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The Dressage - Brannaman nexus: Can we talk about particulars?

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  • Originally posted by Fillabeana View Post
    No, they don't,
    But they do know how, and when, to go back to the toolbox for a tool that carries quite a bit more bite on a fractious, opinionated, spoiled, or otherwise difficult horse.
    And they DON'T try to start such a beast in a bosal until they have consistency of response, usually through the snaffle.
    Most spoiled horses today are pasture puffs compare to a range bred 5 or 6 year old mustang that needed to be blindfolded before it could be mounted. Those were the stock the vaqueros often turned to, and they developed these tools.

    https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?f...5975437&type=1

    Originally posted by Fillabeana View Post
    And most vets can take wolf teeth out. I've only ever had one young horse that had 'teething' trouble, and that was wolf teeth.
    'Back in the day', yes, you might have to use a bosal so you weren't hurting the horse with the snaffle. But by today's standards, I'm not buying that one either.
    Not talking about wolf teeth, talking about shedding caps.

    Comment


    • Originally posted by Pocket Pony View Post
      Here are some articles on bits and bitting. Haven't finished reading yet, but looks like it studies a few different snaffle bits.

      http://cvm.msu.edu/research/research...USDF_Dec05.pdf

      http://cvm.msu.edu/research/research...06_Clayton.pdf

      These show some xray pictures of horses with snaffle bits in their mouths - would be interesting to see with a spade bit.
      Hope this is public https://www.facebook.com/pages/Moder...=photos_stream

      Comment


      • Originally posted by Fillabeana View Post
        But it's not on a fence post, it's on a horse's face. And a good bosal is shaped to a horse's face. So it is going to contact the horse's face when you pick up a rein, not tip like it is hung from a fence or a doorknob. If you have to pull hard, yes, you're going to pull the heel knot sideways.

        I just think using a rein on a bosal does not in any way require a post hand in order to give the horse a signal that he can reasonably understand.
        Yes, you'd ideally be using an indirect rein. But if an opening rein was really a huge problem, I'd have heard about it by now from Buck in a clinic, Bryan in a clinic or on dvd, Dr. Deb Bennett, or Harry Whitney via Tom Moates.

        Adam, I don't know that your'e hurting anything, I just really have a strong opinion that the whole 'post hand' necessity is bogus.

        And I HAVE heard both Richard Caldwell and Bruce Sandifer refer to doing groundwork (as you would with a halter, with a LATERAL direction to the rein) on the mecate rein.
        I'm honestly not super fussed if anyone does this, we all need to make our choices about what makes sense to us. I'm also NOT spouting off anything I've made up myself however. The two gentlemen you quote last are the ones who taught me the concept in person.

        If anyone wanted it from the source, a quick question to Bruce via email or on his Facebook group I'm sure would get an answer.

        Not much of a clip, but watch how he uses his hands http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=o50S2Hp1nBk
        Last edited by aktill; Nov. 3, 2013, 01:56 AM.

        Comment


        • Someone mentioned that buck says doubling is the same as dis-engaging the hind quarters. This is one of those things that people repeat, because if Buck said it, it must be true. But it's not. Doubling if anything is about setting the hind feet. It is also used to not allow a horse to brace against a hackamore. But it is not the same as dis-engaging. Dis-engaging is a modern construct, really. Ed Connel explains doubling in depth. Dis-engaement has become such a magical thing buzz word for some. Practically a secret handshake for the Buck crowd. Frankly, I think it is overdone.
          Not to take anything away from Buck. Buck is Buck, no one is quite like him. But he says and does a lot of things that are of his own invention, with the purpose of teaching people who don't know anything anyway. But Buck says a lot of things other hands disagree with. I don't know why he says he doesn't want to waste time in the two rein stage, for instance. I don't know why he says the hackamore is a bluff. But that is a common thing that I have heard my whole life. Except in my own experience, it is no more a bluff than a snaffle..

