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  1. #321
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    Aw, come on!!

    You-all are talking like this thread will disappear. Can't we keep playing?



  2. #322
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    Well here's a quote from the end of ANOTHER HORSEMANSHIP, in which JRC gives a list of "your possible enemies:"

    Lack in spirit of observation. Beaudant (1863-1948), the most prestigious of the the Baucherists "second manner," would advocate, "observe, reflect." If the theory says one way, and your horse reacts another way, the theory is wrong and your horse is right. Perhaps, on second thought, you will find that the theory was somewhat right, but needed to be interpreted--adapted--to your horse.



  3. #323
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    The horse is always correct. He hasn't read a single book.



  4. #324
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    From Claes Adam Ehrengranat: "A rider with a reflective mind spares the horse much trouble and does not credit himself for imagined merits."

    Ehrengranat was the headmaster of Flyinge, the Swedish school. He was trained in the classic French style, and was a veterinarian.



  5. #325
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    OK. Here we go.

    Everything that goes well? Credit your horse.

    Everything that doesn't? YOU need to change something.

    There were days I came out to ride and asked for SI and the horse got fussy. Since I ask with my body and my mind there is always the possibility that my body is somewhere else. I stop and do a body check. If it isn't me, my horse is hurting somewhere.

    I do not believe my horses in the barn plotting to defy me and my "authority", I don't think they stay up nights figuring out how to thwart our progress in dressage.

    I read posts where the rider NEVER thinks their own body might be kinking up for any number of reasons, it is always their horse.

    So, before embarking on a voyage in this direction, ask yourself if you want all of that responsibility.

    I enjoy it, but it is not everyone's cup of tea.
    “Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one.”
    ? Albert Einstein



  6. #326
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    If a rider rides with blinkers on and book in hand, locked into theory and next steps and philosophy...well... things are bound to be dissatisfying.

    I am so glad my horses are at home and I can tinker and play without worrying about what the neighbors think a little of this, a sprinkle of that, and we're happy.

    If riding makes either the horse or the rider or both unhappy, maybe something is wrong. In whatever language or system, something is wrong.



  7. #327
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    RE: If riding makes either the horse or the rider or both unhappy, maybe something is wrong. In whatever language or system, something is wrong.

    I'm learning, Katarine, I'm learning.

    Paula
    He is total garbage! Quick! Hide him on my trailer (Petstorejunkie).



  8. #328
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    Quote Originally Posted by horsefaerie View Post
    OK. Here we go.

    Everything that goes well? Credit your horse.

    Everything that doesn't? YOU need to change something.

    There were days I came out to ride and asked for SI and the horse got fussy. Since I ask with my body and my mind there is always the possibility that my body is somewhere else. I stop and do a body check. If it isn't me, my horse is hurting somewhere.

    I do not believe my horses in the barn plotting to defy me and my "authority", I don't think they stay up nights figuring out how to thwart our progress in dressage.

    I read posts where the rider NEVER thinks their own body might be kinking up for any number of reasons, it is always their horse.

    So, before embarking on a voyage in this direction, ask yourself if you want all of that responsibility.

    I enjoy it, but it is not everyone's cup of tea.
    I also agree that horses don’t stay up late plotting and that they are honest.

    However, that does not mean they will give the right answer 100% of the time if asked correctly. They are not pre-loaded with software

    They need to learn, step by step what we want from our aids... they make mistakes and they have a learning curve. If the rider thinks each time something doesn’t go 100% correct "oh, I made a mistake" they will learn to doubt and have no faith in their training.

    I know this to be true because this is what happened to me. I began to think that if things didn't go right then I was at fault and that it was my riding - so I lost faith that I could even ride. Instead of working thru whatever challenges there were I fretted that it was my seat or that I wasn’t asking correctly etc.... I wasted a very good horse and 10 years of my life to this kind of POV.... I just didn’t take into consideration the learning curve of the horse.

    I think what makes a really good trainer is one that knows the difference between learning curve and rider error and knows that if something doesn't work if you ask this way - ask another or allow the horse to think a bit and try again. That it may NOT be rider error per se but horse learning curve....

