, 2011, 10:54 PM
Hmm, well it sounds a bit suspect with the forehand thing and whatnot :lol: but at least you got to hear some different things and now know that there is more than one way to skin this particular cat. So you did learn something after all for your $ :lol: I find in most cases that ends up being true... Someone once said that you learn something from everyone, even if it's what NOT to do...

Bats79
Jan. 21, 2011, 05:46 AM
Interesting.

An instructor asks you to do something you are not familiar with on a horse you are not familiar with and you aren't sure that it is the best thing.

Because you say the horse didn't seem forward enough to you just about everyone says that the instructor is a quack.

Of course they must be off track - they didn't yell forvard, forvard, forvard at you.

Some horses need to be slowed right back to give them a chance to think, to relax and just roll along in a rhythm. They aren't going to be ruined if you lose impulsion on occasion. Just so long as when you ask for it you get it - and the slower rhythm helps the horse pick up a better cadence.

I know plenty of horses and riders that have been hurried forward and pretty much prevented from getting anywhere because they never learned about how slow a tempo the horse could relax in. It doesn't kill them!

alicen
Jan. 21, 2011, 06:56 AM
Caddym, Thank you for providing that video. Spot on. Brief and dark as it was, an excellent example of how slowing tempo and balancing induces the horse to develope spring and lift....and to be the initiator of that way of going. How did the lesson proceed after you'd warmed up?

caddym
Jan. 21, 2011, 07:36 AM
Caddym, Thank you for providing that video. Spot on. Brief and dark as it was, an excellent example of how slowing tempo and balancing induces the horse to develope spring and lift....and to be the initiator of that way of going. How did the lesson proceed after you'd warmed up?

I don't want to highjack this thread. This was filmed with my flip camera which was just sitting un-manned next to Lendon. I am going to be able to take lessons with Lendon every other week! My second leson wil be this coming Tuesday. Lendon likes her students to keep journals, so I edited the really hard work and am keeping a journal at "barnbynotes.com". My journal was chosen to be public, so it will be available in about a week.

http://www.youtube.com/my_videos

Thats my you tube channel. With Caddymaster, we went on to do some really hard work with the changes and eventually leading to one time changes. With my other horse Tia, we worked through her tendency to be late behind in the left to right change and played aroung with her first piaffe steps

Edgewood
Jan. 21, 2011, 11:52 AM
Some horses need to be slowed right back to give them a chance to think, to relax and just roll along in a rhythm. They aren't going to be ruined if you lose impulsion on occasion. Just so long as when you ask for it you get it - and the slower rhythm helps the horse pick up a better cadence.


Yes, I agree with this comment. I had my young 3 year old mare with a very experienced young horse trainer who also shows at the FEI levels. I noticed that he rode my mare in a slower rhythm than another 3 year old he had in training. We actually were discussing the different ride between the 2 three year olds. He said it was because, for my mare, the slower tempo allowed her to stay relaxed over her back. The other 3 year old needed a more forward ride to stay over his back.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cwo6AqmBVKw

Two months after this video was taken, the trainer could push for a much bigger, more elastic, trot and canter and the mare (by that time) understood how to keep the connection over the back and produced very nice lengthenings.

halfhALTER
Jan. 21, 2011, 12:24 PM
Interesting.

An instructor asks you to do something you are not familiar with on a horse you are not familiar with and you aren't sure that it is the best thing.

Because you say the horse didn't seem forward enough to you just about everyone says that the instructor is a quack.

Of course they must be off track - they didn't yell forvard, forvard, forvard at you.

It's not that the horse didn't feel "forward enough," it's that the gait was so slow and stunted that it felt like it was approaching an impure rhythm.

I've watched the videos others have posted of horses going "slow" and I think I'm starting to realize why instructors are frequently telling me to move out more...the horses in those videos don't seem slow to me! They have rhythm and pace along with impulsion and a spring from the hind end. They may have been going at a slower pace, but there was still enough energy from the back to put into the bridle.

I appreciate the comments and I'm enjoying the videos where horses are being slowed down to focus on rhythm and balance. I do think I experienced a different scenario here, but the discussion has been informative nonetheless!


So you did learn something after all for your $ :lol: I find in most cases that ends up being true... Someone once said that you learn something from everyone, even if it's what NOT to do...

hahaha, very true.

mickeydoodle
Jan. 21, 2011, 01:11 PM
Except that neither of those horses shows the slightest bit of impulsion. Neither are remotely tracking up either. I would NEVER ride a youngster that slowly. They need to learn forward from the beginning. Yes, they may lose balance from time to time, but better to lose balance once in a while and have them forward than to have backed off the aids and not even tracking up.


agree totally

mickeydoodle
Jan. 21, 2011, 01:13 PM
Yes, I agree with this comment. I had my young 3 year old mare with a very experienced young horse trainer who also shows at the FEI levels. I noticed that he rode my mare in a slower rhythm than another 3 year old he had in training. We actually were discussing the different ride between the 2 three year olds. He said it was because, for my mare, the slower tempo allowed her to stay relaxed over her back. The other 3 year old needed a more forward ride to stay over his back.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cwo6AqmBVKw

Two months after this video was taken, the trainer could push for a much bigger, more elastic, trot and canter and the mare (by that time) understood how to keep the connection over the back and produced very nice lengthenings.


agree with this also, the mare in this video however, is totally a different type from the other videos (the other two really needed more forward to move through the body)

RougeEmpire
Jan. 21, 2011, 01:16 PM
Out of curiosity what breed of horse was it? Was this your first lesson with this trainer, have you ridden any other of her school horses? But more importantly in your posts you say NOTHING about the horses conformations, and honestly this kind of disturbes me. Dressage (or ANY riding for that matter) is NOT about getting movements or making it look how you want it to. ITs about riding the INDIVIDUAL horse to its utmost potential.