          Comment


          • Originally posted by Wirt View Post
            Someone mentioned that buck says doubling is the same as dis-engaging the hind quarters. This is one of those things that people repeat, because if Buck said it, it must be true. But it's not. Doubling if anything is about setting the hind feet. It is also used to not allow a horse to brace against a hackamore. But it is not the same as dis-engaging. Dis-engaging is a modern construct, really. Ed Connel explains doubling in depth. Dis-engaement has become such a magical thing buzz word for some. Practically a secret handshake for the Buck crowd. Frankly, I think it is overdone.
            Not to take anything away from Buck. Buck is Buck, no one is quite like him. But he says and does a lot of things that are of his own invention, with the purpose of teaching people who don't know anything anyway. But Buck says a lot of things other hands disagree with. I don't know why he says he doesn't want to waste time in the two rein stage, for instance. I don't know why he says the hackamore is a bluff. But that is a common thing that I have heard my whole life. Except in my own experience, it is no more a bluff than a snaffle..
            That is right, much said in the past posts is not quite correct.

            Doubling is what you do, with a hackamore most times, although you can with a snaffle also.
            The old West stiff, thick bosal, that many don't like at all, they go bump on a horse's nose all the time as it moves, making them sore, or the light grass rope hackamore we use in the SW, that is more limber and has so much more feel to it.

            Doubling is teaching a horse to give and move from your request, have seen it done with a halter also, but halters are just too loose to give good signals, unless you have the horse already trained to doubling.

            As Pine Johnson, of Poco Bueno fame explained it, you double, generally a colt, watching it's hind feet, that is what you want to control from the ground and teach the colt to move them and move over them, both, that is the idea of doubling.

            You double by moving the colt a bit sideways, when he understands to follow your hand on the hackamore reins with the lightest pull and give, then you ask that he move his hind legs with that slight lift of the rein, here single split cotton reins, that have some heft to them.

            Once the colt's mind knows that the slight movement of the rein on that side means move my hind feet over, then you ask them to start bringing their front end around, the hind end still.

            All that takes maybe two to five minutes, depending on how light you have the colt from regular handling.
            What we called it here was keeping your colt handy, not letting it park itself on it's feet on you, so they don't learn resistances from the start, which may lead to fights or blow-ups.

            Once you have the colt understanding what the weight of the reins wiggling mean, you can throw the one rein over it's head and have the colt move all around in front of you, to the opposite side, following that feel of the rein and that is when you know you can get on that colt and you will not have him plant himself without knowing what to do and that you will have a way to guide that colt.

            I have seen people that understand those concepts of those minutes on the ground, teaching responding to reins by moving their body a certain way, get on a colt and keep it moving and working, not with finesse, of course, but already working properly for them, really fun to watch that.

            Many of the good horseman have always done something like that, because it is what works and makes sense.
            I saw that in Europe over 50+ years ago, I see it today.
            Many in the colt competitions are aware and do it, some don't, Tracy Westfall, when she won one, comes to mind.
            By the time she got on a very waspy colt, he already had some idea of what was expected of him, unlike how others were starting their colts, that had to learn on the fly as someone got on their backs, not that well prepared as they could have been.

            I started all our colts, ranch and race colts, with our grass rope hackamore, some for months and always going back to it once older, it is easier on a horse running thru the brush than bits in their mouths, the race colts just for a few weeks, then onto a snaffle.

            I never had a horse run thru the hackamore, because that only happens if you don't know what you are doing and you have a horse that doesn't understand what you are asking with one.
            I have seen it happen to the occasional cowboy, but you could see it coming, the way he was hauling around on it.

