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Leg yielding

This is a discussion on Leg yielding within the Dressage forums, part of the English Riding category
  • Dressage leg yielding
  • Problems that can happen in turn on the forehand

 
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    09-12-2010, 03:11 PM
  #21
Weanling
Hi, I have a question and I'd highly appreciate if somebody answered, I didn't want to start a new topic about it however if nobody responds I will.

Leg yielding x Turn on the forehand

When you think about it the turn on the forehand is kind of a leg yielding but... How do you make a dierence between these two, how do you tell the horse what exactly you want him to do, how do you differ the cues? I know many people start teaching the turn on the forehand when the horse is facing a fence or a wall so he can't move forward and learns to move his hind quarters only but by the time you move away from the wall and you want the horse to perform the turn on the forehand "freely". How does he know if you want him to turn on the forehand or if he's supposed to move sideways? As far as I understand the leg cues are exactly the same, is the trick in squeezing the reins when wanting to turn on the forehand to protect him from moving forward? I don't mean to PULL, just protect him from stepping ahead. Is this the only difference? I've thoroughly read many websites explaining both leg yielding and turn on the forehand but none of them was explaining the difference and quite a few of them had exactly the same instructions on both (except in the turn on the forehand you want the horse to be slightly turned in the direction of the movement). And one more related question if I may... How does the horse know the difference between the turn on the forehand and side pass - is the difference in reins again? (again I found a website that described it very similarly to the turn on the forehand)


Thanks a lot :)
     
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    09-12-2010, 03:56 PM
  #22
Super Moderator
Mumiinek,
(love your avatar image)
Ok, Turn on the forehand vs leg yield . (I won't address sidepass as I don't ride much Western and have never been formally taught sidepass.)
As for LY, it as much, or more, a forward movement as a lateral movement. It is just as important for the horse to take forward steps as it is for him to step over to the side. Let's use LY to the LEFT for this discussion, ok?
Here I am legyielding to the left; I take up a tiny bit more contact on the "inside", (inside of the minute bend), Rt rein and suggest with a "tickle" of my fingers that the horse give and make a very slight bend, really just tucking his jaw to the right . I put my right leg on at the girth and press gently. The outside leg goes back an inch or two and it is there to support the horse and remind it to continue going forward.
The outside rein stays on supportive contact. If the horse is minutely bent to the right, the outside,left rein with be on his neck and thus act as a bit of a "wall" to keep him from going too much sideways. The outside leg also does this. It stays constant on the horse's side draperd there, while the "driving" right leg will be pulsing with each step.
So, I put my active, inside leg on just as the horse's inside leg steps under. Then, when he is stepping the left hind I kind of "hold" him with my left leg (not alowing him to swing to the left but to go forward instead) and "hold" him with my outside rein and think "Forward please". So, I ask basically for one step sideways, one step forward, one step sideways, one step forward . . . My teacher said if your horse loses it's forward and starts to angle outward to much, ditch the LY and reestablish forward thinking and try again. It's kind of asking for a sideways movement and then recieving that energy into the outside hand and channeling it into a forward step. 'over, recieve, over recieve" Sounds vague, I know.
The step over sideways in LY is not very big. The classical teachers of dressage would see little value in LY and would have students spend their time on Shoulder in as the more important trainging aid.
As for Sidepass, someone else will chime in.
     
    09-12-2010, 06:35 PM
  #23
Weanling
Thanks a lot for you response, I will have to read it once or twice again though to get it all as I'm kinda lost in it now But what caught my eye:
Quote:
Originally Posted by tinyliny    
...I put my right leg on at the girth and press gently. The outside leg goes back an inch or two and it is there to support the horse and remind it to continue going forward.
Shouldn't the right leg go behind the girth if I'm moving to the left? I just googled some websites again to make sure I remember it correctly and they all say so, inside leg behind the girth and outside one on the girth. That's what makes me so confused about leg yielding because that's also how you make your horse turn on the forehand. I can also never remember which side is inside and which one outside so it's even more confusing for me And to this all I just also realised the same leg aid is applied to make a horse canter (only then it's the outside leg), I know it is NOT only about the leg behind the girth but to be honest how many horses do you know that are taught to canter when you move your outside leg behind the girth? At least I know quite a few, mine included. Oh and sitting the trot, he doesn't know that thing. Everytime you sit the trot he either stops or goes into canter. Ok not everytime anymore as we're working on it hard but you get what I mean

