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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar. 27, 2001
    Between the Medina River and a hay field

    Default Share 5.....

    From your personal experiences - Share 5 things that you have learned (no matter what your level is....) that you wish you would have know then, what you know now....

    I think this could be an interesting thread.....

    Mine are -

    1) Never let a horse learn a lazy walk - its hard as hell to fix again

    2) Dont get lazy in the halts. Each halt, no matter what Im doing needs to be a show halt to get the REAL show halt perfected over time.

    3) A correct stretchy trot does not mean you throw the horse away on the forhand and throw the reins away

    4) The sitting trot should not be hard to ride. When a horse is correctly muscled and 100% up and coming through, its soft and swingy.

    5) There is a difference of ring riding patterns and conditioning riding and both are huge parts of each other.
    Home of Puerto D'Azur - 1998 NA 100 Day Test Champion
    "Charcter is much easier kept than recovered"

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul. 21, 2003
    St Aug, Fla


    Oooo this will be interesting.

    1 - Just b/c your butt doesnt leave the saddle does not mean you are SITTING the canter. Learning how to NOT pump at the canter is SUPER hard!

    2 - FORWARD is not a speed.

    3 - Just b/c their nose is on the vertical does not mean they are on the bit.

    4 - Just b/c it is a downward transition doesnt mean you pull down.

    5 - Riding is supposed to be fun.

    Member of the ILMD[FN]HP Clique, The Florida Clique, OMGiH I loff my mares, and the Bareback Riders clique!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan. 31, 2003


    1) Your seat can always get better. No matter how well you ride today, you can ride better tomorrow if you keep working on it.

    2) No matter how well you ride today, some horse will come along tomorrow and make you feel very humble.

    3) When addressing number 2, see number 1.

    4) What you think is forward today, will not seem forward tomorrow. Or maybe that's next year, but if you want to improve your idea of forward will change over time.

    5) Your horse needs to be paying attention to you ALL THE TIME. ALL THE TIME. Yes, ALL THE TIME.

    Gotta add one more:

    6) Your reflexes and responses have to get faster or the horses never will. Read a GP test and you'll see why this is necessary.
    "Kindness is free" ~ Eurofoal
    The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar. 15, 2007
    (throw dart at map) NC!



    1. If your horse has a passage-y trot or talent for piaffe, don't wait until I2 to play with it. In other words, the levels aren't necessarily linear, but the training is... make sense?

    2. For 60 minutes out of 24 hours, the horse can learn to work. In other words, don't under-employ your horse. She/he should march along, be sharp to the aids, should work uphill a little bit more each day, etc. Expect less and you'll get less (this is you as well as your horse).

    3. Every day your horse is sound/uninjured is a precious day.

    4. Chances are great that if you're the owner/rider, you know your horse. Sometimes, better than your trainer/shoer/veterinarian. Trust your gut.

    5. You feel uphill movement in your crotch. Sounds crude! But uphill isn't a raised head, it's the feeling of raised withers, making your legs feel like they've moved slightly back on your horse's barrel as his croup lowers. In this kind of frame, it feels like the horse can do anything at any moment with only the slightest of rider aids. It's heaven.

    5a. It's OK to love on your horse while keeping the boundaries! They get it.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct. 3, 2002
    it's not the edge of the earth, but you can see it from here


    1) In the early days, a through back feels like the horse is about to poop.

    2) there is a fine line between exhuberant excellence and a humped back about to buck

    3) A tiny horse feels 17h tall when he is through.

    4) It doesn't get easier. SOME things become easier, but more become harder. The higher you go, the more you expect from yourself and your horse. The reactions have to be quicker, the aids less, and faster, the balance, better... I truly thought it was supposed to get easier, and it doesn't, it gets harder.

    5) More forward. Even in collection.
    InnisFailte Pinto Sporthorses & Coloured Cobs

    Bits are like cats, what's one more? (Petstorejunkie)

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep. 21, 2007
    SF Bay Area


    1) Green on Green isn't the best color combination for fast progress. Really.

    2) You can take lessons diligitently for years with reputable instructors without getting anywhere. When the instructions works for you, you make noticeable progress.

    3) The first day you can feel if your canter is good enough to ask for a change is MUCH more important than the day you do your first change.

    4) Fear happens. Create safe situations to deal with it. No need to play hero or throw the baby out with the bathwater.

    5) Each day is a new ride. Just because it was a "breakthrough" yesterday, doesn't mean you can take it from there today. Dressage keeps you friggin' HUMBLE!
    Last edited by InsideLeg2OutsideRein; May. 20, 2008 at 02:22 PM.
    "Reite dein Pferd vorwärts und richte es gerade.” Gustav Steinbrecht

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep. 13, 2002


    When in doubt-forward

    Ride from half halt to half halt not movement to movement

    Cool down is just as important as warmup

    Don't drill

    Wear the right underwear
    Where's the glamour? You promised me glamour!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan. 4, 2000


    get on, go 250%, because you never know what will happen tomorrow.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug. 25, 2005


    1. Have a plan. A day plan, a week plan.

    2. Don't always expect to follow that plan

    3 Don't be afraid to back off one day, when things are not going right, and find something else to do, something easy.

    4 Consistancy is important. Patient persistence pays off.

    5 Remember the movements are not the end, in and of themselves, but structural building blocks for the next level. So if you want that canter transition to happen, perfect that S/I, Having problems with half pass, work that H/I. Trouble with changes, back to quiet transitions.