    Plus, while horses are extremely generous, they do have days where they would rather sit around eating and may not want to play. So perhaps in as much as the rider should be able to work them thru this it would be rider error, but still - horses are not machines - they have a voice and use it

    Once I started letting go of this kind of idea I was able to continue in my own training - instead of being stuck and actually going backwards in my own work. I thank my trainer for not smacking me upside the head countless times and being patient while I worked this all out.

    This is also why I feel that the end result is not the path to it and you really do need to see the progression and how a horse learns to fully get theory etc. no matter what school you are from.



  9. #329
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    MBM many of us have done this. Started somewhere and then was made to doubt everything we were doing by the overwhelming crowd of dressage riders that think you have to pick things down to the nub.

    Walk before you run? Yes. But run at some point before you die!

    I got to where I second guessed everything Ive ever known because it wasnt dressage. Instead of playing up my strengths (which were still there from other disciplines), I was made to think I had to erase it all.

    Riding through is something you are taught in most disciplines and not bringing that with you if youve ridden as long as I had was a HUGE mistake.

    I needed to retrain my aids and hands, yes, but not my ability to guess the horses next move or how to get them to work for me.

    Finding a bridge between the two was better and I feel like Ive done that now, but after some circling of the wagons lol
    ~~Member of the TB's Rule Clique ~~
    http://www.off-breed-dressage.blogspot.com/



  10. #330
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    Aug. 25, 2005
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    Wink

    "I read posts where the rider NEVER thinks their own body might be kinking up for any number of reasons, it is always their horse."-Quote -horsefaerie

    Too true! Some people only have "bad hair days". Me, I have "bad body days".
    Some riders change their horse, they change their saddle, they change their teacher; they never change themselves.



  11. #331
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    Quote Originally Posted by NOMIOMI1 View Post
    MBM many of us have done this. Started somewhere and then was made to doubt everything we were doing by the overwhelming crowd of dressage riders that think you have to pick things down to the nub.

    Walk before you run? Yes. But run at some point before you die!

    I got to where I second guessed everything Ive ever known because it wasnt dressage. Instead of playing up my strengths (which were still there from other disciplines), I was made to think I had to erase it all.

    Riding through is something you are taught in most disciplines and not bringing that with you if youve ridden as long as I had was a HUGE mistake.

    I needed to retrain my aids and hands, yes, but not my ability to guess the horses next move or how to get them to work for me.

    Finding a bridge between the two was better and I feel like Ive done that now, but after some circling of the wagons lol
    It is a challenge!

    I've found taking lessons with a biomechanics instructor has REALLY helped me, because I automatically just follow her instructions in my ear and end up in the right position. My horse usually does exactly what I want at that point. But it has given me a checklist of items, so if my horse isn't behaving I go through my body checklist and 99% of the time it's me. However, it has helped me identify the 1% when it isn't. My trainer has improved from watching my biomechanics lessons as well - her instruction is more horse oriented, but when I'm trotting and he's starting to drop behind my leg she makes a reference to my core if it's my fault and I can instantly use the correct ab muscles and he seems to magically develop about 50% more energy in the next stride, no kick, no whip, no spurs involved. In my case the hunter type seat which is ingrained into my being becomes a restrictive seat - and on a very sensitive horse that means he starts sucking back. Using my core to *allow* seems to generate energy, no driving seat or ugly kicking involved. Funny, that, given I'd say my training is more German-based than French-based. I wouldn't say it's strictly any school, though... really, it's more horse-based.

    I have been loving this discussion because I think learning the reasoning behind everything really helps understand what should and shouldn't work for a horse. I was originally taught by an old cowboy of the same type as Buck, and he taught release as a reward. He said that if you correct a horse for doing something wrong, you have to do it every single time. If you correct a horse for doing something right, they learn after one or two times, and will keep doing it even if they don't get rewarded every time.

    What I don't see anyone discussing is relaxation. And in my (amateur, inexpert) training, developing relaxation is the first step. For my baroque type, that meant focusing on the balance and slowing things down. Only when she is balanced and looser in her back can I ask her for more forward. For my naturally uphill TB, that meant forward because the movement helped him loosen up and relax his back.
    My horse is a dressage diva so I don't have to be.

