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leg aids

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  • leg aids

    Can someone please help me understand what the different leg aids are, i.e. go faster, bend, slow down, move over? For example when leg yielding I am using my inner thigh - is that correct? Is there a "Leg aids for dummies" out there somewhere?

  • #2
    Sorry, but it's just not that simple. Leg aids work in combination with all the other aids to influence direction, speed, bend, etc. Your inner thigh is part of the equation, but only part. Also keep in mind that the aids you use will change throughout a movement as small corrections are made in response to the hrose's natural tendencies. You might start with something like Museler's Riding Logic or Sylvia Loch's Classical Seat. Nothing can take the place of a good instructor though! Good luck.
    Proud COTH lurker since 2001.

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    • #3
      It is "a lot" about coordination between legs and the other aids, and i agree tha an instructor is invaluable. So often we are giving (conflicting0 aids we don't even know about.

      But there are two books, both either still in pring or easily available second havd, that give very detailed descriptions of the aids. They are good for people for whom "understanding the principles" are important, not just the feed back from the instructor.

      Effective Horsemanship by Noel Jackson

      Give Your Horse a Chance by d'Endrody
      Janet

      chief feeder and mucker for Music, Spy, Belle and Tiara. Someone else is now feeding and mucking for Chief and Brain (both foxhunting now).

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      • #4
        Instead of thinking of aids as leg aids or rein aids, a rider really needs to think about aids as "weight aids" because when the seatbones are correctly weighted by the upper torso, everything is just there, where it is supposed to be.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by angel View Post
          Instead of thinking of aids as leg aids or rein aids, a rider really needs to think about aids as "weight aids" because when the seatbones are correctly weighted by the upper torso, everything is just there, where it is supposed to be.
          This. And a good ground person when you can.

          Otherwise it's like this:
          1. Outside leg flexing at .5 lbs pressure two inches behind the girth not to exceed a 20º angle
          2. Inside leg quiet at .0001 lbs pressure at the girth even with the tilt of the earth's axis
          3. Shoulders turned at 5º angle from the sun
          4. Inside hand squeezes for .006 sec at .09 lbs of pressure in time with ABBA's Dancing Queen
          5. Outside hand...
          Horse where are you going?!? I haven't fixed my outside hand!...
          Camels spit, Mary, camels - Catherine Haddad "Dressage Critic

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          • #6
            Jane Savoie provides an excellent, IMO, description of all aids in many of her books. The Happy Horse course is great, but you can get plenty of good information in her Cross-Training Your Horse books too.

            Many people skip the part about the rider and go directly to the part about the horse. That usually does not produce the desired effect ...

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            • #7
              Many people skip the part about the rider and go directly to the part about the horse. That usually does not produce the desired effect ...
              No truer words have been spoken .

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              • #8
                Originally posted by angel View Post
                Instead of thinking of aids as leg aids or rein aids, a rider really needs to think about aids as "weight aids" because when the seatbones are correctly weighted by the upper torso, everything is just there, where it is supposed to be.
                Precisely.
                Weight aides are what are universal whether you are on a dutch mare, a home bred arabian, an OTTB... doesn't matter. you master the weight aides you'll be able to sit on any horse and "push it's buttons"
                www.destinationconsensusequus.com
                chaque pas est fait ensemble

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                • Original Poster

                  #9
                  Thank you all for your suggestions. I didn't put my question well at all. Petstorejunkie I am glad you posted because it was a comment you made that prompted my poorly-worded question and seeing your name brought it back to me.

                  The comment was made in a thread called "for those that dressage out of the arena" and you said "I'm curious if you have been taught the functions of the different parts of your leg for aides. you'd be surprised, most people don't. The go button on your leg is in a different location entirely from the move over button, and there's a retard, and whoa button on your leg too".

                  So this is actually what I was trying to get at.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by coymackerel View Post
                    The comment was made in a thread called "for those that dressage out of the arena" and you said "I'm curious if you have been taught the functions of the different parts of your leg for aides. you'd be surprised, most people don't. The go button on your leg is in a different location entirely from the move over button, and there's a retard, and whoa button on your leg too".

                    So this is actually what I was trying to get at.
                    Aha! I gotcha. These places are used in combination with the universal weight aides. for example a canter transition is the forward shift of the inside seatbone as if to say "let's go this way" that brings your outside leg back a tad. then it's the shin/inner calf part of the leg that gives a cue (if needed) for the upward transition to occur (because that's the forward cue part of your leg). some horses are trained to inside leg, others outside leg.
                    Sadly, I know very few teach it, heck most people do it without knowing there's actually a method to the cueing madness.
                    Here:
                    http://www.flickr.com/photos/2124034...in/photostream

                    You would enjoy Dendrode, unfortunately the only piece of his work I've ever seen lives in my old trainer's bathroom. He gives pictorial guides to everything, breaks it down like freakin stereo instructions.... good stuff
                    Last edited by Petstorejunkie; Jul. 7, 2011, 07:59 PM.
                    www.destinationconsensusequus.com
                    chaque pas est fait ensemble

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                    • #11
                      Aids are simply that. They aid in the language of communication with the horse. They are used in combinations. The ODG's talk a lot about the aids and there are many books on the subject. In classical riding the aids start with the seat and what psj calls weight. It starts the rider's ability to help the horse balance himself and the rider. The legs and hands are added to refine the language.
                      Groom to trainer: "Where's the glamour? You promised me glamour!"

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                      • Original Poster

                        #12
                        Wow, that is very helpful. And illustrates waaay more finesse than I can currently lay claim to. I must be a visual learner because this picture is sticking. I will take a look at the suggested books with this in mind. Thanks!

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