            Here are some of the colts and older horses we used working here, with our homemade grass rope hackamore, a practice started and taught by Pine Johnson in our area in the middle of the last century.
            The first picture was some of a race bred filly I started with our hackamore, one how she transitioned to the snaffle.
            In about the fourth ride, look how she is bracing to me asking her to back with that rope, because I had not realized that stump was very, very heavy, she was struggling to even starting to move it, the roots were digging in hard.
            Yes, some times, we make mistakes and learn from them too.
            She went on to run in Luisiana:
            Attached Files

            Comment


            • Expanding on the big, stiff rawhide bosals, those wonderful works of braiding art, as tools, well, the thicker ones, as shown in plenty of videos, even when well adjusted, by the mechanics of them, as the horse moves, go bump-bump-bump on their heads, hitting their noses, causing in some the unsightly callous eventually.

              The AQHA had decades ago videos of some hackamore classes and, especially in a western pleasure class, you could see all the horses loping along, these hackamores again going bumpity-bump on their noses, horses ignoring it, riders happily motoring around and around.

              There are some things that don't work as well as we think, some times common sense really ought to trump tradition.

              The use of those thick bosals and working so hard to start colts without scaring them from all the new things that brings, to then the first few times, or as many as it takes, some for the rest of their lives, letting them buck it out when first saddled, until they "get used to them" are two western riding ways that really need re-examining.

              On turning horses loose or worse, shooing them on when first saddled and expecting them to learn to move off with a saddle and later a rider without fireworks, that just doesn't make sense, when we could keep controlling the situation and get colts started out with a saddle as nicely as we first worked to put that saddle on without creating resistances.

              When I told a cowboy that, he thought about it for a minute and then answered that, letting the colt buck around with the saddle was helpful to him because then he knew what the horse was going to pull on him.

              I didn't have the heart to tell him if he kept working with the colt without teaching him to buck first, maybe he would not have to know what the horse was going to do, if he just never went there.
              Assuming bucking is not really what you want from your cow woking horses

              Comment


              • Originally posted by aktill View Post
                Instead, what Martin was demonstrating was to intentionally restrict the front end slightly and initiate the backup from the hind leg stepping first and then the front end catching up. If you can do that from square, you have better feel than I do! I've no doubt Buck can, but most of the rest of us can't.
                I have not seen anyone else teach the backup like Martin does. Once you get it, it is incredible.

                Comment


                • "I didn't have the heart to tell him if he kept working with the colt without teaching him to buck first, maybe he would not have to know what the horse was going to do, if he just never went there."

                  I believe that Tom Dorrance would definately agree with you on that statement.....He always said; and Ray Hunt repeated that, "It is better to leave the buck in them." (than to bring it out.)

                  "What a horse does is what he lives."

                  And I have heard from people that worked with Tom that he would never get a horse that troubled and feeling alone to cause them to think that they had to buck. Why send a horse to a place where he may at a later point think that bucking is an option, just better not to ever go there.

                  In reference to the bosal bumps and cruder bosals........people used them like a controlling devise back then, "if you don`t respond I am going to hurt you" mentality.... strong arming. My point was..........things are better now with the education that is out there..........and I still stand by what I said earlier; that with the proper foundation, the hackamore can be used like a signal device because..........you would really not want the horse to find out how weak you are, and if you don`t have a good foundation, they just might find that out sooner than later. Never do you want the horse to find out that they are stronger than you are, I think it is universal amongst good horsemen that they would agree that "you just would rather you leave that in them." Now if you have a good foundation and there is a lot of feel going back and forth between you and the horse then.......perhaps starting in the hackamore would be fine. Then too, you have to take into consideration a lot of other things.....like........is the horse the reactive type and do you have to go deep inside that horse to avoid having to over-ride (excuse the pun) the natural instinct of that horse to flee which may take more time on a horse like that to establish the trust that it is going to take to succeed. And do you have the cattle and open space to follow so as to give a horse a real job while you both are "taking the groundwork with you", introducing little bits of hackamore riding as the opportunity arises.

                  Comment


                  • LOVE YOUR POST, Re-Run....thank you. And wow, you just got to watch Joe Wolter ride a dozen horses? I wish he was still out here. I'm halfway between Monterey and San Francisco and this area was a PLETHORA of good horsemanship with the Dorrance Ranch right here in Salinas and others used to be in Hollister, and Central Valley.