    Quote Originally Posted by katarine
    If you have a fat gay horse that likes Parelli, you're really screwed



  12. #332
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    "The horse is NEVER wrong." Ray Hunt



  13. #333
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    "What I don't see anyone discussing is relaxation."

    Relaxation happens when the horse has "let go" of his defenses. Even on the German Riding Scale it is right there in the beginning because they knew too, that without relaxation nothing much can be accomplished. The horse needs to "turn loose" to you and how to do that? Through the groundwork and counted walk exercises; mental preparation before real work can begin.

    And here we can go back to the SRS and la Gueriniere, which the SRS bases its training program upon, and revisit the art of counting steps in the "stirrup stepping" exercises and counting the strides on a 20 meter circle etc. at the trot. The outcome being a balanced, thus relaxed horse. Tom Dorrance called it "Getting with the feet" or "Getting with the horse so that the horse could get with you" or "blending into the horses movement."

    La Guerineire writes way back during his time that, we must always be wary of those that we choose to imitate if we want to be more than demi- connoisseurs.

    He also says "Theory teaches us to base our work on sound prinicples, and these principles, rather than be opposed to what is natural, must serve to perfect nature with the aid of art."

    So I take that as....we need to work WITH the nature of the horse and understand him the best we can and come from where the HORSE is at, through understanding his nature.

    By using this media that we have now, and specifically threads like this one, we have the great capability of being able to discuss theory so we can better decide for ourselves, what are "sound" principles and learn about what is possible.



  14. #334
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    Re-runs, "using the media" is so important. This line of training and reasoning was nearly lost, thanks to the French revolution (thousands of highly skilled aristocrats were killed) and the unfortunate fact that the French did not make very good paper.

    Germans were skilled papermakers, and developed the printing press.

    So threads like this can help riders begin to explore this style of riding.



  15. #335
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    Default Clinicians in the French school (or those who actually DO walk the walk)

    Quote Originally Posted by re-runs View Post
    "The horse is NEVER wrong." Ray Hunt
    Exactly!

    But I have never read or heard ANY well-respected horseman say anything different.

    I mean, they can't really come out and say "the horse is crap!" can they? You cannot be considered a "true" horseman unless you support the horse.

    And whatever discipline they are from and (when it comes to dressage) whatever school, they all TALK about empathy for the horse, harmony between horse & rider, separation of the aides and even lightness (much of this stuff is even in the FEI test descriptions)...but, like PP, I'm judging with my EYES, not my ears.

    And, in the modern dressage arena (I would say the last 15 yrs) I just don't see much of it winning in the ring.

    Since Germany has dominated modern competitive dressage during this time span, I may be forgiven for judging "the German system" as the reason I'm seeing these riders winning -- and not just winning, but setting all time record scores! After all, they are German/Dutch (is there a "Dutch" school of dressage?)

    And, by virtual of the official judges who give them those scores they are condoning the visual I'm seeing and calling it the pinnacle of what is correct dressage.

    But that is not what I envision when I imagine dressage. It's not even what I imagine when I hear these folks talk or read the test requirements! I mean, I don't want to bash AVG and I'm sure she could care less about my opinion anyway, but if ever there is a rider who is constantly riding the brakes while asking for gas it's her!! So to my eyes at least...those emperor(s) are out there buck naked!

    If this is 'correct' dressage, I guess that's NOT what I want!

    I see more of what I want as a rider (in terms of an actual visual) when I watch folks like BB & RH ride, yet I'm not a cowboy and don't want to be. I know there is the possibility of more refinement in each movement, because chances are I won't be chasing cows.

    So this is where I see the value of this thread (and thank you SY for starting it)...the possibility of "another way of riding."

    But who is going to teach me? How about a list of your favorite clinicians? Extra points if they have videos out.



  16. #336
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kyzteke View Post
    Since Germany has dominated modern competitive dressage during this time span, I may be forgiven for judging "the German system" as the reason I'm seeing these riders winning -- and not just winning, but setting all time record scores! After all, they are German/Dutch (is there a "Dutch" school of dressage?)
    Point of information: it is the Dutch who have been holding the all time record scores and I'm pretty sure Sjef Jansen would credit that to his methods.



