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View Full Version : Newly Discovered 1950s Film of the SRS and Alois Podhajsky



Mike Matson
Mar. 1, 2011, 01:10 PM
15 minutes of viewing pleasure! Enjoy! :)

http://pegasustv.org/archives/player_0012.html

Eclectic Horseman
Mar. 1, 2011, 04:09 PM
Thanks for posting this!

spirithorse
Mar. 1, 2011, 04:38 PM
It is magnificent. Compare the SRS today to the SRS then and one can see the incorrectness that has now developed.

Please notice the frames of the horses, seems they meet the requirements of Article 401 and the subsequent articles.

Velvet
Mar. 1, 2011, 05:26 PM
Got to love how supple the horses look, and how much crossing they have in the half pass. Really fun to watch.

(Dang, I'm feeding another of Mike's posts!)

stolensilver
Mar. 1, 2011, 05:47 PM
Lovely video, thankyou for sharing. I really rate the SRS, they are excellent. They aren't perfect though, there are plenty of technical errors on show in this video most markedly lack of bend in the half passes and braced under necks. It doesn't detract from the overall spectacle but it does fuel my irritation when they are held up as being the pinnacle of dressage. They are good but so are the riders who take part in modern competitions.

mbm
Mar. 1, 2011, 11:19 PM
love it! supple, expressive, harmonious - whats not to love ? as i watched i was thinking that it would be *so* cool to teach the pony the in hand stuff... how cool would it be to do CPs in hand with a pony?

wish i could down load it!

suzy
Mar. 2, 2011, 09:34 AM
It is magnificent. Compare the SRS today to the SRS then and one can see the incorrectness that has now developed.



Really? When did you last see the Lipizzans perform?

I think Stolensilver and I were watching the same video. ;) The Lipizzans are lovely as are the riders, but there is much lacking as SS already noted.

merrygoround
Mar. 2, 2011, 10:34 AM
Thank you!

As for the naysayers! :sigh:. Where is the thumbs down button?

It is difficult enough to correctly ride the movements, without being required to have the split second timing to smoothly meld into a formation.

suzy
Mar. 2, 2011, 10:58 AM
Merrygoround, I am going to borrow SS's quote because it hits the nail on the head:

"It doesn't detract from the overall spectacle but it does fuel my irritation when they are held up as being the pinnacle of dressage."

None of us are saying that the Lipizzans are not wonderful and a pleasure to watch. But, not all of their work is correct (e.g. half passes lacking bend and cross over). Of course, some brilliance and correctness will be lost when riding in formation. That is to be expected. But does that mean that we should turn a blind eye to movements that are not performed optimally?

I am willing to give leeway to horses being ridden in formation for being less than perfect in every movement. But, it does not mean that I am going to hold them up as the pinnacle of dressage--this would be misleading to people new to dressage. As far as formation riding, though, I can't think of any group I've seen that is better. And, the in-hand work is riveting!

spirithorse
Mar. 2, 2011, 02:09 PM
As for the naysayers! :sigh:. Where is the thumbs down button?

It is difficult enough to correctly ride the movements, without being required to have the split second timing to smoothly meld into a formation.

Interesting that the naysayers nitpick the performance rather than observe the frame of the horses and the softness of the rider's hands.

A team performance is incredibly difficult to achieve accuracy and this film compared to today's SRS definitely shows a far better performance.

My point of comparing the Col's. SRS to the SRS today, is that then the Col. required poll high nose in front of the vertical.....today SRS is overbent behind the vertical and dependent upon the curb.

The poll high nose in front of the vertical requirement is because that position has the horse engaging the muscles that spread over the withers, which allows the complete engagement of the shoulders.

belambi
Mar. 2, 2011, 04:14 PM
pesronally, I think some suppleness would turn this from an OK demonstraition of dressage, to a quite good demo.

It is a shame, because to me these horses do no look 'gymnasticised" which is the purpose of training.

alicen
Mar. 2, 2011, 04:51 PM
If they were more "gymnasticized" they'd need a bigger riding hall.

ise@ssl
Mar. 2, 2011, 05:01 PM
Very different from today. This film shows horses that are powerful, well trained but RELAXED. Almost no tension. Also as others have noted the riders are maintaining the POLL at the highest point - something not often seen today. Also the riders seem to just blend into the picture, no excessive hand grabbing or spur digging.

This film is a treasure.

alicen
Mar. 2, 2011, 05:04 PM
The poll high nose in front of the vertical requirement is because that position has the horse engaging the muscles that spread over the withers, which allows the complete engagement of the shoulders.

Like Totilas?

