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Western Dressage - Thoughts ?

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        02-19-2013, 07:17 PM
      #411
    Foal
    Quote:
    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...
    In dressage terms it doesn't matter. It isn't the length of time is done, but the bio-mechanics of how the horse does it that makes it collection or not collection. Check, gather, or maintained, it's how the horse tucks the pelvis, reaches further under the body and uses the neck to create passive tension on the ligaments of the back and neck. Without that element of the effect on the back, it doesn't matter if the head is up, face at the vertical and the horse is trotting in place. It's still not collected. OTOH if it's all there for two strides to prepare for a jump or a turn, it is collected.

    That said, I agree that no working horse, whether it's a hunter, driving horse, event horse or cow horse should stay in collection all the time. Where maintained collection comes in for the working horse is like a work out at the gym. The strength gained by the exercise can be used for other things.
    bsms and boots like this.
         
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        02-21-2013, 04:43 PM
      #412
    Weanling
    What are your thoughts on this horse? I'm still learning what a bridle horse is exactly supposed to be. Is this an accurate demonstration of a good bridle horse?
         
        02-21-2013, 05:48 PM
      #413
    Yearling
    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?
    I have to step in here for a second to comment on the bold. Collection entails correct use of back, and from all the Morgan WP horses I've seen up close and personal being shown in a WP class....there was no use of back. The backs were dropped and hollow. You CAN'T have collection without a lifted back....sorry.
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        02-21-2013, 06:55 PM
      #414
    Foal
    @Gotadun
    I see your point, but I guess what my trainer always called collection is more, by definition, being "in frame" as opposed to the dressage definition of collection :)
    I don't think that the quote worked so well for what you were saying though, because all I was saying in my comment was that a Morgan (any horse can collect-- I wasn't refering to WP or any specific discipline, just collection in general regardless of WD or anything else) collects differently than a QH just based on confirmation and build. A Horse with a neck that comes high out of the shoulders and a shorter back is going to look a little different when collected, and I mean the exact definition of collection as defined by the USDF completely disregarding anything else I said regarding the definition of collection :) Does that make more sense?
         
        02-21-2013, 07:58 PM
      #415
    Yearling
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Opal    
    @Gotadun
    I see your point, but I guess what my trainer always called collection is more, by definition, being "in frame" as opposed to the dressage definition of collection :)
    I don't think that the quote worked so well for what you were saying though, because all I was saying in my comment was that a Morgan (any horse can collect-- I wasn't refering to WP or any specific discipline, just collection in general regardless of WD or anything else) collects differently than a QH just based on confirmation and build. A Horse with a neck that comes high out of the shoulders and a shorter back is going to look a little different when collected, and I mean the exact definition of collection as defined by the USDF completely disregarding anything else I said regarding the definition of collection :) Does that make more sense?
    And I see your point too...but that is where people often mistake "frame" for collection. I actually hate the word "frame" as much as I hate the word "head set". Most of the people that use the word "frame" are using a visualization of what the horse "looks" like. And then...the horse is USUALLY in a false "frame"...forced into it however, the horse is not using it's body at all.

    And yes, ALL horses can collect to some point given their conformation and training, but it's about use of back and that's a big part of it. IMO, the neck is the last thing I look at. Example, with ASB's, the neck is up and straight out of the shoulder and wither..everything is up/down and "contained" in movement....however, they don't concern themselves with use of back and hind end...hence what they think LOOKS like collection, really isn't at all.
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        02-21-2013, 08:05 PM
      #416
    Yearling
    And Opal...please don't think I'm being snarky...but the Arab, ASB, and Morgan show people are most interested in "animation" from their horses then correct use of body. Don't get me wrong...I LOVE that animation as I have owned Arabs, Morgans and worked with ASB's! There's nothing like the raw power of a 5 gaited ASB. Then I went QH a few decades ago.

    I'm glad that you have found WD to your liking and I wish you luck with it. For me, I have no use for it and what I have seen so far has not impressed me and is not Dressage at all. It's like a longer Horsemanship pattern, and I do that already at AQHA shows, one handed in a shanked bit, on a loose rein. Now THAT shows how well trained a western horse is in a pattern because you aren't in the horse's mouth. The horse has learned to pick up that bit and pack it and work off seat and leg.
         
        02-21-2013, 08:14 PM
      #417
    Foal
    @Gotadun
    Yeah, I totally agree with what you are saying.
    Although, when I am practicing collecting, the main idea is to get my horse to step under himself and really engage his hindquarters. I can always feel when he does this, and what I always understood as collecting was that feeling where he engages his haunches and his poll becomes the highest point. I practice this when I ride, but I've (believe it or not) never gotten to see a video of my own riding, so I'm not sure if it's correct or not. After having a lovely discussion with everyone on here, I'm not sure that what I was doing previous is correct for collection.

    Oh no, I don't think you're being snarky at all :) If anything, I'm just striving to further my knowledge and understanding, not prove anything to be true or false about WD. I just want to know how I can improve my own concept of things, and understand other peoples points of view and thoughts on the matter :) As long as nobody is rude or demeaning to me about what I do, then I have no problem discussing WD positively or negatively with anyone :)

    "Hotblooded" breeds are always interested more in animation, but that's one of the good things I've found in WD is that the way I ride/the way my trainer teaches it and what not is trying to encourage good use of body rather than just "looking good". There's a lot of things in WD I don't particularly agree with or like either, but I try to see the good things and the potential in it, and it really is the basic ideas and concepts that I believe are the good things in WD as opposed to what I'm observing :) It's just really hard to find pictures that are a good example of what WD SHOULD be, as opposed to what it is right now.
         
        02-21-2013, 09:20 PM
      #418
    Trained
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Tessa7707    
    What are your thoughts on this horse? I'm still learning what a bridle horse is exactly supposed to be. Is this an accurate demonstration of a good bridle horse?
    Vaquero Bridle Horse Sale / Sold - YouTube
    I hate the swishing tail!!!!
    I am not a big fan of this guy, just my opinion there are some that do like him.
    As far as YouTube videos available I like Martin Black better for using horses. But also look up Richard Caldwell.
    deserthorsewoman and boots like this.
         
        02-25-2013, 02:22 PM
      #419
    Foal
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by COWCHICK77    
    I hate the swishing tail!!!!
    I am not a big fan of this guy, just my opinion there are some that do like him.
    As far as YouTube videos available I like Martin Black better for using horses. But also look up Richard Caldwell.
    His tail wasn't swishing TOO much, and I know a good lot of horses from all disciplines which swish their tails. My horse (and a ton of other horses) swish their tails when cued for a canter. I don't think swishing tail makes or breaks a horse since it can be a variety of different things that causes a horse to swish their tail.

    That being said, I'd be curious to see what someone who's familiar with bridle horses has to say about the horse.
         
        02-25-2013, 02:36 PM
      #420
    Foal
    His tail is swishing in reaction to the spur, which shows tension. We see a lot of tail swishing in dressage tests. The horse loses points every time it happens. Yes, tension and therefore tail swishing can be caused by a lot of things, but I've seen lovely tests and exhibitions much longer than this where the horse never swished his tail. The horse should not react with tension to aids from the rider. To me it is a big minus in performance. This horse isn't really too bad, but it's there.
    deserthorsewoman likes this.
         

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