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  1. #1
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    Default Aids for Leg Yeild vs Shoulder in

    What is the difference between the aids for leg yeild and shoulder in? You bump inside leg inside rein in both. You are pushing the horse to the outside rein using the inside aids correct?



  2. #2
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    Good question, I look forward to the responses. We're still teaching shoulder-in while Pi has leg yield down pat, so as I think about it the main differences to me are my cues are much stronger on shoulder-in, and my shoulders are turned in on shoulder-in while they remain more straight on the leg yield. However, I haven't had a lesson which touched on shoulder-in in about six months, so I'll have to check with my trainer this weekend to make sure I'm asking for it right.



  3. #3
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    Leg yield, is inside leg at girth with inside seat bone both driving into a "catching" outside aid to keep the horse parallel to the long side. Outside leg used to keep horse going forward, as well.

    Shoulder-in, is inside leg to wrap horse bending around it. Softening inside rein to keep bend, ouside rein connected to keep bend and secondary aid to keep angle. Outside knee brings shoulder in and outside leg keeps horse bending around inside and haunches from falling out. Shoulder in and haunches in are same aids, just different amounts of pressure with different aids.



  4. #4
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    While some folk do not agree, I think of leg yield as the beginning of teaching shoulder-in, and as you change from leg yield to the straight line again, is really the beginning of teaching half-pass to some degree.

    The idea of leg yield is to have the horse connected to the reins just as if you would be riding along the wall. However, though the horse is bent slightly to the same degree, the thing that is different is the diagonal that points the direction of the motion. It means that your pelvic balance must change the direction of the motion. Most horses can easily do leg yield, provided that the rider chances the balance correctly.

    To do leg-yield, it is about the rider's inner groin pushing the horse sideways toward its outside shoulder. With a hollow right horse, it will feel almost as if the rider must put the inside leg slightly more rearward. But, the rider's inside hipbone must point the direction of the motion. So if you are traveling to the right, the left hipbone point to the horse's right shoulder slightly..not to the extreme, but just enough that you can properly get that groin area pushing into the inside of the saddle. With that same hollow right horse,as you go to leg-yield left, besides pushing the horse with a slightly rotated inside groin, you will also need to step down more into your left stirrup which will help lift the horse's barrel up into a better position for your inner, right leg to push it over.

    The rhythm needs to be to the count of 1,2,1,2, but the greater push should be on the inside...rather like push, release, push, release

    Now your aids will be very similar for the shoulder-in. The thing that is different about the shoulder-in, is that the degree of bend is different...much greater, and this requires that your torso bends to a greater degree as well. We say that the leg yield is ridden as if it were a 20 meter circle bend. With shoulder-in, the horse's torso should be bent equal to the 10 meter circle. You cannot do this without collection, which means that the horse has to be fairly straight within the context of the motion. The outside shoulder must lift and the inside shoulder must stay down, but not fall. The hindquarters must track the shoulders fairly well, and the inside hind hip must be able to sink into the ground to a greater degree, while the outside hip must stay somewhat elevated. We call this a greater ability to step under with the inside hind leg.

    Both of these exercises are about the gymnastic developement of the horse's outside diagonal toward collection, just as the turn on the forehand is the beginning stage of these other two exercises. It is about blocking the outside shoulder, and better tracking of the inside hind.



  5. #5
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    Wonderful description Angel - you really explained it well. I found myself nodding along as I was reading it, because just because I can *do* it doesn't mean I can explain it. It's a gift to be able to explain as well as you did!



  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by angel View Post
    We say that the leg yield is ridden as if it were a 20 meter circle bend. With shoulder-in, the horse's torso should be bent equal to the 10 meter circle.
    Thanks for a great descriptions! I have a question though: I was always taught that the amount of bend for the 20m circle is shoulder fore, and that leg yield should really be straight (parallel to the wall). Is this not true?



  7. #7
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    Not is you want a good score for your tests!

    By the way, what do you think is the correct bend for shoulder fore??? What bend should you use to ride the wall in trot or walk? What does this achieve?



  8. #8
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    Of course the aids are the same for lateral work. All the aids for all the lateral works are the same. If they weren't, no horse could ever learn them. Not only that, but the aids are exactly the same as for a circle, too.

    Leg yield is a beginning exercise that many do not consider to be 'lateral work'.

    It is only a part of lateral work, because the horse is not bending, nose to tail, in a smooth bend. Otherwise, the ideas are quite the same as lateral work.

    It is preparation for lateral work, and in that way, similar.

    The answer to the question 'what''s the difference between shoulder in aids and leg yield aids' is -

    "Not a whole lot, but..."