                    What you said....is sooo good, I'm keeping it in quotes below It is the horse's feelings, getting it to THINK with you and SEARCHING for that togetherness/with-you-ness and that good deal. I know all the master horseman know this and do this, and I love it when it is TALKED ABOUT and TAUGHT more.

                    I understand you have to do something physically, to get the thought. For me sometimes it's not always a big thing...it's often little. A touch of the rein on the neck/wither...a scritch from my hand at the wither to get a thought back to me, a tiny shift of weight to step a hind foot over.....all those little things are in constant support of keeping the horses' thought with you, rather than bouncing around and leaking or leaving

                    Sometimes you have to get bigger of course, or do more mechanics, and it is a constant constant road. Like what you said about Wolter. He is ALWAYS trying to help the horse.....helping the horse is making it FEEL GOOD. Getting it feeling right

                    Originally posted by re-runs View Post
                    "if you don't go galloping past it to get the next 'exercise' right."

                    Thank you Fillabeana for putting it that way.

                    One thing that I really got out of watching Joe Wolter ride a dozen horses over a weekend was....... the overall feeling you get from him is that he was helping the horses out and wanted them to know that...EVERY TIME he did something with them. It wasn`t long before the horses were asking him what they were going to do next because they were actually looking forward to that good feeling that he kept giving them. He was conscious of their concerns and they knew he knew because he kept putting them in a postion where he could let them feel good about what he was asking. Real good, not just sorta good. Most people always want the horses working FOR THEM, but here was a guy that worked for the horses, as their helper, so that it came to be a trusting relationship almost immediately. No wonder Ray Hunt called himself the horses lawyer. I always thought that he was defending the horses against the people and that might have been part of it but.....I now think that he was saying he wanted the horse to know that he was their lawyer, as in........being their helper/ confidant. I could watch Joe Wolter for another three days, dozen horses because he never is NOT aware of what the horse is thinking and he is the most subtle rider I think I have ever watched.

                    I go and clinic with anybody that comes anywhere near my part of the woods as long as they had a connection with either Tom, Bill Dorrance or Ray Hunt. Before he passed, I got to see Ray Hunt many times, many clincs, many years and all the while I was looking for Tom in Ray. And the reason I keep going to these clinics is because I never really got to see Tom or Bill D. work horses except on video. I am trying to get as close to those two as possible, through learning from their understudies. I keep getting glimpses with every clinic (including Harry Whitney`s) and even changing my mind about things that I "thought" that they meant.

                    "If he's blinking he's thinking, if he's not he's hot ... not sure you realise that what you heard is not what I meant" - Tom Dorrance.
                    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
                    Equine & Pet Portrait Artist
                    www.elainehickman.com
                    **Morgans Do It All**

                    Comment


                    • I wouldn't, and don't. Not trying to be rude, but I wouldn't blame my tool for getting my horse in a position I couldn't cope with.
                      Aktill, I honestly don't know if you've ever got a horse in a position you couldn't cope with. If you did, I think I know enough of you that you would NEVER blame that on the horse.
                      But I also don't know how many colts you've started (easy, cupcake-type or full-of-beans and border-collie smart), or if you've successfully retrained any spoiled or rogue horses.

                      I will say here that I have had horses that were too much for me, that I've found another home for. I was honestly in over my head with my OTTB, and have garnered a whole huge bunch of new skills which now render him reasonably ready to go into a bosal next spring. With nobody thinking I'm going to get hurt, rather people see this horse filling in for me and doing his best to work WITH me, be WITH me, help me and be peaceful together.
                      I've started a few colts of my own, one was a particular challenge. I've taken barely broke horses through to Novice level, recognized- event ribbon-winning horses. (Though by my current standards, I would have a LOT more to do with those horses to consider them nicely going.)

