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Cielo Azure
May. 4, 2012, 07:35 AM
Competitive dressage and equitation! What has happening to good riding? Now, I am writing about all levels but specifically high level competition. First, there is the Weird posture -leaning back- pelvis forward, often with reins up past the belly button, near their diaphram (often the reins are in the crank and yank position). That and people riding with their pelvic bone driving so hard, it looks like they are bonking the horse or trying to get off on the horse! Then there is the extended calf flapping for an extended trot! It looks like baby ducklings trying to flying. What has happened to competitive dressage? Is it time for the test scores to actually have a category or two for... Equitation!

BaroquePony
May. 4, 2012, 07:59 AM
It takes a different set of muscles to *crank and spank* than it does to learn to ride the horse without interferring with him/her and then to ask for the horse to actually come on the aids, as in the old school method.

One appraoch ends up with the rider looking like he/she is at war with the horse, and the other looks like the rider becomes one with the horse.

The last approach actually takes knowledge, strength, and finesse .... and many hours in the saddle developing all of it.

Petstorejunkie
May. 4, 2012, 08:02 AM
There is "rider position" scored but I agree, riding has gotten pretty ugly.
And it can be beyond the harsh ones. I know Steffan Peters is well loved, and I appreciate that he is kind to his horses, but the man collapses his inside of his torso in nearly every photograph I've seen! ...Like inside shoulder is usually at least 4" lower than the outside. I'm truly shocked that no one talks about it.

2tempe
May. 4, 2012, 08:02 AM
I believe the collective marks for Rider Position and Seat and Rider correct and effective use of aids are meant to address this type of thing.
And while I'm way too old to participate, there is Dressage Equitation for the juniors/YRs of the world.
We will be having a clinic this summer for just this topic at the barn where I board.

Cielo Azure
May. 4, 2012, 08:43 AM
Watch this riding:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tKbqokuTzh8&feature=results_main&playnext=1&list=PL33F82C1FF5247777

I could comment but I think watching footage from the "greats" from year's past should be enough to convince most that something needs to change.

BaroquePony
May. 4, 2012, 09:07 AM
Now that's a Free Walk!

MassageLady
May. 4, 2012, 10:13 AM
Please go here and read-things are changing!
In Dressage Forum
Dr.Nicholsons i-book on Gait Analysis/transitions

paulaedwina
May. 4, 2012, 12:28 PM
It takes a different set of muscles to *crank and spank* than it does to learn to ride the horse without interferring with him/her and then to ask for the horse to actually come on the aids, as in the old school method.

One appraoch ends up with the rider looking like he/she is at war with the horse, and the other looks like the rider becomes one with the horse.

The last approach actually takes knowledge, strength, and finesse .... and many hours in the saddle developing all of it.

Hear hear and amen. Especially that last paragraph: it takes knowledge, strength, finesse, and many hours in the saddle. Everybody doesn't want to put in that kind of time. No worries; you don't want to put in the time we can find the tools to make you look like you know what you're doing.

Paula

Velvet
May. 4, 2012, 01:07 PM
There is "rider position" scored but I agree, riding has gotten pretty ugly.
And it can be beyond the harsh ones. I know Steffan Peters is well loved, and I appreciate that he is kind to his horses, but the man collapses his inside of his torso in nearly every photograph I've seen! ...Like inside shoulder is usually at least 4" lower than the outside. I'm truly shocked that no one talks about it.

No one talks about it because those who know understand that to have a "perfect" position is to force people into a false frame and to make them "look" good while the effect on the horse is garbage.

The man is a kind and INCREDIBLY effective rider. His horses work VERY well for him. Why the heck would you think he'd want to change? Just to please some bizarre asthetic that you have in your mind?

Man, talk about people with nothing to do. Go out and ride and figure out what it takes to be a sympathetic rider that horses actually LOVE having on their back. Then come back and show me that your body type (doesn't matter what type or if you've had any injuries in the past) looks like some trumped up image of perfection that you have in your mind right now.

Oh, wait, we'll all be dead and buried when that happens if you're going to try and match the hours Steffen, and some of the other top riders, have put in the saddle. :rolleyes:

Talk about insipid. You're looking for something that makes YOU happy rather than what makes the horses happy and look spectacular. The art of dressage is to be a rider that can show of their horse to the best of it's abilities (and improve their natural talents) and can also create a happy athlete. That is why the score for the rider is in the collectives. :rolleyes:

Seriously, equitation is for the hunter ring where they perch on trained horses, schooled into submission by their coaches minutes before they go in the ring.

Good riding can look differently based on different horse and rider combinations. Infinite diversity in infinite combinations! Someone with a shorter waist sits differently. Someone with longer legs does too. Harmony with the horse can look very different from rider to rider.

You guys really need to go out and study some anatomy as well as what dressage is really supposed to be about...