    When you do a leg yield, you are not bending your horse's spine. His spine stays straight, and your outside rein keeps him straight. You use your leg at the girth (never further back) and 'push' the horse sideways while he is straight. There is a very slight bend to the same side as your 'pushing' leg, mostly, your outside rein is keeping your horse's neck straight.

    When you shoulder in, you get much more of a feeling of positioning and bringing your horse's shoulders to the inside, off the track, and it may seem like you're using a lot of outside rein. This time, the outside rein is chiefly the one that brings the shoulder in. Your hands both come to the inside, and at first, it's a little bit of a struggle for the rider and horse.

    BUT....a shoulder in is really exactly the same as a circle, except you 'bring' the shoulders more, and press with your inside leg (again at the girth) MORE, to keep the horse going on a straight line.

    You should be 'bringing' the shoulders onto the curved line of the circle when you do a circle, largely, it will feel at first, with the outside rein, so that there's supposed to be a very natural feeling that it's just like circling, when you go and try to do your shoulder ins. If the idea of 'bringing the shoulders' is foreign and difficult in the shoulder in, it proves you haven't been doing your circles properly.

    MOST people try to do lateral work and leg yields by leaning, over using the inside rein, etc.

    DON'T PRETZEL YOURSELF!

    Think about a circle.

    Once you know how to do a circle correctly, you know how to do all the lateral work. It's just a matter of adding a little more of this or a little more of that. The aids are the same.

    THe aids never change. They always do the same things.



  9. #9
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    Know what has really helped me? Walk them out on the ground, and move fluidly between shoulder for, shoulder in, haunches in, haunches out, half pass, etc. Really think about the position of your core, how your core has to carry your shoulders and arms and what your position must be. It is so easy to become over cranked or off balance! When you can do this on the ground, it is so much easier to do it in the saddle, and you will feel how subtle the movements need to be.
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by CapitolDesign View Post
    Leg yield, is inside leg at girth with inside seat bone both driving into a "catching" outside aid to keep the horse parallel to the long side. Outside leg used to keep horse going forward, as well.

    Shoulder-in, is inside leg to wrap horse bending around it. Softening inside rein to keep bend, ouside rein connected to keep bend and secondary aid to keep angle. Outside knee brings shoulder in and outside leg keeps horse bending around inside and haunches from falling out. Shoulder in and haunches in are same aids, just different amounts of pressure with different aids.
    Excellent response.

    If you wonder if you really have it, give the inside rein. Nothing, Nothing should change! The bend will remain the same, the horse will still continue on his way, bent around the inside leg. Your eyes must look where you are going. Your shoulders must stay with angle of horses shoulders.
    Some riders change their horse, they change their saddle, they change their teacher; they never change themselves.



  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by DressageGeek "Ribbon Ho" View Post
    Know what has really helped me? Walk them out on the ground, and move fluidly between shoulder for, shoulder in, haunches in, haunches out, half pass, etc. Really think about the position of your core, how your core has to carry your shoulders and arms and what your position must be. It is so easy to become over cranked or off balance! When you can do this on the ground, it is so much easier to do it in the saddle, and you will feel how subtle the movements need to be.
    I haven't read the whole thread, but just wanted to stop here and say, what an idea, and thanks for that suggestion. Very good. Kind of thing my trainer would pick right up on. We do alot of ground work before riding. I love the idea of doing these movements on my own, on the ground.

    Also, doing these movements on the ground, from the ground, with the horse. Stepping across from behind, etc. with the horse really can increase my sense of communion with the horse's responses to me. If that makes any sense, but that's what my trainer does, we do the movements from the ground before we get on the horse. It shows me how the horse moves. It shows me to the horse. He watches me intently, he listens and follows my body language, with the tap of the dressage whip to identify my "space". It is an invaluable piece of training technique, and I would also like to walk the movements entirely on my own, as dressagegeek suggests. I'd like to hear more.

    Great thread
    Last edited by AnotherRound; Mar. 18, 2009 at 12:45 AM.
    Airborne? Oh. Yes, he can take a joke. Once. After that, the joke's on you.



  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by GallopGal View Post
    What is the difference between the aids for leg yeild and shoulder in? You bump inside leg inside rein in both. You are pushing the horse to the outside rein using the inside aids correct?
    Not correct.

    Shoulder in has bend. Leg Yield doesn't have bend. In shoulder in only one pair of legs is crossing. In the Leg Yield both pairs of legs are crossing. There is such thing as Leg Yield along the wall, but it is not the same as shoulder in along the wall.

    In shoulder in you give the aids to bend thru the ribcage and as a secondary effect of that bend, the front legs cross.