Any help about all these "behind the girths"? Are they all the same thing you then differ from the other cues by adding other aids (hands, seat etc.) or is there also a difference between each placing of the leg behind the girth (moment, possition, what do I know)? I often find myself reading various how-to articles about horse riding that go like "to make a horse do ... put your leg behind the girth" and I go like "wait, that's what you do to make him ... and ... and ... as well, uh?"
     
    09-12-2010, 06:48 PM
  #24
Weanling
Oh my, I just realised all I've read about leg yielding is exactly how the previous owner of my horse explained to me he'd taught him to canter. Outside leg behind the girth (that one is the inside one in the leg yielding, right?) and slightly squeeze the outside rein (also inside rein in leg yielding) et voilą, he canters. This is hard. Excuse me if I'm digging into it too much, I always tend to do that with things that are complicated enough on their own. I don't even know what I want from you guys anymore, I guess just to tell me it's not all so terrible as it seems to me it is!
     
    09-12-2010, 08:27 PM
  #25
Banned
Quote:
Originally Posted by mumiinek    

Shouldn't the right leg go behind the girth if I'm moving to the left? I just googled some websites again to make sure I remember it correctly and they all say so, inside leg behind the girth and outside one on the girth. That's what makes me so confused about leg yielding because that's also how you make your horse turn on the forehand. I can also never remember which side is inside and which one outside so it's even more confusing for me
The previos poster is pretty well correct and there may be some slight differences.

Here is what happens As the inside leg is put on the horse various things can happen. If the inside leg is too far back the haunches may move over too far and your leg yield turns into a turn on the fore or the horse moves over in some yielding fashion with the rear leading and is a major fault. At the girth is the better position to start with adjustments after depending on how the horse reacts.

Also the outside leg should be position slightly behind the girth as a guard in case the horse's rear does move over too far. Again adjustments can be done as the horse reacts.


Quote:
And to this all I just also realised the same leg aid is applied to make a horse canter (only then it's the outside leg),
These should NOT be canter aids. On my horse the closing of the inside leg only induces the canter and the outside leg remains at the girth to maintain front end position but can be moved elsewhere if problems develope. But the outside leg back as part of GETTING the canter is not a leg aid used to start the canter ( at least on on a well trained dressage horse). For example to switch leads I simply switch legs.


Quote:
I know it is NOT only about the leg behind the girth but to be honest how many horses do you know that are taught to canter when you move your outside leg behind the girth? At least I know quite a few, mine included.
Yes quite a few and at least in dressage these are beginner aids. I have judged many a dressage test giving out 4's for crooked canters because the horse's rear quarters are pushed over to the inside as a result of outside leg aids. They learn pretty quickly to use the inside only.

A student I had could not get a trot half pass on her horse because guess what--half pass aids are outside leg back with inside leg on the girth. The horse cantered every time (as that is how it was taught) and she was so frustrated. Corrected the canter aid to inside leg only and squeeze and no problems occurred after.


So as long as the rider has no intentions of doing anything beyond basic W/T/C and doesn't care whether the horse is crooked or not any aid will do.
     
    09-12-2010, 08:51 PM
  #26
Weanling
Quote:
Originally Posted by Spyder    
A student I had could not get a trot half pass on her horse because guess what--half pass aids are outside leg back with inside leg on the girth. The horse cantered every time (as that is how it was taught) and she was so frustrated. Corrected the canter aid to inside leg only and squeeze and no problems occurred after.
Exactly what I was thinking about.

I also understand the description of leg yielding aids as you described it but then I'm puzzled as to why so many books, websites and even trainers talk about the inside leg behind the girth.