Of course that's JMO. :lol:

dwblover
May. 4, 2012, 01:25 PM
There is a HUGE difference between sitting on a horse and looking pretty vs. being EFFECTIVE! I really hate when people nitpick positions when the horse looks fabulous. I doubt ANY of Steffen Peters horses are complaining about his "collapsed core" or other nonsense. It is just way too easy for everyone to sit back while doing a whole lot of nothing and judge what others are doing. Honestly the whole classical vs. modern dressage thing is getting SO tired!!!
Perhaps I am on edge because I had a chat with a lady the other day who started riding dressage 2 WEEKS ago. She went to a rated show and was telling me how a lot of riders had their calves way too far back, etc. etc. OMG are you serious?!!! Can we not just find a way to enjoy dressage again?

Equibrit
May. 4, 2012, 01:35 PM
Competitive dressage and equitation! What has happening to good riding? Now, I am writing about all levels but specifically high level competition. First, there is the Weird posture -leaning back- pelvis forward, often with reins up past the belly button, near their diaphram (often the reins are in the crank and yank position). That and people riding with their pelvic bone driving so hard, it looks like they are bonking the horse or trying to get off on the horse! Then there is the extended calf flapping for an extended trot! It looks like baby ducklings trying to flying. What has happened to competitive dressage? Is it time for the test scores to actually have a category or two for... Equitation!


They do - remember the "collectives"?
http://www.fei.org/sites/default/files/file/OFFICIALS%20%26%20ORGANISERS/ORGANISERS/DRESSAGE/Dressage%20Tests/Olympic%20short%20GPS_final_0.pdf
Is there some point in posting the above ?

Velvet
May. 4, 2012, 01:41 PM
They do - remember the "collectives"?
Is there some point in posting the above ?

My guess is that they are bored and trolling.

mp
May. 4, 2012, 01:42 PM
My guess is that they are bored and trolling.

No, I think they're sincere -- deluded, but sincere.

mvp
May. 4, 2012, 01:45 PM
No one talks about it because those who know understand that to have a "perfect" position is to force people into a false frame and to make them "look" good while the effect on the horse is garbage.

The man is a kind and INCREDIBLY effective rider. His horses work VERY well for him. Why the heck would you think he'd want to change? Just to please some bizarre asthetic that you have in your mind?

Man, talk about people with nothing to do. Go out and ride and figure out what it takes to be a sympathetic rider that horses actually LOVE having on their back. Then come back and show me that your body type (doesn't matter what type or if you've had any injuries in the past) looks like some trumped up image of perfection that you have in your mind right now.

Oh, wait, we'll all be dead and buried when that happens if you're going to try and match the hours Steffen, and some of the other top riders, have put in the saddle. :rolleyes:

Talk about insipid. You're looking for something that makes YOU happy rather than what makes the horses happy and look spectacular. The art of dressage is to be a rider that can show of their horse to the best of it's abilities (and improve their natural talents) and can also create a happy athlete. That is why the score for the rider is in the collectives. :rolleyes:

Seriously, equitation is for the hunter ring where they perch on trained horses, schooled into submission by their coaches minutes before they go in the ring.

Good riding can look differently based on different horse and rider combinations. Infinite diversity in infinite combinations! Someone with a shorter waist sits differently. Someone with longer legs does too. Harmony with the horse can look very different from rider to rider.

You guys really need to go out and study some anatomy as well as what dressage is really supposed to be about...

Of course that's JMO. :lol:

I'm a hunter rider who is a short desk jockey who thinks a hell of a lot about anatomy and biomechanics. I hope you're wrong about what equitation means, where it comes from (or is limited to) and just how lame those who care about it are.

I'll try to redeem "us."

As I see it, the pubic bone "down" comes from the fact that we have bred larger moving horses. Also, our population is getting heavier and less fit. Perhaps even the Tall German Olympic Guys riding Big Front End Movement need this public bone down position.

As a shortie, I need that more than most. That makes me think about the biomechanics involved. See, the problem in sitting on a big trot is to absorb the horse's movement with my core. I think of a point in my rib cage as still and my body below that as swinging as if it were a pendulum.

The "size" or the horse's gaits determines how far forward or back my whole pelvis needs to swing or rotate from that still point above.

The only way to get a big arc for the bottom of my pelvis on the horse's back is to "not waste" half of it. I could do that by having my "neutral" position be tilted back toward my jeans pockets. But then I lose half of the range of motion and strength for smooth sitting that the front of my body-- my core and the much, much stronger side-- provides.

If, on the other hand, I put my pubic bone right down there on the pommel, I get back all the advantages of my core muscles.

I don't think I have explained this well, but if you have experimented with your position on horseback, I think you'll get it.

As to the flapping lower legs? You non-H/J people are on your own.

Mind you, I "get" the philosophical purpose: The rider just needs his thighs to stay on. He wants to open his hip, ride with his whole leg pointing forward which means that if he's yelled at about a lose lower leg, he'll most likely skip the open hips and turn his toes out. He wants the lower leg to be an aid and sometimes decidedly "off" the horse so that he can produce a clear signal with it.

Droopy shoulders? I don't see it a lot. But I have short little T. Rex arms, so I'm very, very handicapped by this sorry arms, and likely to ride round shouldered in order to get the job done. If I could just skip to the upper levels and a very uphill horse, all would be good. Maybe other folks are riding with high hands for the same reason?

rizzodm
May. 4, 2012, 01:58 PM
Perhaps even the Tall German Olympic Guys riding Big Front End Movement need this public bone down position.