    In Leg Yield, you give the aids for legs to cross.

    Every horse can cross its legs. But it’s only well schooled horses that can bend uniformly thru the ribcage. Shoulder in is a movement of the Hight School Dressage showcasing that bend.

    Aids are quite different and the skill level is quite different as well.

    If in shoulder in both pairs of legs cross the score can not be more than "4" since there is no bend.



  13. #13
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    But I'm learning both at the same time.
    Airborne? Oh. Yes, he can take a joke. Once. After that, the joke's on you.



  14. #14
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    So, besides the bend, the shoulder in does not see the hind legs cross, but the front legs, with the bend?

    The leg yield sees the straight spine of the horse with both legs crossing, the angle of spine to track is what, 20 degrees? 40 degrees? Is ther an ideal angle of horse to track on the leg yield? Are some angles better than others? Is it just that both legs cross, and the angle doesn't matter??

    In the Shoulder in, the horse is bent, the hind legs track straight, the front legs cross. This seems like a stressful movement for a horse, no?

    which has more stress to the horse, the shoulder in or the leg yield?

    Sorry didn't mean to hijack. So the point of the thread is, where is the rider? With the leg yield, the shoulders are straight with the horse's shoulders, the hip moves aside into the movement. the horse moves down the track at an angle, lateral legs crossing together, head and neck not bent, much support from the inside rein, inside leg keeping him from falling in at the shoulder, outside rein maintaining his straight positions, outside leg at the girth moving him to the side.

    With the shoulder in, the shoulders follow the bend just with the shoulders of the horse, my hips push ahead straight and keep the hind moving straight. The horse bends around my inner leg which supports him on the bend. The outer leg and rein move him on ahed and support him from moving out of the bend.

    Is it fair to say that the rider's shoulders follow the horse's shoulders? Or no.
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  15. #15
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    Default Both at once would be confusing for man and beast IMO

    I agree with other posters who emphasize the difference in the horse's body during the two movements.

    I was taught that the leg yield is easier for the horse than the shoulder fore, and the shoulder fore easier than the shoulder in. The latter have to do with degrees of bend.

    Since the aids seem similar to some (but the difference nice explained by angel), I think it might fry someone's brain to learn both movements at once.

    I may be wrong or old school, but I can't imagine teaching the shoulder in from the leg yield. How would you move the shoulders to a new track, ask for bend without hand riding?

    I was taught to teach horses shoulder fore and shoulder in from a larger or smaller circle. You establish the bend you want on the circle, complete with the inside hind leg nicely engaged, and then keep the bend but ask the horse to move off the circle on a tangent. That involves more inside leg and relaxing the tension in your outside arm a bit.

    Just my idea.



  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by DressageGeek "Ribbon Ho" View Post
    Know what has really helped me? Walk them out on the ground, and move fluidly between shoulder for, shoulder in, haunches in, haunches out, half pass, etc. Really think about the position of your core, how your core has to carry your shoulders and arms and what your position must be. It is so easy to become over cranked or off balance! When you can do this on the ground, it is so much easier to do it in the saddle, and you will feel how subtle the movements need to be.
    I never thought of practicing like this without a horse! I'll have to give this a try at home, with a stick horse (just for the neighbors). I do find it very helpful to practice the movements mounted at a walk, using mirrors to confirm (or deny) the correctness.



  17. #17
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    Along the idea of moving off the circle into a tangent, what is the difference between a shoulder fore and a shoulder in?
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  18. #18
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    Originally posted by AnotherRound:

    Is it fair to say that the rider's shoulders follow the horse's shoulders? Or no.

    Yes, this should be true



  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by BaroquePony View Post
    Yes, this should be true
    OK. So will the horse's shoulders follow the riders?? Because on the ground, I have experienced the horse following my body language. And it seems to me that that is ideal communion.
    Airborne? Oh. Yes, he can take a joke. Once. After that, the joke's on you.



  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by DressageGeek "Ribbon Ho" View Post
    Know what has really helped me? Walk them out on the ground, and move fluidly between shoulder for, shoulder in, haunches in, haunches out, half pass, etc. Really think about the position of your core, how your core has to carry your shoulders and arms and what your position must be. It is so easy to become over cranked or off balance! When you can do this on the ground, it is so much easier to do it in the saddle, and you will feel how subtle the movements need to be.
    Excellent exercises but not for someome sorting out he difference between LY, and SI!

    Of course I tend to think of them, at that point more for the horse, particularly at the trot..!
    Some riders change their horse, they change their saddle, they change their teacher; they never change themselves.



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