                      And I stand by the idea that there are some horses that more than a few people could get by starting in a bosal, and some horses for whom that would be a very bad idea unless you were Martin Black. Some horses just aren't that inclined to call a bluff...and others are going to have to be shown, more than a few times, that you CAN get THAT big if you need to. Yes, the more competence you have, the more the horse will be truly WITH you, and you can divert problems. But we don't go out riding/starting green horses only when we have the skills of the master...you don't GET the skills of the master until you go making mistakes, being vulnerable, and learning from it.


                      And no, I'm not blaming the tool, I'm saying sometimes things go south, (actually, especially with spoiled pasture puffs who have never been effectively blocked, told NO firmly). And range-bred horses halter broke well after they're over 900 pounds, two of which I've had the pleasure of learning from. If you're OUTSIDE the arena, or round pen, and you're getting things done, with no arena fences...sometimes you are going to need a tool with more bite than a bosal to get big ENOUGH to shut down a big mess.

                      And I've seen some truly extraordinary horseman, have to shut down a potential big mess. Not because they're ham-handed idiots who have no business with a bosal. And not because they had no business 'going outside yet' on that particular horse. But because horses are horses. And the times I've seen this, the horses were in snaffle bits, and they got things shut down before the horse reared over backwards, or finished a bronc ride. But not before the horse tried it, and both of these folks have made more than one honest bridle horse, and know how to use a bosal.

                      Yes, I've also heard Buck say that it's perfectly OK to start a horse in a bosal. What he doesn't often say is that lots of folks don't have the skills to actually do it. In my last clinic he told a story about Mindy Bower using a bosal on a re-start, that had a problem with a bit...Buck told her she needed to go back to the bit and solve the problem, Mindy preferred keeping the horse 'happy' in the bosal. Mindy was never able to make a bridle horse out of that one...and Mindy in my estimation has some serious chops.
                      And every clinic I've been to, he's sent someone in the bosal back to the tack room for a snaffle. Sometimes with a suggestion or two, followed by a private, turn-the-mike-off talk. And sometimes with a roar, Sally, you have NO BUSINESS riding that horse in a bosal. While there are always a smattering of folks in the bosal that do belong in it. (Which, I would predict you, Adam, would not be 'sent back to the tack room' for when you had Tindur in the bosal.)

                      And yes, I know you're talking about shedding caps. But I don't see how a horse's molars, unless they are the ones RIGHT behind the snaffle, are going to make a difference in a bosal vs a snaffle.
                      In fact, if the horse has bad points, (separate issue from shedding caps) he's probably going to be MORE uncomfortable in a bosal with the skin near his teeth being moved back and forth, which in my opinion it would, more so than in a snaffle with no cavesson.

                      And with all of the young horses I've ridden, I've only ever had a horse get upset about wolf teeth. Any other times, it's been points scraping holes in their cheeks. I've never noticed a horse shedding a cap.
                      Last edited by Fillabeana; Nov. 3, 2013, 12:04 PM.

                      Comment


                      • Thaks, re-runs.
                        I would love to go ride with Joe Wolter. I get about one clinic a year, if I'm lucky.
                        I remember listening to Joe, on my Horseman's Gazette DVDs (Eclectic Horseman produces them) and wondering...what on earth is he going on about?
                        And the next year, being able to hear how he is getting that horse feeling good about what is going on.

                        I am especially intrigues with Harry Whitney's 'Free Search'. I gave that Tom Moates book (Further Along The Trail) to my Ray-Hunt-honestly-trained helper to read, to get his thought on it. And my helper told me, that Free Search, that's what all this is ALWAYS all about.

                        Has anyone else read the Tom Moates books, about Tom's horsemanship journeys with Harry Whitney?

                        Comment


                        • The AQHA had decades ago videos of some hackamore classes and, especially in a western pleasure class, you could see all the horses loping along, these hackamores again going bumpity-bump on their noses, horses ignoring it, riders happily motoring around and around.
                          Last time I went out in the bosal, (a 5/8" diameter), I was cantering along beside my husband, who was watching my horse's lips flop with the motion. He commented that boy, the lips were flopping along and the mane-hair reins were going back and forth, but the bosal pretty much didn't move at all!
                          So I think there does exist a bosal that will not cause pain or rough the horse's face up.

