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Spinoff: "French School!"

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  • Originally posted by ideayoda View Post
    I disagree. When horse is working free they DO lift their chest/fold their hind legs, it gives them the greatest freedom. We are merely trying to copy nature with us on their back.
    I guess I should have been more specific - I don't know that it is their natural inclination to travel with their backs up *with a rider on their back* - it might make them feel less balanced, at least in the beginning until they learn how to carry a rider. In watching my horses run free in the pasture at home, depending on what they are doing, sometimes the head is up and back is dropped, and sometimes the neck is beautifully arched, head ifv, back up, hocks bent, and movement is floating. I always wish I had a video camera for those moments!
    My Mustang Adventures - Mac, my mustang | Annwylid D'Lite - my Cob filly

    "A horse's face always conveys clearly whether it is loved by its owner or simply used." - Anja Beran

    Comment


    • I think some very naturally gifted conformationally correct good minded horses find balance/self carriage easier to achieve than some others. I have had some youngsters that were very naturally well balanced (and strong/well muscled) for their ages and others who took considerably more time to properly develop appropriate muscling/fitness. I fully agree that dressage horses are more like 'body builders" than say event horses that are more like "tri-athletes".
      Redbud Ranch
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      • The blowing nose is created because the saliva is being inhaled rather than swallowing. The good news is that there IS saliva, the further news is that the horse needs to chew/thrust the tongue and swallow.
        sorry, i have been thinking about this all morning

        if the above were true wouldn't there be foam coming out of the horses nose when they snorted? i have never seen that happen, i dont think........ i forgot to ask today my trainer what he thought...

        also, i agree there is snorting and snorting and you need to be able to read which is which.... but the common blowing of the nose that happens as horses warm up and become more submissive is what i am talking about (and i believe what GP is talking about too?)

        Comment


        • I dont have an answer for you but today I was actually paying attention to wether my guy did his snort thing or not---and he did. This was following our routine warm up at walk and over ground poles. When I got the first signal (rounding his topside/reaching down/out) I was looking for a smothe transition into trot work and within the first two three strides he raised his head momentarily did his snort thing and then proceeded in a very nice rhythmic swinging trot. I actually think there is some merit to what ideayoda is saying---but also think that at least with my boy there is a submissive quality to this action. If you can imagine the action as something along the lines of him "Snort-Snort-Wet-Mouth-Release Jaw" at least this is my interpretation of what 'might be happening" with my guy. Also my guy is very "jowly" with dinner plate cheeks and big ribbon candy teeth.

          Its very likely its a mild form salivary "reflex" response--I think Ideoyoda mentioned something like this. With respect to saliva dripping from the nose--it can and does in bucket loads if the reflex is strong enough trigger a very abrupt event. Ive witnessed this sort of thing in highly aroused stallions when they are stimulated during collections. Its a bit startling if you have not seen it before---looks like their head sprung a leak.
          Redbud Ranch
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          • interesting!

            my pony snorts when he is ready to get down to work.... as did my mare.... the pony produces a lot of foam/saliva while the mare a small amount....

            when i hear this type of snort - it is always a dividing line - the horse is always more supple/loose/unconstrained/etc after snorting... it just never occurred to me the reason they were doing it was to blow out saliva....

            i would love to see more info on this !

            Comment


            • Originally posted by mbm View Post
              ....if the above were true wouldn't there be foam coming out of the horses nose when they snorted?
              It is the sneeze type blowing when saliva FIRST starts BEFORE the tongue thrusts and the horse chews and swallows. When the horse is going from dry to STARTING to be wet that they inhilate saliva slightly.

              The soft blowing/snorting within the gaits is relaxation in exhalation.
              I.D.E.A. yoda

              Comment


              • Originally posted by ideayoda View Post
                It is the sneeze type blowing when saliva FIRST starts BEFORE the tongue thrusts and the horse chews and swallows. When the horse is going from dry to STARTING to be wet that they inhilate saliva slightly.
                ok, that makes much more sense to me

                The soft blowing/snorting within the gaits is relaxation in exhalation.
                yes, of course...... they are two very different things.... i think the soft blowing is like purring....

                Comment


                • Originally posted by ideayoda View Post
                  Absolutely, this is the heart of traditional training. It is written about in most old treatise, but particulalry by Seunig and an old german vet named
                  Udo Burger (which is the basis of present day works by Gerd Heushmann)

                  I disagree. When horse is working free they DO lift their chest/fold their hind legs, it gives them the greatest freedom. We are merely trying to copy nature with us on their back.

                  Wonderful points to discuss. And WHY the traditional school works so effectively.
                  I wanted to mention how much I enjoyed Heuschmanns new book--it has become and instant favorite of mine. I had already read some Udo Burger and was espeially inspired by some of direct Quotations from Seunig in Heuschmanns new book.


                  I also wanted to come back today and say I agree with the above---I too believe strongly that horses want to work in balance and freedom. Ive been working through a hole which was mine and I know my guy was not especially pleased with me causing him to work harder than he deemed necessary. Yesterday we had our "light bulb" moment and today I wanted to confirm that 'it was not just a flimsy patch job'. Today we definitely confirmed the hole has been filled and he offered the best half steps Ive ever ridden and I could tell by his demeanor and expression he was SO much happier that I finally got my act together.

