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Western Dressage - Thoughts ?

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        02-19-2013, 10:42 AM
      #401
    Green Broke
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by franknbeans    
    I also would just ask, and this is an honest question-why all the discussion about "bridle horses"? It seems to be being used almost synonymously with WD?
    There was discussion about collection between dressage riders and western riders. I have never ridden dressage and do not know anything about it, so for me to post pics of horses or styles I am familiar with and have them critique them would give a better idea of where they are coming from.
    Everyone was using the word collection, but I think everyone had a different idea of it exactly. If that makes sense...I am not very articulate! LOL!

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by core    
    In my opinion, most of the ridden pics show a horse that isn't correct (in terms of dressage). The poll isn't the highest point, the neck 'breaks' to far back which usually means the horse backed off from the bit instead up and out to the bit.

    The picture of the horse with the saddle on and no rider (Horse without Bruce - last one in series) doesn't show the muscling I'd expect to see over the top of the neck for a horse that is working correctly over its back. The majority of the mass is towards the bottom of the neck. It doesn't have that nice thick bread roll of muscling running along the top of the neck. Not like I'd expect from a horse that's been in training for any period of time.

    The one pic that I really like is the one called "collected". It's on the second row (on my phone) and second in from the left. That looks the most correct of all the pictures where the horse is actively working.

    I don't like the guy's riding style though. He's hunched over in the shoulders, and his lower leg swings quite far forward when riding. To me, that would add a lot of noise to the cues and prevent the subtlety of aids that a Bridled horse would require. Everything I've read about bridle horses suggests that 95-98% of aids are from seat/legs and not through the hand. If that's the case then a swinging lower leg with the hunched rider position would give a lot of conflicting messages to a horse. I'm sure the horse can tune out the swinging leg and bumpy seat, but that defeats the whole idea of what a Bridle horse is supposed to be, doesn't it?
    Posted via Mobile Device
    Thank you, I see what your saying.
    Again, I am not trying to derail this thread, I just want to see what dressage riders see when they look at a western version of collection and western dressage. Of course those are not western dressage pics, but you get the idea. I didn't want to post pics of horses ridden two handed with a lot of contact in a curb bit. That is my issue with WD from what I have seen so far.(only pics, never been to a show)

    (P.S. I too noticed the body position, but only because in the last year or so I have been working hard on fixing mine!)
         
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        02-19-2013, 11:41 AM
      #402
    Foal
    You know, I've found it very difficult to find pictures to express concepts like collection, cadence, etc in western horses because I don't see it in the rail classes, whether morgan or aqha, and the working classes - reining, cutting, and the Ranch Horse classes always post pictures of horses working, mostly at speed. I found a lovely video of a bridle horse trainer using a very correct leg yield to move into a calf to sort it, but such moments are rare - kinda like trying to get pictures of a correct collected canter of an eventer while its on the cross country course. You know they can do it but... Even the training videos all focus on the skills training - how to spin, roll back, etc and not how to get rhythm, suppleness and carriage. Yet I know from talking with judges and trainers that there is a lot of that basic work going on at home in the training pen. But no one wants to post video or pictures of that. It isn't exciting.
         
        02-19-2013, 11:51 AM
      #403
    Trained
    A collected gait per FEI definition isn't very useful to a lot of western riding. I think what a lot of western trainers call collection is what Littauer called "gathering", to distinguish it in the world of jumping from collection. It is a short duration shift in balance to prepare for something else - a sharp turn, for example. I think it would eliminate a lot of confusion if we would leave 'collection' to dressage and the FEI, and find a different word. But that isn't very likely...
    smrobs and COWCHICK77 like this.
         
        02-19-2013, 12:05 PM
      #404
    Foal
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by franknbeans    
    I will say that I find WP in Morgans (as with ANY of the "pleasure" classes with Morgans, honestly) to not look like anything I have ever seen of considered to be a "pleasure"! Tight reins, some in double bridle (one of the so called "pleasure" classes)......granted I don't know a ton about it, but have watched a few, since my niece shows at the world level in Morgan Pleasure.......
    I know, I kind of unexpectedly revived the thread, but I'm fine with that. I like the discussion I'm seeing. No one is being aggressive or looks like their trying to pick fights or deny perfectly valid evidence just for the sake of denying it, so I don't think anything is wrong with reviving it :)

    Morgans are ridden very different from other breeds in pleasure type classes. It's mostly based on confirmation though. In a Morgan, a thick neck that comes high out of the shoulder is preferable and confimationally correct. In a QH, their necks are bred not only to be longer and less arched, but so that they come out of the should at a lower angle. Because of this, Morgans can be collected and in frame in a totally different way than a QH. You said that the reins were tight, but I think you may have witnessed that at lower levels because I've never seen anyone who will win a high level Western Pleasure class with a good, fair judge and tight reins. The following link http://www.morganhorse.com/upload/ph...822western.jpg is one of my favorites to demonstrate what I call a near perfect WP picture. The Man has nice equitation, the horse is in frame and moving off the back end. His neck is beautiful and what I call "collected", and he looks happy with the bit, not gaping and there's no sign of slobber showing he was at any point.

    I was actually sort of on board with you until you said "Double Bridle". Where on earth did you see a Morgan horse, IN a pleasure class, with a double bridle?! I've never seen nor heard of that in my life! XD Do you think you could find a picture?
         
