Oh k so you work the horse for 5 minutes a day and where in there is there any fitness training or muscle building?
And you people always bring up rolkur. You do realize 'classical' dressage invented rolkur right? And that its been around far longer than a.v.g. Right?
Have you every been to a dressage training barn? Or your just quoting hearsay on the methods largely used by the dressage population? No groundwork? Ha I would love for you to tell that to my coach just to hear her correct you. And what's this mumbo jumbo about over specialization? The number one thing PREACHED by FEI riders is variety in the work. You know the dressage stallion Briar? He was schooled almost exclusively in the fields and forests around natural obstacles.
And about the timeframe of a dressage horse. As has been demonstrated by your lovely videos, the horses now are bred for the sport, especially those at the top. It is boring for them to drag along through the levels and so they learn more quickly and conditioning and strength is always what is being schooled, not the movements. Previously the movements were really schooled to maintain them. Now for me a typical training ride on my marginally gifted dressage horse consists of conditioning and strengthening through transitions and correct schooling. I rarely do the pirouettes, the tempis, or the true extended gaits at home as these are tricks, and performing them does not make him a dressage horse.
What the horse in the video shows are tricks and based on what I've read and your descriptions and arguments that is about the amount of understanding that goes into the training of these horses as well.
Eta when my horse wants to express himself in the field, he has a field with good footing in which to do so. "natural" piaffe, passage, levade, etc performed in the field are rarely correct and again, mere exhibition tricks when schooled in that fashion.
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I am inviting discussion, not insults. I am not sure what you mean by 'you people' but please leave your prejudices or battles at the door.
You know nothing about me, nor I you. I however am willing not to make assumptions about you. I base my beliefs and opinions on what I have observed and experienced as do you. I do not claim my 'way' or methods are either the most correct, or the only way. I remain open minded and accept that I do not know what I do not know.I have exposed myself to observation or function of every form of horse handling and schooling I have been privelaged to have an opportunity to experience. From Iceland, through the US to Peru and Argentina.
Yes I spent two years on a 'dressage' yard in the Uk and have visited several others in the UK and Dubai. They were very pretty with expensive horseboxes and impeccable driveways. I do not know what you or your trainer do or don't do, nor do I surmise so there is no need to be defensive. However I know what I have observed on these yards, and that is also from a perspective of bodywork also.
These are horses that are ready to kill their riders. That require two handlers and a chifney to lead to the arena. Horses that literally fall over if asked to circle without some sort of support.
Your experience may be different and if so I am pleased that it is,but I can only base my views on what I have seen.
As for strength and fitness, that depends upon your school of thought. Much like in humans we can have the bodybuilding school, and the aerobic training. As an alternative we have yoga and similar. Both have different types of strength and different levels of balance, endurance and flexibility. Passive vs active, slow twitch, fast twitch etc.
When I taught Aikido I also trained in Arts such as Pentjak Silat and Escrima. When boxing weight training helped me, with the Malasian arts it made me less effective.
Incidentally we are focussing on the dressage style movements but that is not the core. The control of the horse is, and as I mentioned above this is so lacking in the general sporting community as I have experienced it. KFH is a man who can read a horse and interact with it immediately, without fear or intimidation, no matter the breed in a way that I have not seen demonstrated by many others as yet. That I cannot take away from him. There may (will) be others, but I have not yet met them.