TouchstoneAcres
Mar. 2, 2011, 09:24 PM
No not like Totilias but with the front still matching the back.

alibi_18
Mar. 2, 2011, 10:31 PM
For what I can see, this video is a bit on slow motion. Thus exacerbating the 'relaxation' effect I guess... Seem quite the same as what is being done today by the SRS. Good show riding. They are keeping the traditions. Lippizaners are great!

No one said they were the pinnacle of modern dressage. Because this is not 'modern' riding. It is tradition show riding!

And they are not regulated by the FEI rules...

spirithorse
Mar. 2, 2011, 10:52 PM
This post represents a grand example of what is wrong with dressage today. The presentations are so incorrect that some folks cannot recognize what dressage should look like according to the rules......


For what I can see, this video is a bit on slow motion. Thus exacerbating the 'relaxation' effect I guess...

On slow motion? Egads. Exacerbating the relaxation? The horses are supposed to be relaxed in dressage.

Seem quite the same as what is being done today by the SRS. Good show riding.

Show riding? Egads. What is show riding? Totilas represents the epitemy of 'show riding' of show dressage.

No one said they were the pinnacle of modern dressage. Because this is not 'modern' riding.

Thankfully this video is not the incorrect display of 'modern' dressage.

It is tradition show riding!

Show riding? Classical dressage is now show riding?

And they are not regulated by the FEI rules...

The are not regulated by FEI but 'DID' adhere to the descriptions contained in the rules.

alibi_18
Mar. 3, 2011, 07:54 AM
This post represents a grand example of what is wrong with dressage today. The presentations are so incorrect that some folks cannot recognize what dressage should look like according to the rules......

[I]

Some prefer to use chains on their horse and ride with deep hollow back and pretend that because their horse's nose is in front of the vertical, it represent the best 'frame' ever, even if the neck is completely inverted, with no hind legs engagement.

Keep up the good work SH!

alicen
Mar. 3, 2011, 09:23 AM
sh wrote : "Show riding? Classical dressage is now show riding?"

The SRS, from its English website, does "performances".

About the "American Friends" foundation

The American Friends of the Spanish Riding School is a newly formed non-profit foundation dedicated to supporting the renowned Lipizzaners of Vienna and their 430 year-old tradition of classical dressage.

In 2001, the Spanish Riding School and the Piber Federal Stud were privatized as a result of the Austrian entrance into the European Union. Consequently, the governmental financial support has decreased to only a fraction of what is needed by the School. The American Friends of the SRS foundation is responding by forming new programs to support the School and enabling a method by which the School can receive support through tax-deductible donations from individuals and businesses.

This foundation is officially endorsed by the Spanish Riding School, which is located in Vienna, Austria.

American Friends of the SRS
Lexington, Kentucky USA Cell Phone +1 (859) 983-4858
Office Phone +1 (859) 223-2010
Anne Buchanan, President
Kimberly E. Brown, Vice President

Send us an email (anne@horsecapitalproductions.com)

http://www.facebook.com/pages/American-Friends-of-the-Spanish-Riding-School/122376559940

spirithorse
Mar. 3, 2011, 10:19 AM
Alicen
Tell you what, I will be on the rode in May.
How about I come by where your ride and we film the two of us riding dressage and put it up on Youtube?

alicen
Mar. 3, 2011, 10:25 AM
Have you donated to the SRS?

suzy
Mar. 3, 2011, 11:35 AM
Alicen,

Move. Leave no forwarding address. ;)

alicen
Mar. 3, 2011, 11:50 AM
Alicen
Tell you what, I will be on the rode in May.
How about I come by where your ride and we film the two of us riding dressage and put it up on Youtube?

A pas de deux? Sorry, I do NOT do online dating.

suzy
Mar. 3, 2011, 01:00 PM
:lol:

fiona
Mar. 3, 2011, 03:11 PM
No one expects the Spanish Inquisition.....

Mike Matson
Mar. 3, 2011, 10:21 PM
Karl Mikolka was sent this video link. He says it was filmed in 1958 and he is the third rider in the quadrille.

horsefaerie
Mar. 3, 2011, 11:15 PM
Call me a romantic.

Sigh. Look at the riders. So soft, so harmonious and so tactful.

Discipline without force.

What is not to like?

Eclectic Horseman
Mar. 4, 2011, 10:13 AM
Karl Mikolka was sent this video link. He says it was filmed in 1958 and he is the third rider in the quadrille.


Cool, I will have to look again!

ThreeFigs
Mar. 5, 2011, 11:10 AM
Aw, go ahead and take SH up on the offer, Alicen. We haven't seen a video of his "horsemanship" in a while. You'll clean his clock.