                  No snort today.
                  Redbud Ranch
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                  Comment


                  • Question for Ideayoda

                    Chere Ideayoda - Qui etes vous??

                    I am very new to the forum - enjoying this thread immensely - in fact I have been waiting for a thread like so to appear. However after parusing the Lexington Dressage club website - I have only found 3 instructors - Are you 1 of the three or someone entirely different ?
                    If you do not wish to answer here then svp pm me and I can know with whom I may wish to clinic someday soon.

                    Merci bien...
                    Last edited by belgianWBLuver; Oct. 8, 2012, 01:55 PM.

                    Comment


                    • I clinic there (and many places all over the US), not live there. Sent you a pm.
                      I.D.E.A. yoda

                      Comment

                      • Original Poster

                        AWESOME weekend!

                        Just got back from a 3-day clinic with Francois Lemaire de Ruffieu at Southmowing Stables in Guilford, VT. If you ever, EVER have the opportunity to work with him, it's not to be missed! Most fun I've had in a dressage lesson in 20 years--no joke! And the people who run the barn could not possibly be nicer.

                        Not a pure Baucherist, I'd put Francois right there with Gen'l. L'Hotte as someone who's achieved the perfect fusion of the principles of La Guerinere and those who came after. Rigorous, demanding work but he makes it FUN! Do a group lesson if you can and then a private for maximum effect.

                        He clinics in other places in the US and Europe throughout the season.

                        Comment


                        • What did you work on? Btw, I've been working on things from this and the other thread and it is fascinating. My sensitive mare stays relaxed and thoughtful.

                          Comment

                          • Original Poster

                            Originally posted by Amara View Post
                            What did you work on? Btw, I've been working on things from this and the other thread and it is fascinating. My sensitive mare stays relaxed and thoughtful.
                            I myself was there for a "tuneup;" it's been too long since I've been essentially on my own. The specific question I wanted to address was clarification of the aids in lateral work; I've been told so many things by so many different people over the years, complicated by re-making Western horses who were taught it backwards, that I've probably been just adding another layer to the confusion!

                            Francois teaches with WONderful clarity; "just weight the side toward which you want him to move!" He also explained WHY; and he had me try it the wrong way AND the right way to prove it to myself! The mechanisms by which incorrect aids can actually "block" a horse from doing what you want can be subtle indeed; I think this is the true, hidden cause of a great deal of the "resistance" we see. As Francois says, "if that's what you tell him to do that's what you will GET!"

                            For a complete picture of what and how he teaches, he has several books in print: Handbook of Riding Essentials and Handbook of Jumping Essentials. He is a complete horseman and a great gentleman besides, and it was a privilege to be there for a weekend intensive with him. He taught a jumping lesson each day as well which was only for the limber and gutsy. Our sometimes-timid junior made a breakthrough to 3'6" and is over the moon!

                            With a bit of trepidation at dinner I mentioned I was training a young TWH; I expected to be dismissed with a crinkled nose, but instead Francois broke out in a delighted grin and said, "Oh, I LOVE those--I ride them all the time in KY!" He advised me to work him classically in all the exercises we did, no different, and said I'm welcome to bring him next time. Gaited Dressage folks, fait attention!

                            Comment


                            • Sounds like a great experience, SY! Had you lessoned with him before? Good reminder about the lateral work - I (probably like most people) find LY in one direction infinitely harder than the other. Now I'll try to remember to weight that side and see if it helps me.
                              My Mustang Adventures - Mac, my mustang | Annwylid D'Lite - my Cob filly

                              "A horse's face always conveys clearly whether it is loved by its owner or simply used." - Anja Beran

                              Comment

                              • Original Poster

                                Originally posted by Pocket Pony View Post
                                Sounds like a great experience, SY! Had you lessoned with him before? Good reminder about the lateral work - I (probably like most people) find LY in one direction infinitely harder than the other. Now I'll try to remember to weight that side and see if it helps me.
                                My friends with the house up there had been after me for awhile; it's hard to walk away from my place with 20+ horses for that long, but All Was Quiet on the Western Front this weekend and I threw my friend the keys and jumped in the rig! Sure am glad I did! Francois will do another clinic at the end of May there, then he does another over the summer.
                                Google him and you'll find out where else he goes . . .

                                Comment


                                • Checking in..