  17. #337
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    You claim to not see "this" in the winning ring and I cant seem to find it in the losing one either.

    Are all competition horses summed up into the 3 top horses in the world?

    Is the only ability to see "winning" rings online or at Olympic time?

    Please get out of the house once in a while you might actually learn something
    ~~Member of the TB's Rule Clique ~~
    http://www.off-breed-dressage.blogspot.com/



  18. #338
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    Quote Originally Posted by alicen View Post
    Point of information: it is the Dutch who have been holding the all time record scores and I'm pretty sure Sjef Jansen would credit that to his methods.
    His methods are a miracle for gait improvement and fitness.

    How you apply them is up to you but the inability to see their worth is just blindness. (I mean this to people here not you alicen)

    I have seen toplines (even on average horses) change to a nearly impossible degree and to my own eye they were very correct.

    I know this will tip off a RK debate because unfortunately people cannot see what is happening outside of that or its use.
    ~~Member of the TB's Rule Clique ~~
    http://www.off-breed-dressage.blogspot.com/



  19. #339
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    "But who is going to teach me? How about a list of your favorite clinicians? Extra points if they have videos out."

    Unfortunately, the "best" of who I knew are mostly gone now or are no longer teaching.

    Karl Mikolka, if he ever goes back to teaching again. Insights to the teachings of the SRS that I do not think are available anywhere else. Passed down through the SRS heirarchy by word of mouth only. Sure wish HE would write a book! He had a website with some good articles, also articles in old Practical Horseman and passed down through George Williams who wrote some more recent articles for Dressage Today. Some things you will only get if you are a student or clinic particiapnt though.

    Col. Von Ziegner (book, The Elements of Dressage. yes a German but a gentleman of the old school.) Very elderly now.
    Common sense horsemanship.

    Ray Hunt (video Turning Loose tells alot about working with the horses nature. "What I am trying to teach you, most people do not know exists." (priceless statment there) Unfortunately Ray is no longer with us, all we have left is his book, videos and students like BB.

    Buck Brannaman.......video called The Three Masters (BB, Rodney Jenkins, Goerge Morris). It is a demonstration video, not just a clinic setting so it is more instructional for the spectators.

    All the dead French guys books.....Baucher, J.C. Racinet, Fillis, Beudant, Gueriniere. Littauer`s Horsemans Progress.
    Deb Bennetts DVD translation of Baucher is worth reading.

    I`ve kept all my old D & CT issues and on cold winter nites, drag them out and read the great articles offered. Too bad someone doesn`t compile them all on a CD and revive them for this generation.

    Phillip Karls videos. I have not been to any of his clinics but...
    what I found from his videos is.........the first two seemed ho hum UNTIL I saw the end result and went WOW! Then went back and studied the first two and got a whole lot more out of them.

    Bill Dorrances book "True Horsemanship though Feel". If you know anything about French Classical horsemanship, so many things are going to resonate with you and give you an even clearer meaning.

    Tom Dorrances book True Unity.....very inspirational and will have new meaning to you every time you read it. He likes to use metaphors. One I keep on my nitestand or read when I`m stuck. Not everybody will understand it. I suggest a person get a few French miles under their belt first.

    Those are just some of my favorites that I can think of from the top of my head and what is availabe...... for starters.

    Anybody else?



  20. #340
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    Quote Originally Posted by NOMIOMI1 View Post
    I know this will tip off a RK debate because unfortunately people cannot see what is happening outside of that or its use.
    Not on this thread, please!

    Searching madly for a re-direct...

    So, back to JCR's "little book," I took it down off the shelf because of this discussion, and I find--like most books--there's a lot more there than I got when I first read it.

    And it's pleasing that Part 2: Schooling of the Aids, is 9/10ths a description of the effects of a balanced seat and a number of lunge-line exercises, w/o reins or stirrups, to attain one. Only on the last page of part 2 do we get to schooling the horse--my favorite "lesson of the leg."

    I used to be able to do most of these exercises, some at the canter, but I'd struggle now at the walk, being much stiffer and not as strong. There's an idea for tomorrow's lesson!



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