THEN move and leave no forwarding address. :lol:

Coyoteco
Mar. 5, 2011, 12:40 PM
I enjoyed watching it. Thanks!

In the mid 1960's, the "Royal Lipizzan Stallions" or "Famous Lipizzan Stallions" came to my small home town. Does anyone know what group that would have been?

alicen
Mar. 5, 2011, 12:47 PM
Sorry, Beasmom, I haven't yet recovered from the trauma of last year's move.

I feel confident, however, that sh will prevail with his USEF bitless bridle grievance and we will soon be treated with videos of his and his student's competition successes.

ThreeFigs
Mar. 5, 2011, 10:20 PM
Coyoteco, that was probably the group based in Florida. NOT the gen-u-wine article, but they put on a nice show for the kiddies and it is probably the only way some folks ever see a Lippizzan or anything "like" dressage.

I've sat through it twice now and found it disappointing, but the folks sitting around me were mostly enthralled. So the "Famous/Royal Lippizans" have their place...

They're still better than SH...

spirithorse
Mar. 5, 2011, 10:37 PM
They're still better than SH...

Come on Beasmom, PLEASE accept my challenge! Let someone provide us with dressage horses unknown to us and then let the filming begin. :D

The current SRS do not out 'perform' the SRS under Col. Podhajsky!

As for those 'famous' Lippizans....well I have had the opportunity to sit with dressage folks at one of their 'shows' and they were NOT impressed.

Dressage competition is a 'performance': the act of or proces of performing or carrying out...the execution...a person's achievement under test conditions...a public exhibition...

alibi_18
Mar. 5, 2011, 10:43 PM
SH, you could do a Kür on Aretha Franklin's hit : "Chain of fools"

Chain, chain, chain...!!! :D

meupatdoes
Mar. 6, 2011, 08:46 AM
Come on Beasmom, PLEASE accept my challenge! Let someone provide us with dressage horses unknown to us and then let the filming begin. :D

This is the strangest challenge I have heard of, especially coming from an alleged dressage rider.

Isn't dressage supposed to be about improving and developing a horse over time? As such, why are you issuing a challenge wherein you would ride somebody else's work product?

Surely you would prefer to be represented by your own work product with your own horses, no? Or do you feel for some reason that would put you at a disadvantage.

It would probably be wise for you to attempt to get some remotely decent footage for once (we all have bad pictures, but some of us manage to sprinkle in some good ones as well) of yourself on your own horses before you go trying to prove something on somebody else's work.

ThreeFigs
Mar. 6, 2011, 01:16 PM
SH, the people sitting around me at the "famous" Lipps show that I went to were NOT dressage people, or even horse folks, per se. Therefore, they were much more easily impressed. I was NOT impressed. Try to read for comprehension.

I know enough about you and your "theories" to NEVER allow you anywhere near my horse. Wreck your own animals. My gelding's back is fixed and working fine now, TYVM, and there's nothing you can "prove" to me that's worth a d*mn. Nothing that's worth putting his health and welfare in danger.

What Meupatdoes said. Produce decent footage of your own riding & training. You have no credibility here, based on the film and stills we've already seen. Before you question why I have no footage of my own up, as you have in the past -- it's because I don't feel a need to prove anything to you or anyone else. I value the opinions of the teachers, clinicians, judges and friends I ride in front of. I'm not peddling a "method" or "philosophy" other than good riding and training.

LarkspurCO
Mar. 6, 2011, 01:55 PM
SH, the people sitting around me at the "famous" Lipps show that I went to were NOT dressage people, or even horse folks, per se. Therefore, they were much more easily impressed. I was NOT impressed. Try to read for comprehension.

I know enough about you and your "theories" to NEVER allow you anywhere near my horse. Wreck your own animals. My gelding's back is fixed and working fine now, TYVM, and there's nothing you can "prove" to me that's worth a d*mn. Nothing that's worth putting his health and welfare in danger.

What Meupatdoes said. Produce decent footage of your own riding & training. You have no credibility here, based on the film and stills we've already seen. Before you question why I have no footage of my own up, as you have in the past -- it's because I don't feel a need to prove anything to you or anyone else. I value the opinions of the teachers, clinicians, judges and friends I ride in front of. I'm not peddling a "method" or "philosophy" other than good riding and training.

Wait a minute -- there is film?

alicen
Mar. 6, 2011, 02:50 PM
Wait a minute -- there is film?

There was a film which was less than critically acclaimed and therefore removed.

