Why is Puissance basically Dressage? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 25 Old 05-18-2014, 02:39 PM Thread Starter
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Why is Puissance basically Dressage?

So my instructor asked me what type of riding I would like to pursue eventually and I told her that Puissance really interests me.

and she says, "ohhh, so basically you want to do dressage, because puissance essentially, is just dressage"

Could someone explain to me this statement? Why is Puissance basically dressage?
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post #2 of 25 Old 05-18-2014, 02:44 PM
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Puissance is a type of showjumping.

Showjumping [PROPERLY] is dressage with speedbumps.

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post #3 of 25 Old 05-18-2014, 02:54 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blue eyed pony View Post
Puissance is a type of showjumping.

Showjumping [PROPERLY] is dressage with speedbumps.


I thought Dressage was performing a sequence of very difficult maneuvers to a music with the best style (like a floor performance in gymnastics)?

Isn't Puissance whoever can jump the highest?
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post #4 of 25 Old 05-18-2014, 02:54 PM
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Well yes, showjumping is dressage with some obstacles along the way.
In puissance you have 1-3 fences overall. 2 oh those being the warm up fences. So you essentially have one real jumping effort in the whole arena. If your lead up to that fence is crooked or zig zagging everywhere etc etc you are not going to stand a very good chance of clearing the fence. The horse also needs to be round and collected in order to get the best bouncy canter. So yep... Dressage ;)
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post #5 of 25 Old 05-18-2014, 02:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by horsecv View Post
I thought Dressage was performing a sequence of very difficult maneuvers to a music with the best style (like a floor performance in gymnastics)?

Isn't Puissance whoever can jump the highest?
Showjumpers are trained highly in dressage before all else. Dressage is also not always to music and the manoeuvres are not always massively difficult.
It is about who can jump the highest but how can the horse possibly jump a great height if he is flat and hollow and unresponsive?
The puissance winners are usually the ones with the best dressage base to build up from.
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post #6 of 25 Old 05-18-2014, 03:05 PM Thread Starter
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Wow, all of this information has basically just rocked my world.

Does all this information also apply to jumpers? (where you jump a series of obstacles under a certain amount of time, with the least amount of faults, and then there is a jumpoff).

This information is rocking my world because in my lessons all we do is jump, we've never addressed any sort of dressage fundamentals.
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post #7 of 25 Old 05-18-2014, 03:07 PM
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Dressage applies to absolutely everything.
If all you do is jumping... I would find a new trainer. The majority of sjers only do dressage. Jumping every now and again to keep the horses in practise
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post #8 of 25 Old 05-18-2014, 03:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by horsecv View Post
I thought Dressage was performing a sequence of very difficult maneuvers to a music with the best style (like a floor performance in gymnastics)?

Isn't Puissance whoever can jump the highest?
That's Kur, or in the lower levels, freestyle. Dressage in and of itself is not centered around music. The word is derived from the French for "training". Music just makes it a bit more fun to watch.

Yes, Puissance is who can jump the highest [also a French word, I can't remember what it means]. But without a solid dressage foundation, your horse doesn't have much [any] training, will be hard to control, and won't know how to use himself properly. If he doesn't know how to use himself properly, how can he get off the ground to jump really high? If you can't lengthen and shorten his strides while keeping him pushing from behind, how can you get him to a good takeoff spot so that he can get all his legs clear over the fence? He can't do it if you get a bad spot, not when the fence gets really big.

Dressage is beneficial to ANY discipline and crucial to most English disciplines! My horse is going to be my showjumper when she's older, but she's my dressage horse now, because she needs dressage training first.

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post #9 of 25 Old 05-18-2014, 04:16 PM
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This is a Puissance class at top level - Ben Maher currently amongst the top competitors in the game worldwide
Notice how collected his horse is to create maximum energy - and that for a lot of the time he rides in 'full seat' at the canter to be able to do that
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PtDiDd8781I
Then compare with a top hunter classic competitor and the horse has far less collection and impulsion because the courses are very different
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cgXm9eR0lb0
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post #10 of 25 Old 05-18-2014, 05:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CandyCanes View Post
Well yes, showjumping is dressage with some obstacles along the way.
In puissance you have 1-3 fences overall. 2 oh those being the warm up fences. So you essentially have one real jumping effort in the whole arena. If your lead up to that fence is crooked or zig zagging everywhere etc etc you are not going to stand a very good chance of clearing the fence. The horse also needs to be round and collected in order to get the best bouncy canter. So yep... Dressage ;)
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In correct!

The first round of a Puissance has six or seven large fences. All fences count in the first couple of rounds. Each round a fence is removed and the rest made higher and wider until there is a smaller first fence, which I believe now still counts if it is knocked down, the triple bar and the wall.

Some riders have a horse that 'specialises' in Puissance but no order does just those classes. You often find that after such a class the rider will take the horse in a speed class where the fences are lower, so it is not worried about the stress of large heights.

As for dressage, agreed that show jumpers are well schooled, but in a different way to pure dressage horses. Most are ridden frequently in draw reins, they can lengthen and shorten a stride easily from the rider's seat and the rider can put any of his horse's feet on a dime!

Going into a big wall the horse is kept on a shorter stride until three or four strides away from the fence whereby most riders allow them to move faster and longer, though not stretched out.

Not a class I particularly like!
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