    And a sixth ,really hard one as we age. We have to stay fit, fit, fit.
    Some riders change their horse, they change their saddle, they change their teacher; they never change themselves.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep. 18, 2005
    New Jersey


    1. For YOUR learning, an 18 y.o. schoolmaster is a better purchase than a nice 3 y.o. with potential.

    2. Find the best instructor that you can and take as many lessons as possible on a horse that is trained to a higher level than you currently ride. (Doesn't have to be a GP schoolmaster. If you ride at TL, lesson on a 1st or 2nd lvl horse if possible.)

    3. In front of the leg = responsiveness to your subtle leg aids. If your horse does not respond to subtle leg aids, he is not in front of your leg.

    4. You have nothing if you do not have forward. (caveat: forward does not mean fast)

    5. Having a trainer keep your horse "tuned up"/on the right track will make it easier for you to learn and your horse will understand his job better. You will also learn by watching how your trainer works with your horse. Take regular lessons and have your trainer hop onto your horse frequently.

    Ditto a lot of what has already been said!

  11. #11
    Join Date
    May. 5, 2006


    1. Lessons are worth every penny when the instructor is a good match

    2. Gripping with your knees shuts the door on forward movement

    3. You need to ride every stride

    4. Movement happens from back to front, and that is how a horse should be

    5. Rein aids are the last on the list

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Dec. 1, 2005


    1. Always put your horse first. They do the most work.
    2. Rewards go a long way.
    3. If a horse is pushing down on you with his head...get his shoulders up...or anything attempted will be awful or a complete failure.
    4. Disobedience/unwillingness isn't always mental...rule out all possibility of physical discomfort.
    5. can't think of number 5
    Begin as you mean to continue.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    May. 10, 2003
    central CA


    'Following' the motion does not just mean being loose (and looking it)

    Forward first!

    Quiet, quick corrections are better (kinder) than light consistant commands

    The right trainer for you AND your horse is key (if you have an off breed horse, sometimes a trainer with experience in off breeds helps)

    A BNT may not be more helpful than the person down the street.
    Don't toy with the dragon, for you are crunchy and good with ketchup!

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Apr. 8, 2004
    The Great, uh, Green (?!?!) North!


    1. A good trainer isn't necessarily the one that pushes you the hardest or makes you buy the most expensive horse. A good trainer knows you and your horse, and pushes you to do better than the day before.

    2. A good trainer also knows when this is just not the "day", and when to quit when you're ahead. And the difference between "leaving it for another day" and "wimping out".

    3. An good trainer knows the difference between teaching and handholding, and teaches their students to think and to be able work through issues themselves.

    4. As an adult amatuer with a FT job, there are days when an after work amble up a trail is better for you and the horse than trying to train.

    5. The more you learn, the more you realize you don't know.
    "Adulthood? You're playing with ponies. That is, like, every 9 year old girl's dream. Adulthood?? You're rocking the HELL out of grade 6, girl."

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jan. 31, 2007


    thanks STF for starting this thread. this is GREAT! Here's a few more to add:

    1) Every sound footfall is a gift. Enjoy every minute... even when its not going so well.

    2) maintenance and care is as important as training

    3) The horse has to "live" in front of the leg

    4) So many resistances evaporate as the horse gets stronger. Horse and rider fitness is a big part of success

    5) An average horse can become an awesome dance partner with good training.

    plus so many that have already been mentioned. Keep 'em coming!

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Dec. 20, 2006

    Default I like this thread... good to see others thoughts

    1. Never be jealous of what others have, be proud of what you yourself have

    2. You can never learn too much

    3. Listen to your instructors. What's the point in paying them good money if you are going to disregard their advice

    4. If you think something is wrong, it probably is, so STOP!

    5. If you aim for mediocrity you will only achieve mediocrity.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jan. 20, 2004


    1. Always have forward. When in doubt, check the forward.
    2. If there is a problem, back to basics. Stop. go. steer.
    3. Ride all transitions uphill. Ride downward transitions uphill.
    4. Feel what the hind legs are doing. They will come into your hand when the horse is through.
    5. Trust your gut, love your horse, always learn.

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Feb. 21, 2007


    Great thread!

    1. Don't let a grazing animal make decisions for you.
    2. Just as nagging your spouse is ineffective, so is nagging your horse. State what you want clearly.
    3. You're training your horse at every moment, whether you're thinking about it or not.
    4. There's no substitute for riding on the longe.
    5. It's not okay to use your whip in anger or frustration.

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Dec. 19, 2007
    Aldie, VA


    Hrm, I might have to add mine a bit at a time:

    1. Your elbows belong to you and your wrists belong to the horse
    2. If you are exhausted and your legs feel like Jello, KEEP GOING! It is when we are tired that our bodies actually relax and learn. **
    3. If you feel like you are leaning back, you are probably nice and straight.
    4. Pick your battles. You don't always have to make a point. This especially goes for any Iberian type horses.
    5. Pick your trainer for what they know and what they can teach, not for how well known they are. Oftentimes the best trainers can be found working in a different discipline -- ask questions, learn WHAT they know and don't overlook them!

    ** paraphrased from a post on a list.
    Last edited by Roan; May. 22, 2008 at 10:03 PM.
    Mad Mare™ Studio
    Custom Swarovski®, Czech glass and gemstone browbands in Circlet, Diadem and Tiara styles. Matching stock pins, bracelets and belts.

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Aug. 26, 2003
    Joliette, QC, Canada


    My 5 things I have learned are;

    1- Riding is not a question of strenght, but more relaxation in the movement, for both horse and rider;

    2- Have confidence in the effeciency of my aids;

    3- Be patient for results with young horses...forgive;

    4- Mercy my horses for what they have done with me;

    Finally I don't the 5th one...But I am sure it will come soon !

    Fighting ovarian cancer ! 2013 huge turnaround as I am winning the battle !..

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