Gotta share re Dressage Instructor - Page 14
 
 

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Gotta share re Dressage Instructor

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        11-22-2013, 09:42 AM
      #131
    Super Moderator
    When you start out at low level you don't ride with such a long stirrup as in the pic you've posted because most people will post the trot - and really stirrup length has nothing at all to do with the style and method of riding we now call Dressage
    Larry Trocha in this 'snip' I took from one of his videos has a seat position that is hardly any different to a general purpose English seat - and shorter stirrups than seen in many western riders
    Even top level dressage riders don't have their legs glued to one place all the time - your legs and foot position will move according to what you're asking the horse to do
    Be careful not to believe everything that artists and sculptors depict - they were famed for using a lot of poetic licence - and there has always been a desire to show the knights of old as romantic figures charging into battle on their handsome steeds - the reality of struggling through deep mud and terrible ground made the type of horse needed very different. Not only did the horse need the strength to carry the extra weight of tack, armour and weapons on this ground they also had to be able to withstand the impact of the blows they and their riders had to take from an opponent
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        11-22-2013, 11:34 AM
      #132
    Trained
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jaydee    
    When you start out at low level you don't ride with such a long stirrup as in the pic you've posted because most people will post the trot - and really stirrup length has nothing at all to do with the style and method of riding we now call Dressage

    The point of the picture has nothing to do with stirrup length. The point is WHERE you want to absorb the motion of the horse. In dressage, your vertical position requires the motion be absorbed in the small of the back...but our backs aren't built to be shock absorbers. It takes a good athlete to flex with the shock there, instead of using the hinge - the waist & hips - that we all have and can use. It is just a harder way of doing things, which is why seeing it impresses other riders.

    Larry Trocha in this 'snip' I took from one of his videos has a seat position that is hardly any different to a general purpose English seat - and shorter stirrups than seen in many western riders

    Larry Trocha's advice on saddles is to get the stirrups as far forward as they will go. If you shorten the stirrups, it tends to force the heel back...which is fine, if you want. It ALSO works to have the lower leg forward. Doing so shifts your weight forward (a more forward balance), puts more weight on your thighs and less on your butt, and can help keep a horse moving straight, which isn't a big goal in cutting or reining but which can be a very good thing on a trail with a spooky horse.

    My wife took this picture a couple of days ago as Mia and I experimented with a new (used) western saddle - a style of saddle I hadn't been in for several years. I'm not advocating one spend all their time with their heels way forward, but there is nothing magical about having it under your hip. And for a stop (or a horse who may stop without being asked), having the heels forward and heels down helps keep you steady. FWIW, I lowered the stirrups one hole a few minutes later, which helped. Mia was still puzzled at the different feel, since this saddle is 4 inches longer and has a very different tree than what she is used to using. She was more relaxed on our next ride.



    The saddle is NOT designed to put the heel under your hip. I usually advocate riding the saddle instead of fighting it - butt in the lowest part of the seat, and stirrup straps (fenders) hanging straight down. Then adjust your leg for what you want at a given time. Otherwise you spend the ride fighting gravity.



    Even top level dressage riders don't have their legs glued to one place all the time - your legs and foot position will move according to what you're asking the horse to do

    True. And thus Littauer was right - the judge of your position is "a) are you in fluid balance and rhythm with your horse or not? B) does your seat enable you to control your horse efficiently?" There is nothing magic about shoulder - hip - heel. It all depends on the saddle, the horse, and what you ARE doing and what you EXPECT to be doing in a few seconds. Shoulder - hip - heel is not proper, unless one adds "for what".


    Your position is not static, but always changing.



    But please note - it is EASIER to absorb the horse's motion with your hips and waist than to use the small of your back. The latter makes your riding look effortless. Like gymnastics, it is all about making the difficult LOOK easy!

    Be careful not to believe everything that artists and sculptors depict - they were famed for using a lot of poetic licence - and there has always been a desire to show the knights of old as romantic figures charging into battle on their handsome steeds - the reality of struggling through deep mud and terrible ground made the type of horse needed very different. Not only did the horse need the strength to carry the extra weight of tack, armour and weapons on this ground they also had to be able to withstand the impact of the blows they and their riders had to take from an opponent

    The armor plate fits a modern riding horse of around 15 hands. The one author who tried putting actual armor plate on her horses had her best fit with he 14.2 Arabian. The horseshoes used match up well with a modern riding horse of around 15 hands. At a time when the normal horse ran around 13 hands (the size of my little mustang), 15 hands looked pretty "great". Battle armor ran 40-70 lbs, which is less than I wore in Afghanistan in 2007.

    Again: "Research undertaken at the Museum of London, using literary, pictorial and archaeological sources, supports military horses of 14-15 hands (56 to 60 inches (140 to 150 cm)), distinguished from a riding horse by its strength and skill, rather than its size.[45] This average does not seem to vary greatly across the medieval period." - Wiki, which reflects the information in several respected books about medieval horses in war.

