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Double Bridles

This is a discussion on Double Bridles within the Dressage forums, part of the English Riding category
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View Poll Results: Double Bridles
They are a great teaching aid 22 51.16%
I use them all the time 0 0%
They are unneccesary and cruel 4 9.30%
Don't have an opinon 17 39.53%
Voters: 43. You may not vote on this poll

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    12-31-2012, 03:25 AM
  #141
Trained
You don't know this horse!! He has well and truly learned that if he limps he gets out of work - on more than one occasion I have gone and got him out of the paddock, he has been three-legged lame, and I've therefore checked him all over [no signs of anything] and chucked him back in the paddock, only to watch him "miraculously" become sound and start bolting around like an idiot with no sign of any pain. He is 17, and a teeny bit arthritic in his hind end [we think, based on the fact that giving him Pentosan peps him up and helps him use himself better], but invariably when he is faking it he goes "lame" in the front end, not the hind which he is genuinely arthritic in, AND when he's faking it he will occasionally switch legs, so I know that when he's lame consistently on the same leg he is actually genuinely hurting and not trying to get out of work. I have learned not to trust him on matters of ouchy in the front end because of this - if I can see something, sure, he's lame, but if not, I call his bluff, and invariably he "miraculously comes good" within 30 seconds.

He is genuinely lame at the moment after getting himself kicked... so he's off work... there have been three times in the time I have had him that front end lameness has been real, this time after the kick being one of them... another being because he injured himself in the transport truck on his way to me... and the third being the time he nearly ripped a heel bulb off being an idiot in the pasture.

He gets a bit stiff in the hind end/loins at times and I can't let heavier riders on him because he will walk like he's 30 the next day so I would think it was his hind causing leg yield to be so difficult, if he wasn't so good at everything else I know how to ask for! As mentioned in a previous post he can be hard to get and keep together and working from behind but one look at his conformation will tell you that's not something that would come naturally to him anyway - he has a VERY long back and loin, and less than ideal hindquarters!
     
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    12-31-2012, 06:35 AM
  #142
Weanling
Just to add, I've known horses (funny enough, also both part Arabs) who have faked lamenesses as well. My sisters old horse was a classic example - he was sound in the field, sound to trot up, both untracked and under saddle, sound to lunge in the field or to hack out. But he associated the school with hard work, the the minute you led him to the school he would go hopping lame in front. Vet checked him, tack checked, back checked, teeth checked, absolutely no cause for it. He's just learned if he hopped he would get led back to the yard again. It took fittening him up outside of the school so that the work was easy, and then persevering with riding him in the school each day until he stopped pretending to be lame, and then one day he just stopped doing it as he realised it wasn't working any more.
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    12-31-2012, 07:25 AM
  #143
Yearling
Quote:
Originally Posted by equitate    
We spend hours straightening them because they are trapezoidal in shape (wider behind than in front), so we must either align inside fore/hand (greener horses) or outside hind/outside front (trained horses capable of greater lateral flexiblity).
This is very incorrect - to be straight the horses spine should be equidistant from the wall/fence/arena edging - therefore you cannot line up the front and back legs with each other - if you align the outside hind and outside foreleg you would have a horse working quarters in - not correct.
     
    12-31-2012, 07:36 AM
  #144
Yearling
Blue eyed pony I would suggest that the reason you are finding lateral work difficult is the your horse though arthriticy in his hind legs will be stiff in other parts of his body. The body compensates for irregularities in steps by holding itself in different ways. These may lead to tension and sore limb/muscles in other areas.

Some years ago I had a TB that would sometimes completely refuse to do any lateral work. He had a history of back problems - when he resisted in the lateral work I got the chiropractor in and he would sort him out. I'd then get back my lovely supply soft horse - lateral work now a breeze.
     
    12-31-2012, 11:58 PM
  #145
Trained
Tnavas, but then why would shoulder fore, travers and renvers be easy? All our laterals other than the leg yield are simple. If I'm riding with enough inside leg [I have a bad habit of dropping leg contact altogether] he's a piece of cake. Leg yield at walk is getting there, I can actually get him to cross his hind legs over.

I realized yesterday that I've been riding him in a saddle that's two gullet sizes narrower than I would normally choose - he is in an extra-wide in that particular saddle and I didn't realize but it only had a medium-wide in it. Whoops! That would explain a lot.
     