But when it comes to cantering aids... Isn't the outside leg behind the girth supposed to tell the horse which lead to take? As you said you switch legs to tell the horse to change leads, how would you do it if the outside leg isn't behind the girth? Now this is a totally new information for me, I swear in all those years I've been around horses I've only heard about the outside leg behind the girth. Heck I'm being reminded of it almost every day
     
    09-12-2010, 09:59 PM
  #27
Banned
Quote:
Originally Posted by mumiinek    
Exactly what I was thinking about.

I also understand the description of leg yielding aids as you described it but then I'm puzzled as to why so many books, websites and even trainers talk about the inside leg behind the girth.
In a very coarse way you would get some sort of leg yield but if you wanted to get a score near 10 from any judge your horse must be virtually straight. The problem is this is a low level movement and horses at this level are often crooked. Partly because they are naturally crooked and partially because they are man made crooked. Either way the tendency is to overdo aids in a sloppy way to fix this problem. If the center of balance is directly under the rider as it should and you want the horse moving over evenly WHY would an aid be placed in a position that is not with the plumb line of that balance.

Quote:
But when it comes to cantering aids... Isn't the outside leg behind the girth supposed to tell the horse which lead to take? As you said you switch legs to tell the horse to change leads, how would you do it if the outside leg isn't behind the girth? Now this is a totally new information for me, I swear in all those years I've been around horses I've only heard about the outside leg behind the girth. Heck I'm being reminded of it almost every day
Look at it this way. The leg (either one) directs the horse to place its leg to do something the rider wants. If you aid the horse on the outside it acts on the inside leg. If you aid the horse on the inside you act upon the outside leg.

Also take this to be true....no leg aid can influence a grounded leg. So by using the inside leg WHEN needed, you will act upon the outside hind WHEN it is in position to do what you want. If you are a sensitive rider you will know what the hind end is doing and when to act. That is why I said the outside leg for canter is a basic beginner aid. And the real reason trainers say this is because most horses are crooked and will fall to the inside on their shoulder causing the rear to swing outside, so by applying an outside leg behind the girth the expectation is the rear quarters won't fly out when the horse starts the canter. The problem that now occurs is that the quarters can now shift too far inside and you have your crookedness back, only on the opposite side. If you move up in dressage the aids are more sophisticated and unless you have refined the basic gaits leg aids you WILL run into problems.


I am sure you have seen riders make tempi or multiple changes in leads in succession with the rear swinging left and right? And looking at the rider the legs swing too far back when the rider switches leg aids. That is a major fault.

In my case I simply stop the left leg (for left lead) and shift the horse's bend slightly and put on the right leg (there is also a shift in my seat) and instant change, so my leg actually moves very little. My horse is so sensitive that he canters on the first leg that touches him, so if you wanted a left lead, your right leg better not touch him first.
     
    09-13-2010, 10:21 AM
  #28
Yearling
Spyder how do you ask your horse to canter? Im just very curious as to how you do it or how its supposed to b done in the higher levels
     
    09-13-2010, 10:34 AM
  #29
Banned
Quote:
Originally Posted by FoxyRoxy1507    
Spyder how do you ask your horse to canter? Im just very curious as to how you do it or how its supposed to b done in the higher levels

To get a left lead for example.

Slight half halt, sit deeper in my seat extend that deeper contact through my left leg. I rarely ever have to go farther than the squeeze from the hip to my thigh so my lower leg (spur) rarely ever gets to the point of touching him before the canter is started.

Consider this..

To do tempi changes every stride the rider just doesn't have enough time to swing the outside leg back, put on the inside and repeat the for the next change that is occurring under the rider so more quieter aids are required.
     
    09-13-2010, 11:26 AM
  #30
Showing
Quote:
Originally Posted by Spyder    
To get a left lead for example.

Slight half halt, sit deeper in my seat extend that deeper contact through my left leg. I rarely ever have to go farther than the squeeze from the hip to my thigh so my lower leg (spur) rarely ever gets to the point of touching him before the canter is started.
Spyder, let me re-phrase the question asked. How did you TEACH him to canter when just started training him? I'd assume the aids should be quite exaggerated in the beginning.

I was also always taught to put outside leg behind the girth, although I see what you mean. My horse DOES swings her butt inside although I never thought it's because of the outside leg (I'm working on keeping her straight).
     

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