Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Washington State
Please quit with the comparing your horse with the Spanish horses. These horses are trained by people who have devoted their entire lives to creating this art form... much like a geisha devotes her entire life to doing her geisha thing. The horses do not live lives that even closely resemble that of a normal horse's. I met an Andalusian who had come from one of these programs at one time. He was absolutely amazing, but the reason they sold him is because he didn't have the right mindset or quite the physical ability to do their tricks. You aren't taking into account that the Spanish trainers go through a lot of uber-fancy well-bred gorgeous horses before they find the few that have what it takes. Also, he had been in such a rigorous program with so much training and so little "normal" horse life that he had to learn how to graze as a seven year old. It was pretty pathetic watching a full grown horse pull up as many clods of dirt with his grass as a 6-month old foal.
I can also assure you that before these horses come anywhere near to taking feet off the ground, they are extensively trained in advanced dressage on the ground to build up their body condition and teach them good form. These are a few hundred steps that you are skipping, and while your horse may be able to do it, it will never be quite as good or quite as "safe" as it is with the Spanish horses.
Another thing that you are not taking into account is that having the weight of a rider on its back changes a horse's balance dramatically. Just because a horse can rear in a field and be fine does not always mean that he can rear with you on his back and be fine. And honestly, I've never in my 12 years of living, riding and working with horses, seen one rear any higher than the rear in the picture you've shown while at liberty. They usually only go up really high to do some serious fighting.
Finally, I don't understand what you're trying to prove with this. If it's all about ego and "being on the side that can do fine while rearing" and "not looking like some fair little lady in a medieval fair"... these are not legitimate reasons. In my opinion, most things done with a horse should be meant to improve yourself, improve your horse, or get a practical job done. Teaching your horse to rear is not really accomplishing any of this.
Last edited by Eolith; 02-06-2009 at 10:34 AM.