                          Many people DO think that you have to sore the corners of a horse's mouth with a twisted-wire snaffle, to get the horse responsive. And they are the same people who take a metal-core or other bosal, with the purpose of soring the horse into a 'sensitive response'.

                          Comment


                          • Originally posted by Fillabeana View Post
                            Last time I went out in the bosal, (a 5/8" diameter), I was cantering along beside my husband, who was watching my horse's lips flop with the motion. He commented that boy, the lips were flopping along and the mane-hair reins were going back and forth, but the bosal pretty much didn't move at all!
                            So I think there does exist a bosal that will not cause pain or rough the horse's face up.

                            Many people DO think that you have to sore the corners of a horse's mouth with a twisted-wire snaffle, to get the horse responsive. And they are the same people who take a metal-core or other bosal, with the purpose of soring the horse into a 'sensitive response'.
                            Well, bosals are made to move up and down, as you can see here, in this run, where the rider is hand-riding most of the time.
                            The lighter bosals in general are a better mousetrap, have less heft to go bumping around.

                            Another we have to watch with bosals is that, because they tend to move around, the side cheeks can push into the horse's eyes, be sure to place them back enough so that doesn't happen, or like here, have leather flopping around where it can hit an eye.

                            When working cattle, I still prefer split reins, so if one gets hung on something, you can let go before someone gets in real trouble:

                            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RcJwm-yUwOo

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                            • I've started horses in bosals as well as in snaffles. And heck, one I backed for the first time in his pasture just by swinging aboard bareback and riding him a bit in his halter and lead. But that was my own homebred and I knew his life history and experience very well and had been messing with him at appropriate stages.

                              I did have one young horse, going in a low port curb for western pleasure when I acquired him at age 3, that was just miserable for months with caps that didn't shed properly. I don't know whether he'd ever previously worn a bosal, but it sure made him hugely comfortable and eliminated much lack of cooperation stemming from discomfort until he outgrew his 'retained caps' phase (with appropriate help from the vet).

                              A friend has a now 15 yo mare that goes happily in a bosal for anything and everything- and unhappily with any metal in her mouth. A case of not knowing prior history but finding a mutually agreeable solution and leaving well enough alone.

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                              • I think I'm at the position where I'm willing to say that we all have well thought out positions, and can agree to disagree in some spots

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                                • Yes, it is certainly all about that.

                                  This is why I love Harry Whitney. I clinic'd with him in the 90s, audited a few more and finally got to clinic again last month with him in Clovis, CA.

                                  And Tom Moates does a great job in talking about the Harry Whitney training/philisophy and I've read all four of his books. Since Harry isn't out there marketing himself a lot, it's nice for Tom to write about his takeaways and what he experiences at the Harry Whitney clinic and going down this journey.

                                  I'd highly recommend anyone to clinic with Harry Whitney if they can. My own trainer has been at this with Harry for many many years and I feel blessed to have her here at my ranch every week to help me continue the journey. Another great trainer to catch when he's here is Ross Jacobs, who is of the Harry Whitney path, too.

                                  Originally posted by Fillabeana View Post
                                  Thaks, re-runs.
                                  I would love to go ride with Joe Wolter. I get about one clinic a year, if I'm lucky.
                                  I remember listening to Joe, on my Horseman's Gazette DVDs (Eclectic Horseman produces them) and wondering...what on earth is he going on about?
                                  And the next year, being able to hear how he is getting that horse feeling good about what is going on.

                                  I am especially intrigues with Harry Whitney's 'Free Search'. I gave that Tom Moates book (Further Along The Trail) to my Ray-Hunt-honestly-trained helper to read, to get his thought on it. And my helper told me, that Free Search, that's what all this is ALWAYS all about.