:lol:

I think some saddles force your pubic bone down. I tried a bunch of Custom saddles on Monday and went halfway around the arena in one that did this. I was not going to even attempt trotting in this saddle:eek:

Equibrit
May. 4, 2012, 02:10 PM
My guess is that OP has little or no experience of competitive or upper level dressage. One time on a very large moving, powerful, competitive partner might change her perspective.

Velvet
May. 4, 2012, 02:11 PM
No, I think they're sincere -- deluded, but sincere.

Huh. You could be right. The OP, I'm not so sure fits your description, but the others? Maybe.

Seriously, all this talk just shows me that there are very few who work to develop tact and FEEL. Yes, your position comes into play, but it is altered a bit for every body type and what it takes for your type to be sympathetic to each horse you ride (making adjustments for their type and conformation).

If they aren't getting this now, they might in 20-30 years, if they have that many more years left in their body to ride. Which might be especially difficult if they spend too many worrying about how they look rather than how they ride and communicate with their horse so the effect is harmonious and fluid.

Plastic surgery is probably the path most are going to start taking so they can have the "look." Shorten certain muscles here, break a few bones and reset them to fit the "look" there...

*shudder* *gag*

mvp
May. 4, 2012, 02:17 PM
^^

Sign me up for the first bilateral arm transplant. Just four more inches, that's all I ask.

ideayoda
May. 4, 2012, 02:32 PM
There is a reason for equitation guidelines in ALL types of riding (ear/shoulder/hip/back of heel in alignment, straight line from elbow to horses mouth, upper arms vertical). It is to allow the rider to stay in balance, and be apply to more easily apply the aids in a routined way. And ideally the rider is neutral (level in the pelvis) unless it is needed to pulse a hh. No, not everyone is tall and lanky, and long trunks can actually give mover leveraged is wanted. But this type of equitation give hh a specific purpose. Without such work on timing and equitation the horses lose their balance more easily.

Why are some riders steadily btv? Because the point of gravity is more forward, and to keep the horse going and stay into the saddle the pelvis is steadily tilted. Not good for the lumbar vertebrae. But as it is often quoted but those that ride this way, hh are not necessary and certainly are not ridden off the seat but by tempo control (different ones). A different way from the traditional.

HydroPHILE
May. 4, 2012, 02:47 PM
My guess is that they are bored and trolling.

If you're talking about Cielo Azure, I quite literally just laughed out loud.

netg
May. 6, 2012, 01:14 PM
^^

Sign me up for the first bilateral arm transplant. Just four more inches, that's all I ask.

I'd like a couple more in my waist (length-wise, width is already plenty :lol: ) and arms. :D


I actually thought the OP was funny, because I remember in the 80s having the impression that nearly all dressage riders we saw on tv or in person were hunched over, sloppy floppy messes. As far as correct position, I think we see much better things out there now - even if I weren't taking into account how that position affects the horse's way of going rather than some textbook definition which is a good starting point.
As far as sympathetic to the horses, kind and useful - I didn't know enough then to have an opinion on that. But I suspect there were riders who would have been dubbed good and evil by the COTH collective wisdom then, too.

SnicklefritzG
May. 6, 2012, 01:39 PM
Regarding Steffen Peters' position, or anyone else's for that matter. If a rider has some peculiarities to their equitation, yet they can get the job done and help their horse perform beautifully in the process, then who cares?

There are plenty of folks who may have to perform their activities a certain way in order to compensate for some other issue elsewhere. Reminds me of how people used to complain about Glenn Cunngham's "unconventional" running position during warmups. Head and nose up in the air. Never mind the fact that he was so badly injured in a fire as a child that he almost had to have his legs amputated. He refused and later became one of the best american milers and set multiple world records. He ran with an unconventional style because he physically had to in order to perform at his best.

So if someone has a shoulder that tilts a certain way all the time or legs that are in an unusual position, who cares if the horse doesn't mind and responds appropriately.

Lost_at_C
May. 6, 2012, 01:49 PM
I actually thought the OP was funny, because I remember in the 80s having the impression that nearly all dressage riders we saw on tv or in person were hunched over, sloppy floppy messes. As far as correct position, I think we see much better things out there now - even if I weren't taking into account how that position affects the horse's way of going rather than some textbook definition which is a good starting point.
As far as sympathetic to the horses, kind and useful - I didn't know enough then to have an opinion on that. But I suspect there were riders who would have been dubbed good and evil by the COTH collective wisdom then, too.

Absolutely. I was there in the 80s and most of the riding was far from correct or pretty. The collective wisdom then was that if you wanted to ride well, you should avoid watching top level dressage for fear of unconsciously picking up bad habits!

That darned video of Klimke and Ahlerich sure does have a lot to answer for... while I love it as much as anyone, it's been used to substantiate so many claims and agendas it must have superpowers. Maybe there were a few exceptional riders in the 80s, but in general we see more good riders now than we did then... most likely the result of good equitation training and much more knowledge of biomechanics.