    01-01-2013, 12:00 AM
  #146
Weanling
The spine if lightly flexible laterally (1 degree per rib), therefore the smallest circle the horse can be evenly bended on is 6m (so those old dead guys were pretty smart).The reason that the trained horse can align outside fore and hind (on a straight line) is because of this bend, but it is also the reason for aligning inside fore/inside hind in the greener horse which is minimal positioning.

Meanwhile, if you want to disagree with the extensive study of training of the spanish riding school, then do so. It does apply, otherwise the horse would never learn lateral flexibility nor axial rotation (the proper use of the hind legs/swinging back/etc).
     
    01-01-2013, 12:18 AM
  #147
Yearling
Quote:
Originally Posted by blue eyed pony    
Tnavas, but then why would shoulder fore, travers and renvers be easy? All our laterals other than the leg yield are simple. If I'm riding with enough inside leg [I have a bad habit of dropping leg contact altogether] he's a piece of cake. Leg yield at walk is getting there, I can actually get him to cross his hind legs over.

I realized yesterday that I've been riding him in a saddle that's two gullet sizes narrower than I would normally choose - he is in an extra-wide in that particular saddle and I didn't realize but it only had a medium-wide in it. Whoops! That would explain a lot.
Think you just answered your own question! A tight saddle will make him pretty uncomfortable.
     
    01-01-2013, 12:38 AM
  #148
Trained
Can't wait for his new saddle to arrive so I can see how he goes in something that fits - assuming of course it DOES fit, because I bought the new saddle off photos. Main thing I'm worried about is making sure it doesn't sit too low on his withers, the rest should be fine.

His old saddle, I'm really not sure why I didn't double check sooner, because his sweat patches haven't been perfect for quite a while. I know what he's supposed to be in, that saddle has been fitted to him twice by professionals [he doesn't change shape much, occasionally he'll go up or down a gullet size but that's it], so I'm not even sure why it had the wrong plate in it. But it's Magic's now, and she's in a medium plate... no professional has fitted anything to her, that's just what sits best on her back. I need to have her saddle fitted before I break her though because her back is straighter than Monty's.
     
    01-01-2013, 01:56 AM
  #149
Yearling
Quote:
Originally Posted by equitate    
The spine if lightly flexible laterally (1 degree per rib), therefore the smallest circle the horse can be evenly bended on is 6m (so those old dead guys were pretty smart).The reason that the trained horse can align outside fore and hind (on a straight line) is because of this bend, but it is also the reason for aligning inside fore/inside hind in the greener horse which is minimal positioning.

Meanwhile, if you want to disagree with the extensive study of training of the spanish riding school, then do so. It does apply, otherwise the horse would never learn lateral flexibility nor axial rotation (the proper use of the hind legs/swinging back/etc).
Definitely not disagreeing with the Spanish Riding School - my early dressage training was with Robert Hall who trained at the SRS.

Quote from Alois Podhajsky 'The Complete Training of Horse & Rider' page 91
With all young horses and often with insufficiently trained older horses, the hind feet do not follow the tracks made by the forefeet but come away to the side; in other words, the horse is crooked.

Horses are narrower through the shoulders than they are through the hips. If the outer side of the body is parallel to the wall, the hindquarters are carried further into the arena than the forelegs. Also, by pushing his shoulder against the wall the horse can evade the guidance of the rider and cannot be turned so easily. On the other hand, which is a matter of greater consequence, he will be able to avoid, by his crookedness, the bending of the joints of the hind legs, thus escaping the gymnastic training of the hindquarters that is so necessary for balance and physical training.

With a straight horse the spine MUST be parallel to the wall, that is the distance from the outside shoulder to the wall must be greater than that of the outside hip. This indicates the way to straighten the horse: the forelegs must be brought in front of the hind legs, which means that the shoulders of the horse must be taken away from the wall so that the hind legs will step onto or in front of the corresponding footprints of the forefeet.

Only when the horse is straight, when the hind feet follow the forefeet, will it be possible to b end the three joints of the hind legs to make then carry a greater proportion of the weight and thus obtain balance.

We do 'Shoulder fore' & 'Shoulder In' to gain control over the shoulders so that we can ride the horse truly straight.

     
    01-01-2013, 01:11 PM
  #150
Trained
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tnavas    
my early dressage training was with Robert Hall who trained at the SRS.
Come to Australia and be my coach! Please?! I have discovered that I actually love dressage, and there is nothing better than the feeling of power and grace beneath you when you and your horse both get it right.
     

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