There's a plug for his bitless bridle here at 2:26. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sTK7syzIwqM

tabula rashah
Mar. 6, 2011, 07:19 PM
Thank you for the link. It was wonderful to watch

horseriddergirl21
Mar. 6, 2011, 10:03 PM
I am brand new to dressage, but why is their mouth foaming?

horseriddergirl21
Mar. 6, 2011, 10:21 PM
I am brand new to dressage, but why is their mouth foaming?

Speedy Alice
Mar. 12, 2011, 01:11 PM
Foam is usually an indication that the horse is relaxed. And the stallions are given sugar as a reward, so that makes their foam sometimes look a little "meringue'y". :) Copious amounts of foam can indicate stress/anxiety. Listen also for the gentle snorting/huffing sounds that the stallions make - that's an indication of relaxaion.

fooler
Mar. 12, 2011, 03:04 PM
What impressed me was this was filmed a relatively short time after WWII. Consider Europe had been through 2 massive, destructive wars from 1914 - 1945. Most of Europe was destroyed during the WWII. Podhajsky and others had managed to save breeding stock by 'surrendering' them to Patton, a friend and probably one of the few US Generals to appreciate the SRS.

So here they are, barely back from the brink of extinction - both human and equine - carrying on the 300+ year tradition of the SRS.

Yeah the bend and cross-over in the half-passes could have been better. Their passing of each other was not always at the exact spot. They were not in complete unison when removing/replacing their 'hats'.

What I loved is the 'slack' curb rein with soft, steady contact on the snaffle. Plus the soft almost relaxed way of going of the stallions. We saw the SRS in 2005, both show and pre-show. As they stated - their aim is for perfection, yet always reward the horse's honest attempts.

Thanks for finding this and other films.

Bronte
Mar. 12, 2011, 06:30 PM
I really enjoyed watching this video and I really enjoy the history and tradition around the SRS.

What strikes me today, is that we really should not be comparing then and now because they are totally different and it is comparing apples to oranges.

In no other sport that I can think of, (and yes, if you compete today you are in a sport, not an art), do we hold up an ideal of 60 years ago (or 2500 years ago), and make comparisons. It is just not realistic. Breeding changes, equipment changes and ideas (fashions) change.

I think it is time that we started to celebrate the good in both the Classical (old) and the Competitive (modern) styles and stop attempting to decide which is best.

Folks, they are totally different. Both great! Lucky us, we get to pick which suits our interests! I love all horses, but am not fond of a number of equestrian disciplines. But I respect the right of the folks that are passionate about their disciplines to participate and enjoy their choices.

Do you think we can do that in 'dressage' some time soon?

alg0181
Mar. 12, 2011, 07:07 PM
How did I miss this thread?

You know, Spirithorse and Alicen, you could just film yourselves individually. I'll even volunteer to edit your videos into one, for all of our viewing enjoyment.

I just really, really really want to see Spirithorse ride. Pretty please?

alicen
Mar. 12, 2011, 07:14 PM
You do it, alg0181, I've already seen a video of his riding.

allison finch
Mar. 14, 2011, 10:55 PM
You can't compare this video with the modern touring "White Stallions". These touring companies are not the true SRS but circus-like performers.

What I enjoy is seeing the old standard of horses being on the vertical or a little ahead of the vertical (considered quite correct, still). At no time did you see any horses behind the vertical. Considered, especially at the time, a vice.

As a child I started riding with Capt Heyer, who rode with the SRS before WWII. He was fanatical about horses going behind the vertical.

He would not be happy today......

Couture TB
Mar. 14, 2011, 11:00 PM
Well I will critisize when I can ride as well as those riders and produce as many amazing animals as they have.

Thank you for the post! I have been a fan of all of Podhajsky's works, written and visual for many years.

DoubleTwistedWire
Mar. 15, 2011, 01:13 AM
You can't compare this video with the modern touring "White Stallions". These touring companies are not the true SRS but circus-like performers.



While those companies are not the SRS, they do go on tour, almost annually:
http://www.srs.at/en/repertoire/on-tour/tours-since-1925/
I saw them when they were stateside in 2005, and it was amazing to see in person.

Thank you for sharing this video, it was lovely to watch.

ivy62
Mar. 15, 2011, 05:10 PM
I was lucky enough to have seen the real SRS twice. both times they were breath taking....sure i guess you can say this was better or not but let's see some modern dressage horse do the airs above the ground. and I absolutely love the ground work....amazing. it is truly like a ballet performance. How many modern horses work in a group like this....I am new to dressgae formally but not to being inspired by those who came before me. the horses seem relaxed and enjoying themselves. The riders are soft with their contact...and I love that they are barefoot! (flamesuit on) people who know nothing of horses always enjoy their performances not true of a modern day dressage test....
just my honest opinion..