                                  Has anyone else read the Tom Moates books, about Tom's horsemanship journeys with Harry Whitney?
                                  ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
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                                  www.elainehickman.com
                                  **Morgans Do It All**

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                                  • Originally posted by Bluey View Post
                                    When working cattle, I still prefer split reins, so if one gets hung on something, you can let go before someone gets in real trouble:

                                    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RcJwm-yUwOo
                                    OMG, that video - did anyone else watch it?! I always wondered why the mecate is such a long length - see how you can get into trouble?!
                                    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

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                                    • Originally posted by Fillabeana View Post
                                      DLee, I was just thinking of adding Betty Staley as a bridge between 'dressage' and 'vaquero'.
                                      Betty rode a whole bunch with Ray Hunt, so she isn't 'just' a Buck person, and she has ridden at the upper levels, so she does know dressage from the basic, fundamental level as it applies to the development of an upper level horse.
                                      I stumbled across a guy by the name of Lester Buckley. For those trying to "merge" NHS and classical dressage I think he would be the key. He studied in Germany for afew years and actually got his accreditation (license, whatever) in Germany as a instructor.

                                      He does come to the US alot for clinics, but he is based in HI. To my eye he really looks like the real deal.

                                      I've been searching for a real, knowledgeable "bridge" horseperson between the NHS/vaquero tradition and classical dressage for years and years.

                                      I feel there use to be a time in history where these were not that far apart in appearance anyway, but these days they seem to be almost total opposites.

                                      I don't believe this is really true -- much of the differences seem to be mostly functional/practical (like needing one hand free for a rope etc) and having to do with style (you could not ride a horse in a dressage frame for 10 hrs on the range...they simply could not do it).

                                      So, while I have the most admiration for BB and think he is more awesome than awesome, he hasn't actually ridden dressage or studied under any dressage "masters". His background is all western. I'm sure he was exposed to English disciplines after he became successful, but I'm talking about actually studying and practicing under a tutor....the way he did w/Ray Hunt. I think that makes a difference.

                                      Lester Buckley did and continues to take lessons under some fairly well-known dressage instructors, although his main base is western (cutting, to be exact). To my eye, he looks like a very impressive rider...light, but with the level of contact required in modern dressage.

                                      I know this is OT, but if anyone has ridden or cliniced w/him I'd love to hear about it.

                                      BTW, does anyone know what dressage teachers Betty Staley has studied under? Does anyone know if she shows at all?

                                      And in answer to the OP's question: I think we all have to take what we need from any teacher and let some of it go. It depends on our personal goals. However I'm more inclined to keep it and get good at it (whatever the exercise) rather than let it go. People like BB, Hunt, Staley, Buckley, Black, etc. etc. know their stuff...so even if I don't "get" it, often I'll just take their word for it.

                                      Some day it might make sense to me...
                                      Last edited by Kyzteke; Nov. 3, 2013, 08:07 PM.

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                                      • Originally posted by Kyzteke View Post
                                        I stumbled across a guy by the name of Lester Buckley. For those trying to "merge" NHS and classical dressage I think he would be the key. He studied in Germany for afew years and actually got his accreditation (license, whatever) in Germany as a instructor.

                                        He does come to the US alot for clinics, but he is based in HI.

                                        I have the most admiration for BB; think he is just awesome!! But he actually hasn't ridden dressage or studied under any dressage "masters". I think that makes a difference.

                                        Does anyone know what dressage teachers Betty Staley has studied under? Does anyone know if she shows at all?
                                        Very good questions.

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                                        • Ross Jacobs is another one that can bridge dressage & H/J with this type of horsemanship (in his case, Harry Whitney)

                                          Ross did everything from racing to show jumpers to dressage and more, before he found Harry Whitney and the good horsemanship (Ray Hunt, Tom & Bill Dorrance)
                                          ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
                                          Equine & Pet Portrait Artist
                                          www.elainehickman.com
                                          **Morgans Do It All**

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