New world record... opinions? - Page 2

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New world record... opinions?

This is a discussion on New world record... opinions? within the Dressage forums, part of the English Riding category

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    12-28-2009, 03:26 AM
Green Broke
Who is to say he was trained using rolkur??Toto that is, not the trainer himself.
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    12-28-2009, 03:30 AM
Originally Posted by Honeysuga    
Who is to say he was trained using rolkur??Toto that is, not the trainer himself.
Just look at the horse's body. The way he moves, the way he's built, how tense he is. Honestly, I don't know how you can't see it.
    12-28-2009, 04:54 AM
I find these responses a little upsetting, but very typical of how everyone thinks of dressage now. "Wow he's flashy, he has really spectacular paces, he's PERFECT!".
Yep, man is that horse flashy, he's black, has a HUGE neck on him and his front legs look like their about to fly to the moon. But maybe.... watch it again. Cover his front end. He looks like a pony club horse hald of the test.
Yep he's got lovely piaffe/passage etc. But he is just So tight, I was under the impression that dressage was intended to promote a loose, swinging back? Well I did not see that back relax ONCE in that test, not once, not in any test I have seen of theirs. Yes he is at Grand Prix where a certain degree of tension is needed to 'pull off' these movements of intense collection, but the back should still swing. This horse moves like an flashy, uneducated TB. All legs, no back. They look spectacular, but now where near correct and flowing.

Someone said a few posts above that they do not like to critique riders at a level they have not reached themselves. Fair enough. But this is why dressage has no future, how is it meant to revert back to the original principals when a soft, flowing, correct test scores so low compared to a flashy, tense test? Everyone now strives for placings, for a few bits of material to show off and maybe if you lucky a bag of feed or such. It is just sad.
No I have not ridden at that level, but I have ridden alot of the FEI movements such as tempi changes, most of the lateral work, canter pirouettes, trot/canter half pass and have dabbled in piaffe/passage on my coaches FEI horse. I KNOW how extremely difficult these are to master. But what upsets me is that people are so focussed on getting the front end flashy, that they really don't care about what the hind end is going.

Edward Gal is a very good rider, but unfortunatly he has also because part of the modern dressage, winning is everything scene, at the cost of losing the basic foundations of what dressage is about. You want to see a soft, supple, relaxed horse at Grand Prix? Go look up some videos of Hubertus Schmidt. He has taken more horses to Grand Prix than just about any other rider out there in the elite circuit right now, yet he very rarely gets a look in. Why?? Because he doesn't ride the flashy, wall climbing horses with amazing front ends and 'guinee pig' backsides. And that doesn't score well. His horses go so beautifully, but that just don't look flashy, they don't make dressage a spectator sport. To the uneducated audience, of course the flashy tense horse is going to be the one that should be the winner in their eyes, the soft, relaxed, correct horse is 'boring'. Dressage seems to be taking a turn to becoming mroe spectator orientated by the looks of it.
    12-28-2009, 11:24 AM
He actually is trained with rollkur--there are several clips of it on the internet that I've seen myself. Search the COTH boards.

And yes, he is behind the vertical a majority of the time--the poll is not the highest point.When you are looking straight on and can see his poll and then the neck behind it, he is behind the vertical.

Watch his head bob when the trot gets slower--this is the reason why he has a massive front end. He is pushing off the ground with his front legs and lifting with his neck. There should be no bob of the head at the trot--all of you know this.

He doesn't sit at all in the piaffe, he just moves his legs. Kind of like how a WP moves his legs in the cadence of a lope, but there is no actual lope motion. This is what the piaffe looks like when taught as a clever trick.

What is this? Behind the vertical, high rump, everything out in front and nothing behind.

Still behind the vertical, rump high, angles not matching...

Nothing behind, again.

Huge impurity of the trot, with the hind hitting the ground far further than the front, making the trot a 4-beat gait. A sign of tension (which, when you look at his back and neck, is expected). Toe flicking, which is a sign of exhausted muscles.