So if for instance this individual horse was lets say a "stock type" horse, or was built to travel with a SHORT stride and very slow "natrual rythem" and pace then that how the animal SHOULD be ridden. You seem so concerned with how YOU think the horse should go in such a fashion that I would almost think you think ALL "dressage" horses should move in the ONE way you seem to think. Every horse must be ridden to the tune of its OWN INDIVIDUAL conformation and bio-mechanical predispostion. It is perfectly correct for a horse built to have a short stride, a slow rythem and gentle pace to travel in such a way even when doing "dressage" , because that is how the animal is built.

It seems to me that THIS trainer was having you ride THAT horse the way thatTHAT horse (not any your horse or another horse) needs to be ridden to be ridden CORRECLTY for THAT horse. Even when doing dressage.

Nojacketrequired
Jan. 21, 2011, 01:18 PM
Caddy...exactly what my trainer has me do with my mare. Strangely, outdoors we don't have the problem, but indoors, I have to work on this all the time. He also stresses using the body to slow the horse and keep the rhythm.


Some horses need to be slowed right back to give them a chance to think, to relax and just roll along in a rhythm. They aren't going to be ruined if you lose impulsion on occasion. Just so long as when you ask for it you get it - and the slower rhythm helps the horse pick up a better cadence.

I agree with this. As my mare gets into a rhthym she's comfortable with and can relax into then we can push for more activity/lift/impulsion, what have you.

NJR

alibi_18
Jan. 21, 2011, 02:05 PM
Out of curiosity what breed of horse was it? Was this your first lesson with this trainer, have you ridden any other of her school horses? But more importantly in your posts you say NOTHING about the horses conformations, and honestly this kind of disturbes me. Dressage (or ANY riding for that matter) is NOT about getting movements or making it look how you want it to. ITs about riding the INDIVIDUAL horse to its utmost potential.

So if for instance this individual horse was lets say a "stock type" horse, or was built to travel with a SHORT stride and very slow "natrual rythem" and pace then that how the animal SHOULD be ridden. You seem so concerned with how YOU think the horse should go in such a fashion that I would almost think you think ALL "dressage" horses should move in the ONE way you seem to think. Every horse must be ridden to the tune of its OWN INDIVIDUAL conformation and bio-mechanical predispostion. It is perfectly correct for a horse built to have a short stride, a slow rythem and gentle pace to travel in such a way even when doing "dressage" , because that is how the animal is built.

It seems to me that THIS trainer was having you ride THAT horse the way thatTHAT horse (not any your horse or another horse) needs to be ridden to be ridden CORRECLTY for THAT horse. Even when doing dressage.


euh...nope.

Then, a inverted neck and hollowed back horse should be ridden inverted with its back hollow because they are built like that?!?! Doesn't make ANY sense.

As for me, 'Natural' rythm is BS. There is no such thing as 'Natural' when a horse is being ridden...
Yes you have to go with the horse's level of training and not pushing off limits of its capacity/conformation up to a certain point but there is a limit to it as well...if ever you want to 'improve' your horse, its abilities and capabilities...

One has to move correctly and work a bit out of its comfort zone in order to muscle up, get up the levels and achieve something...

Or you can always trot around your backyard, bouncing on your slow paced horse's back and have fun! :D

mg
Jan. 21, 2011, 02:13 PM
Out of curiosity what breed of horse was it? Was this your first lesson with this trainer, have you ridden any other of her school horses? But more importantly in your posts you say NOTHING about the horses conformations, and honestly this kind of disturbes me. Dressage (or ANY riding for that matter) is NOT about getting movements or making it look how you want it to. ITs about riding the INDIVIDUAL horse to its utmost potential.

So if for instance this individual horse was lets say a "stock type" horse, or was built to travel with a SHORT stride and very slow "natrual rythem" and pace then that how the animal SHOULD be ridden. You seem so concerned with how YOU think the horse should go in such a fashion that I would almost think you think ALL "dressage" horses should move in the ONE way you seem to think. Every horse must be ridden to the tune of its OWN INDIVIDUAL conformation and bio-mechanical predispostion. It is perfectly correct for a horse built to have a short stride, a slow rythem and gentle pace to travel in such a way even when doing "dressage" , because that is how the animal is built.

It seems to me that THIS trainer was having you ride THAT horse the way thatTHAT horse (not any your horse or another horse) needs to be ridden to be ridden CORRECLTY for THAT horse. Even when doing dressage.

This posts disturbs me far more than the OP not giving a detailed explanation of the horse's conformation.

Petstorejunkie
Jan. 21, 2011, 07:08 PM
Balance is what matters. She may have been trying to teach you something specific (which is indeed the point of lessoning) or perhaps that particular horse responds best to being ridden in that tempo. Overall, I agree that a lot - and I mean, a lot! - of people think riding a horse over tempo and running it into the bridle is correct - it is not. It can be used as a tool but should not be your every day way of going, sadly, it often is used in place of skill and the horses suffer for it.

Agreed. I'd rather have them too slow then falling on their face. I've also found judges would prefer to see my horse loose through his back than running off his feet and tight.