    How big does the horse need to be to carry a 240 lb rider? Now figure a fit 180 lb man with 50 lbs of armor and some clothing...about 240 lbs. There was no need for massive horses. My 700 lb mustang can carry my 175 lbs and 35 lb saddle and haul butt if he wants to. Quarter Horses are bred to handle the shock of a steer hitting the end of a rope tied to the saddle, which is more stress than one would get from a lance.
    My comments in bold.
         
        11-22-2013, 06:56 PM
      #133
    Yearling
    Boy, it's taken all these years to decipher sitting trot using waist and hips vs small of back. I think small of back takes a very long time to develop. And you have to use it.

    I always admire that nice crease on a quarter horse's butt where the muscle has built up. I never thought it came from riding all strung out with feet behind as a green horse. I assumed it came from a horse working off his hind end. And how is head set taught?
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        11-23-2013, 11:39 AM
      #134
    Super Moderator
    I will repeat - you don't have to ride 'sitting trot' in low level dressage and there are thousands of people that are out there competing in low level dressage tests this weekend that will never go beyond that for many different reasons but they still enjoy what they do, put a lot of effort into it and are valued amongst the dressage community
    The body of dressage is like a pyramid that's much larger on the bottom level but equally important because it supports the rest of the unit
    The American Indians rode in an upright position only leaning forward in gallop. If you ever rode bareback as a child then you quickly learnt that at the walk and slower trot that was most comfortable and a good way to control the horses movement - at a long extended trot it was easier to lean back, canter is easier to sit in an upright position because its easier to control direction and speed and gallop is easier to ride when leaning forward - but when you want to slow the horse down you sit back up
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        11-25-2013, 11:29 PM
      #135
    Foal
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by princessfluffybritches    
    Boy, it's taken all these years to decipher sitting trot using waist and hips vs small of back. I think small of back takes a very long time to develop. And you have to use it.

    I always admire that nice crease on a quarter horse's butt where the muscle has built up. I never thought it came from riding all strung out with feet behind as a green horse. I assumed it came from a horse working off his hind end. And how is head set taught?
    The crease on the well developed hip of a qh is natural, however it will be enhanced if you trot alot. I rarely ask my horses to "use the hind end" and they have very well developed butts. I also pull logs, both forwards and backwards, and at a walk and trot; this is done to keep them in shape for pulling or stopping the cow, and to give them a good, low key workout.

    As for teaching the headset, we really don't. We allow the horse to carry their head where it is best for them to complete the task at hand. However, when backing/stopping I want the head lower and tucked somewhat(but not vertical), therefore the horse has weight on the fore as well as the hind end---in order to be able to move in any direction without having to shift weight first. I also want them to have their nose pointed in the direction of a turn. Other than that, I don't really care about how they choose to carry their head. I feel they know better than I do what is comfortable for them for the task at hand.
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        12-02-2013, 09:29 PM
      #136
    Foal
    First, let's not be passive aggressive and snobby. It was clear what the poster meant by "Dressage/dressage". Let's be informative and supportive here.

    As for the original question, while don't know if my Rocky Mountain Horse has what it takes in confirmation or otherwise to be a high-level competitor in Dressage (nor do I want him to), he does perform and benefit from the very basics in the discipline. He benefits from collection, rounding out his back, keeping from the hollow back, etc. If done and taught correctly, in my humble opinion, I say it can be done - and why not! Good luck and have fun.
         
        12-21-2013, 06:45 AM
      #137
    Weanling
    I use dressage training to strengthen, round, flex, etc. etc. etc. for horse and rider regardless of breed of horse. BUt I agree also that if the goal is upper Dressage then a more suitable Dressage horse would do better. Remember form vs function.

    I didi not know that the USDF has test specific for gaited animals.......learn something new every day.
         
        12-21-2013, 07:16 AM
      #138
    Weanling
    I actually looked back at the post.......you all make my brain ache. Think some are way over thinking it all.
         
        12-21-2013, 09:36 PM
      #139
    Yearling
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ZaneyZanne123    
    I use dressage training to strengthen, round, flex, etc. etc. etc. for horse and rider regardless of breed of horse. BUt I agree also that if the goal is upper Dressage then a more suitable Dressage horse would do better. Remember form vs function.

    I didi not know that the USDF has test specific for gaited animals.......learn something new every day.
    Unless something has changed in the last 30 days USDF does NOT have tests specific for gaited animals.

    There are several iterations of "gaited dressage tests" and some of them are bases uopn, or even copied from, USDF tests. They are not, however, USDF tests.

    G.
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        12-22-2013, 01:35 AM
      #140
    Weanling
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Guilherme    
    Unless something has changed in the last 30 days USDF does NOT have tests specific for gaited animals.

    There are several iterations of "gaited dressage tests" and some of them are bases uopn, or even copied from, USDF tests. They are not, however, USDF tests.

    G.
    I must have misunderstood one of the post I read. I thought someone stated that there are USDF gaited horse dressage test out there. Thanks for clarifying that.
         

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