Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Fort Lauderdale, FL
I totally disagree, a good gait is a good gait no matter if it is a trot or another gait.
All gaits have defined movements and purity of gait, I just honestly think it is this very narrow idea that anything other than a trot is garbage, and nothing could be further from the truth. All true gaited horse trainers agree on what a good gait is, and yes, opinions can be subjective, but we have standards for the gaits all written down in black and white. There are a few books that go into the mechanics of gait, what the gait looks like, and how it should feel, so if judges cannot understand the footfall than maybe they need more training.
I find properly riding a gaited horse requires much more intuneness to have proper impulse and rhythm of gait, much harder than a simple trot.
Gaited dressage will be nothing but a good thing for gaited riders and gaited horses, and eventually the haters will have to accept that these are just horses and only thing separating them is just that gaited horses have extra gaits that make them so much smoother to ride.
Gaited horses have a very long and storied history, they were the horse of choice before carriages, when people rode from Point A to Point B. I have never understood why trotting horses (and trotting comes from the Latin word for torture by the way :) ) get put on a pedestal as the ideal horse and the trot the ideal gait. Outside of driving, the trot is hard on horses and hard on riders, that was the reason why gaited horses were so popular.
Gaited horses do have a reputation as being "easy" and yes, a good gaited horse can make the rider look good even if they don't deserve it. Yet, when a gaited horse and rider team hit that perfect moment when they are in tune and the gait is driving from behind it is just as beautiful than a trotting horse and rider.