Please note the use of the curb in these extended trot photos. It should never be perpendicular with the horse's mouth. A curb, with no pressure on it, should rest like this:

Compare to the usage of the curb (which is to refine and lift lightly...). Also compare to the use of Anky's curb, if you'd like. That's what qualifies to me as 'deathgrip'.

There are many many pictures like the ones I have shown above. Everyone can take a bad picture. There is no doubt this horse is talented, but this is what modern dressage does to a talented horse. Please look at other tests where Totilas explodes for one or two movements, earning 1s, 2s, and 3s. A horse at this level should have no 'explosions'.

There are times, in tests with talented horses and rollkur riders, where the horse attempts to lift his head and the base of his neck and work the way he is supposed to--but these moments are limited to a stride or two before the ride clamps back on the reins. There should never be as much head and neck movement in a test at the trot that we see--this is an uncomfortable horse, this is a horse trying to raise the base of his neck, this is what a horse looks like when he is pulled into contact.

Please look to the walk portion of this test. The horse immediately drops far behind the vertical because there is no 'push' to jam his head up. Watch the rider try to jerk him back up (slightly), attempting to not be seen by the judges, but not wanting his horse to look like a macaroni noodle.

Watch at the riders hands come forward and out to the sides. Watch how the horse wants no parts of reaching into the contact; rather this horse is being 'funneled' down. Ask any western pleasure rider--we all know how to funnel a horse's head and neck down. And that's exactly what this rider is doing--he is keeping the contact, because at this high a level... apparently it's not the horse's job anymore.

It's a shame what modern dressage has produced; and that flash is all people can see.
    12-28-2009, 11:32 AM
Ah, here we go.

A training clinic with the pair. Looks a lot like rollkur to me.

Actually, with the tail swishing and the mouth gaping, looks like Anky's rides, too.

Compare to the horse's movement in the first few minutes of this video--he looks NOTHING like how they show him, does he? All artifical, rollkur-induced movement. Take a good look at the hind end and what happens to it the more the head is pulled back.

    12-28-2009, 12:32 PM
Finally, people who see it too. And those videos, great find. Can we say, "locked hands"?

If you want to see a quality piaffe, check out Balagur and Alexandra Korelova (their really good video from this year was deleted, but you can still get the idea). True that both horse and rider look a little nervous and tense, and given Balagur's history and his breed being Orlov Trotter, to the blind eye they don't look like much. But this horse is actually pushing from his hind and she's allowed him to move his head distinctly above the vertical so that he has the freedom and space to actually get on his hind end and do a good piaffe. They were getting tens with this movement at CHIO '09. I love this horse and rider.
A still:
    12-28-2009, 12:33 PM
Im not a dressage rider and I'm sure not riding at this level, but I don't understand why he got such a high score...
Seemed like the horse moved with all leg and no back. Makes it look flashy, sure, but I didn't think that was the point
    12-28-2009, 12:35 PM
Originally Posted by Spastic_Dove    
Im not a dressage rider and I'm sure not riding at this level, but I don't understand why he got such a high score...
Seemed like the horse moved with all leg and no back. Makes it look flashy, sure, but I didn't think that was the point
It definitely shouldn't be the point. I found his movement ridiculous, personally.
    12-28-2009, 12:40 PM
Green Broke
While it was a very lovely ride indeed, I don't think it deserved a 92%. I see this happening in eventing too. People have to get lower and lower scores (higher in "real" dressage) to get a decent placing. Ten years ago, a 35 would have put you at the top of the pack in eventing. Now, it's a the low 20's. Same with dressage, looks like its everywhere :/ I wouldn't call it corrupt or lax judging, but something is definitely happening.
    12-28-2009, 01:08 PM
I enjoyed watching the little white horse, but at least in the video I watched, he was not pushing from behind in his piaffe. :( all of the 'bounce' and suspension was in the hind end; there was no suspension in the front at all--meaning all the weight is in the front so that the hind end can 'bounce'. His hind legs come underneath his body, but at the sacrifice of tipping his body forward--as you can see in the still, his front leg is not straight.

A very cute pair though, and certainly the loosest I have seen dressage reins on a horse at that level.

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