                                  to keep this thread alive and to whine.
                                  Well things had been going quite well with the BWB but yesterday was a huge backslide.
                                  HAve been continuing the same outline, A bit of ground work, Lunge work then ridden. It was crazy windy but he was not spooky as I had thought he might be.
                                  Lunging was lazy, Took 30 minutes for him to get thinking forward again.
                                  Hopped on and reviewed forward. kept my leg draped tried to make sure I was sitting evenly in the middle of him. He started an old habit of just turning his head off the rail and trying to wander tword the gate. I made corrections time after time.
                                  Sent him into trot which was better but when I asked for a bit more trot he did this half hop thing like he was trying to canter, repeatedly. I used to think he did this with owner because her aids were confusing, I had no leg on just draping.
                                  Stayed back with my upper body and gave a squeeze with my fingers. Brought him back to walk and then to trot, again, non forward trot and when I asked for more trot, he started hopping again.
                                  What is going on. This horse has be so baffled I am just scratching my head. He was not pinning his ears, cranky or spooky. Is he just not getting it? is he too literal? Lunge work consists of a lot of transitions from trot to canter to trot.
                                  is he anticipating that if we were trotting we must be cantering next?
                                  I am not loose in the tack, or inadvertently using a canter aide. This has me so baffled. Sigh~

                                  Comment

                                  • Original Poster

                                    Originally posted by Sannois View Post
                                    to keep this thread alive and to whine.
                                    Well things had been going quite well with the BWB but yesterday was a huge backslide.
                                    HAve been continuing the same outline, A bit of ground work, Lunge work then ridden. It was crazy windy but he was not spooky as I had thought he might be.
                                    Lunging was lazy, Took 30 minutes for him to get thinking forward again.
                                    Hopped on and reviewed forward. kept my leg draped tried to make sure I was sitting evenly in the middle of him. He started an old habit of just turning his head off the rail and trying to wander tword the gate. I made corrections time after time.
                                    Sent him into trot which was better but when I asked for a bit more trot he did this half hop thing like he was trying to canter, repeatedly. I used to think he did this with owner because her aids were confusing, I had no leg on just draping.
                                    Stayed back with my upper body and gave a squeeze with my fingers. Brought him back to walk and then to trot, again, non forward trot and when I asked for more trot, he started hopping again.
                                    What is going on. This horse has be so baffled I am just scratching my head. He was not pinning his ears, cranky or spooky. Is he just not getting it? is he too literal? Lunge work consists of a lot of transitions from trot to canter to trot.
                                    is he anticipating that if we were trotting we must be cantering next?
                                    I am not loose in the tack, or inadvertently using a canter aide. This has me so baffled. Sigh~
                                    30 minutes of longeing is waaaaaaay too much. That'd make ME cranky too! Remember, if something's not working, don't do MORE of it, HARDER. Do something ELSE!

                                    Comment


                                    • Have you had a change in the weather?

                                      Sometimes a change in the weather hurts. I know it does me. THe fact that he didn't lay his ears back and wasn't cranky or spooky is a good thing. Means you have built some trust. Going toward the gate subtly may be his way of saying "I hurt. Can we stop now?". Hopping could mean that you are engaging the parts that hurt.

                                      THere is no backslide. Everything you have done so far is still there.

                                      I never sit evenly on the horse except perhaps in passage and piaffe. I telescope down into my inside seat bone for everything except leg yield. It is the inside hind that balances the rider for the horse. It allows me to not use the leg and REMINDS me not to. It prevents me from losing my balance to the outside.

                                      Probe his body. His back, shoulder neck and hindquarters. Check for any reaction. If it is cold try a heating pad.

                                      I normally work a horse on the longe less than 15 minutes. Once they know what I am asking it is about 7. THen work in hand. Both these things give me an insight into where the horse is, how he feels, what is working well today and what is not.
                                      “Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one.”
                                      ? Albert Einstein

                                      Comment


                                      • Interesting..

                                        Originally posted by horsefaerie View Post
                                        Have you had a change in the weather?

                                        Sometimes a change in the weather hurts. I know it does me. THe fact that he didn't lay his ears back and wasn't cranky or spooky is a good thing. Means you have built some trust. Going toward the gate subtly may be his way of saying "I hurt. Can we stop now?". Hopping could mean that you are engaging the parts that hurt.

                                        THere is no backslide. Everything you have done so far is still there.

                                        I never sit evenly on the horse except perhaps in passage and piaffe. I telescope down into my inside seat bone for everything except leg yield. It is the inside hind that balances the rider for the horse. It allows me to not use the leg and REMINDS me not to. It prevents me from losing my balance to the outside.

                                        Probe his body. His back, shoulder neck and hindquarters. Check for any reaction. If it is cold try a heating pad.

                                        I normally work a horse on the longe less than 15 minutes. Once they know what I am asking it is about 7. THen work in hand. Both these things give me an insight into where the horse is, how he feels, what is working well today and what is not.
                                        I did think he looked stiff when we first started. He is by no means in the shape he needs to be.
                                        It has turned cold suddenly, 40s overnight and 50s during the day.
                                        My bad, he told me from the get go on the lunge that he was not up to par.
                                        Thank you horsefairie.

                                        Comment


                                        • It shouldn't take 30 minutes to get a horse going forward. If the horse was coming out of a stall I'd give the horse 10 minutes to warm up. If the horse won't go then I'd assume something was wrong and that the horse was sore somewhere. (Because when I ask a horse to go forward, I mean it.)

                                          The hopping was a signal to me that the horse is crooked and thus blocking himself from going forward. When horses are sore they get extra crooked to compensate.

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