How do i tell if a horse is moving nicely ?

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How do i tell if a horse is moving nicely ?

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  • How to tell if a horse is engaged

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  • 1 Post By Copperhead
  • 1 Post By tinyliny

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    02-15-2013, 06:32 AM
How do i tell if a horse is moving nicely ?

Ok so I have forgotten if I made a post about this previously, but since there is all this new thing in Victoria of in dressage comps to have a horse carry their head higher, preferably the poll being the highest point and so I have been trying a little bit harder to have my horses poll the highest point, because he is an eventing horse.

And besides that is it bad to try to rush in having a horses poll the highest point ? I read Equestrian Life (Aussie horse magazine) and this professional or some one experienced in important competitions, spoke a little about it and said that rushing a horse to have their poll the highest point is negative on the horses health referring to hoe it can be bad for their back muscles. I forgot how to tell if a horse is so called on the bit ? Like the way their hooves are level or something in that sense. Some videos and stuff would be great to talk about.

Ok I also love science, so if their is any science behind a horse being on the bit or in a good frame could you please share that sort of stuff ?
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    02-15-2013, 10:44 AM
A horse's head should NOT be "in frame" if the horse's hind end is not engaged. And yes, it can put a lot of strain on a horse if the hind end muscles are not there to support the horse. Dressage is not about headset. If you want to look at some videos, looke up Jane Savoie on youtube and find yourself a trainer who is trained in dressage.

I would strongly recommend taking some lessons on a school master horse so you can feel the difference between a horse that is trained and one that is not. In order to get your horse engage its hind end, you must know what it feels like. You can do a lot of damage to a horse doing this on your own.
    02-15-2013, 10:57 AM
In true collection, the horse's head will be a touch infront of the vertical. It is anatomically impossible for a horse to be straight on the vertical while in true collection.

The poll should be the highest point of the horse. This isn't a "new" concept. The horse should not be breaking at the 3rd vertebrae.

Here is a picture of the poll being the highest point, and the horse slightly infront of the vertical.

In order to correct your horse's "headset", you have to correct the way it moves. The head is the last thing you think about in dressage because if the horse is moving the way it needs to, the head will just fall into place on its own.

Part of the higher head carriage comes when the horse is brought up off the forehand.
OliviaMyee likes this.
    02-15-2013, 06:18 PM
Cool is their any way else by looking at the legs or any other body parts to tell if their engaged ? My horse sometimes has the poll the highest point, ill show you a picture of him looking similar to the above horses head carriage.
    02-15-2013, 06:37 PM
Ok I have many more but im going to get ready to ride hopefully
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    02-15-2013, 09:58 PM
The right headset will come with how the rest of the body is moving. The most important thing in my opinion is to get them relaxed, back muscles engaged, hind end under themselves and taking the bit and stretching down. These things will result in your horse being in a frame most of the time, and from there you can bring their heads higher/lower, ask for a bit more tuck or for the frame to be looser.

As long as their body is engaged and they're relaxed, I don't really worry about their poll. I event too and I've found the horses' head is the last thing the judge really looks at- when everything else goes nicely they'll naturally get a decent headset.

Also- please don't take this badly I'm not meaning to critique you or your horse too much- he looks a bit tense and your hands could improve a bit. It might just be the picture but if you bring your thumbs up, bend your elbows and bring them closer to your ribcage he might relax a bit more. Like I said it might just be the picture or how you two work together.
    02-15-2013, 10:12 PM
That's actually a nice picture. It looks like a pretty normal, moderate trot. The horse isn't stepping super far under herself, but she looks even and her head and neck position are good. This is a nice Training Level position. YOu could let her have her head a bit more out in front of her, and drive a bit more energy into her hind legs.
If it were video we could tell if she was lightly accepting contact or not. I dont' see a lot of stress in the horse's face, so I think it's pretty good.
If you can put your thumbs on top and don't allow any break in your wrists, you will get a better elbow, wrist, bit line and this helps in softly following the hosres's mouth, which keeps her happy in a light contact.

You are doing well!
OliviaMyee likes this.
    02-16-2013, 09:17 AM
Thanks every one, I really enjoy talking about this stuff. YAY just watching some go pro footage from today and Slips poll is a bit higher and tucked in, in the canter. Which is an improvement to looking like a giraffe and not being forward that much. I have a bad habit of broken wrists, and I just keep forgetting about working on that habit. Lol wrists kind just flop down. If only when I rode I remembered to work on my wrists, they might get stronger and I could hold them properly.

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