        02-19-2013, 12:07 PM
      #405
    Super Moderator
    I think its going to be inevitable that until WD is well established we're going to see lots of different types of horses ridden by people from very different western and english disciplines 'giving it a go'. We're also going to see lots more variety of breeds involved - though even conventional dressage at the lower to mid level (which in Europe is still dressage and still taken very seriously) we see just about every type and breed there is getting involved and having fun while they learn something new
    I found a couple of pics and have thrown in one of a conventional dressage rider to compare.
    Of course people will find faults with them because that's what people do - but there are pics out there of top riders in all horse sports looking really awful at times - getting it wrong is in no way exclusive
    It would be nice if we could have a thread about WD that was looking for the positive and encouraging people to do something different or find a place in western riding that previously didnt exist for them.
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        02-19-2013, 12:41 PM
      #406
    Green Broke
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by bsms    
    A collected gait per FEI definition isn't very useful to a lot of western riding. I think what a lot of western trainers call collection is what Littauer called "gathering", to distinguish it in the world of jumping from collection. It is a short duration shift in balance to prepare for something else - a sharp turn, for example. I think it would eliminate a lot of confusion if we would leave 'collection' to dressage and the FEI, and find a different word. But that isn't very likely...
    I can identify with this comment. (from an outside horse point of view)
    It just is not realistic to ask a horse to trot a large chunk of ground "collected" while checking cows, but asking to "gather" himself before turning one down the fence or sorting is realistic.
    smrobs and boots like this.
         
        02-19-2013, 12:50 PM
      #407
    Super Moderator
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by COWCHICK77    
    I can identify with this comment. (from an outside horse point of view)
    It just is not realistic to ask a horse to trot a large chunk of ground "collected" while checking cows, but asking to "gather" himself before turning one down the fence or sorting is realistic.
    I think you can apply this to a lot of things - you might not see the finesse but the action is still there
    I had a pony that was the tops in pony club dressage and mounted games - seems like an odd combination but it was her ability to be able to extend and collect up at a touch and be really balanced that made her so agile and nippy around the posts
    COWCHICK77 likes this.
         
        02-19-2013, 12:54 PM
      #408
    Trained
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by COWCHICK77    
    I can identify with this comment. (from an outside horse point of view)
    It just is not realistic to ask a horse to trot a large chunk of ground "collected" while checking cows, but asking to "gather" himself before turning one down the fence or sorting is realistic.
    This is exactly why I so agree with gathering as expression, not collection. The German word for it is VERSAMMLUNG = gathering
    Collection means SAMMLUNG...a collection of pictures, for example....collectibles.
    Versammlung instead is a gathering of people, a meeting of members of a club,

    I think collection isn't the right word to translate Versammlung

    Thanks, bsms, for bringing this up and allowing me to brainstorm
    COWCHICK77 likes this.
         
        02-19-2013, 01:49 PM
      #409
    Trained
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Opal    
    I know, I kind of unexpectedly revived the thread, but I'm fine with that. I like the discussion I'm seeing. No one is being aggressive or looks like their trying to pick fights or deny perfectly valid evidence just for the sake of denying it, so I don't think anything is wrong with reviving it :)

    Morgans are ridden very different from other breeds in pleasure type classes. It's mostly based on confirmation though. In a Morgan, a thick neck that comes high out of the shoulder is preferable and confimationally correct. In a QH, their necks are bred not only to be longer and less arched, but so that they come out of the should at a lower angle. Because of this, Morgans can be collected and in frame in a totally different way than a QH. You said that the reins were tight, but I think you may have witnessed that at lower levels because I've never seen anyone who will win a high level Western Pleasure class with a good, fair judge and tight reins. The following link http://www.morganhorse.com/upload/ph...822western.jpg is one of my favorites to demonstrate what I call a near perfect WP picture. The Man has nice equitation, the horse is in frame and moving off the back end. His neck is beautiful and what I call "collected", and he looks happy with the bit, not gaping and there's no sign of slobber showing he was at any point.

    I was actually sort of on board with you until you said "Double Bridle". Where on earth did you see a Morgan horse, IN a pleasure class, with a double bridle?! I've never seen nor heard of that in my life! XD Do you think you could find a picture?
    There are several classes I have watched my niece in, only one was western, and that did not have the tight reins or double bridle. I think the double bridle thing was maybe park seat pleasure? Then the tight reins was something like "hunt seat pleasure".......which with tight reins went against everything I always learned about in H/J.. I go watch her......I don't ask a lot of questions, and have never been a fan of saddleseat, which she does a lot of.......totally foreign to me........and not sure where in the family tree she got this from-dad was a cowboy. If it is judged on confirmation that makes more sense to me.
         
        02-19-2013, 02:00 PM
      #410
    Foal
    @Frankenbeans

    Oh, well that makes a lot more sense. You use a double bridle in park horse classes, everyone does. It's required. Also, of course the reins are going to be tight in Huntseat classes, that's how the horses are ridden. There should be a direct line of contact from the mouth and all the way up the forearm before the rider's arm bends at the elbow. Using and double bridle in Park classes or having tighter reins in Huntseat classes are expected and looked for, and there's abo****ely nothing wrong with either.
         

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