Is reining compatible with a dressage trained horse? - Page 3

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Is reining compatible with a dressage trained horse?

This is a discussion on Is reining compatible with a dressage trained horse? within the Reining forums, part of the Western Riding category

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    02-11-2011, 05:31 PM
First a proper stop should never be braced. If you do you will mess up in so many ways. However if you sit in the same manner that you would sit a dressage horse you will come off.

As to bending round the inside leg. Depends on what you need the horse to do. I have and do use my inside leg in the circle if I need to move the horse it a certain stop.

Again you MUST under stand where and why reining started to fully under stand the maneuvers and how they are ridden.

Here are a few very good examples of well ridden and well trained reining horses.

If you are looking to do the maneuvers for the cowboy races you need to learn to ride the horses in a way that is compatible with that type of race. My trainer does the extreme cowboy races with the reiners he trains. He has been quite successful in doing so.

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    02-11-2011, 08:42 PM
I don't mean to be rude or anything. But in my mind when I think about the difficulty of reining vs. dressage, I just want to point out that three year olds compete in reining futurities. Five year olds win at the WEG. That would be unthinkable in dressage. I'm just saying.
    02-11-2011, 09:45 PM
Different sports for different sorts. I'd be happy if I were halfway competent enough to seriously consider either...but for myself, I get a bit hot under the collar when someone suggests dressage is the end all of riding, and a dressage position is suitable for varying competitions.

I also read a half dozen books on dressage riding before I realized that it is a different language than western, and I like the latter better. And since my horses 'speak' western, that keeps us all happy. When riding a rocky desert trail, I neither need nor want 7 types of trot...just a steady mount with a good stop. Pity my mare doesn't really have either right now. We'll work on the stop first...
    02-11-2011, 10:43 PM
Reiner-those are 2 of my favorite reining videos ever!! Stacy and her horse are just so talented.....Wimpy's little step....what can I say.....**drool**

Personally I think it would be interesting to hear what some of the top riders who exchanges mounts for a ride would say about each. From what I heard about it, the reiners could ride the dressage horses, but the dressage riders had a more difficult time riding the reiners. Totally different.

Bsms-I am with you. Even when I was doing h/j it always seemed to me that the dressage folks thought they were "better". Just my perception. And I have had some great friends over the years who ride dressage. Just going from H/j is very difficult,IMO. You use opposite legs to bend and turn, more contact (obviously, since there really is none on a reiner) etc....etc.....

OP-when you stop a reiner-I have been told, going from english to western-to sit on my pockets. Yes, feet go forward, but your weight is in your butt, not your feet. The shift of your pelvis is what tells your horse to stop. (at least mine). I ride some bareback too, am trying to do more and more of it. Actually, it is pretty helpful, as long as you shift your weight right every time! Really a challenge, especially with a really sensitive horse. Have not gone totally bridless yet, I usually ride in a rope halter for the time being, and sometimes just a neck string. Later in the spring I will go back to a bit.
    02-12-2011, 12:59 PM
Those are perfect examples. I forgot all about the Stacey Westfall video which is so inspirational for anyone. In that video she is in a very balanced seat. You have to be if you are going to stay on bareback without gripping! So there is no contradiction between what I have learned and the way she rides. When she does the sliding stop she does not throw her upper body back and her legs way forward. She tucks her seat under and her legs go just slightly forward.
If you say her feet are slightly in front of the vertical that is because she has no stirrup so her lower leg is hanging straight from the knee. I would say she has really good training, maybe even some dressage background from someone.

I can see in the spin that she does move her weight slightly to the outside so I can concentrate on that difference to see if I get more speed. Her horse is very balanced and bends correctly on the circles so it is tracking straight. In the sideways yield she does not take her outside leg completely off the horse with her body hanging off the outside. She remains in a balanced position with the outside leg just slightly off the horse's side.

The other ride is really impressive too because the horse is so fast. I can see what you mean about doing a sliding stop from the gallop rather than just a canter. Most of the time he is nearly in a balanced position with the legs just a few inches in front of the vertical alignment we strive for in dressage. His pelvis is tucked to lower his center of gravity for security, which makes absolute sense.

On one sliding stop he does not throw his upper body back - he just tucks his pelvis more the same way Stacey does. On the other stop he throws his upper body back - very straight and it seems like this would put a lot of pressure on the horse's loins. His legs also move really far forward and appear to brace him between the cantle and the stirrup. As you do not want the horse to hollow his back and brace in the slide I believe the rider should not do it either.

I found a book by Wendy Murdock I had forgotten I had. She is a reiner that studied with Sally Swift and she rides and teaches a balanced position. So there ARE reiners that ride according to classical principles. I had forgotten which I often do. There are differences in objectives that account for the differences in cues but I do believe much of what I have learned could be applied to a reiner. I believe Stacey is probably asking the horse to bend around the inside leg so that it is tracking straight on a circle and not falling to the inside with it's shoulder.

I am really glad to know that most reiners do not use mechanical devices to force their horses into a frame. I bet the good reiners have excellent feel and know the precise timing for applying any aid. I was told by one local instructor (who bought a well trained reiner from out of state and then won a big competition) to just jab the &^%$ out of my horse with a sharp spur to make him spin faster. When I asked about timing I was told "there is no timing. Just do it as fast and hard as you can". Last lesson with that person but later when my horse was doing a good (but not fast) spin, guess who took the credit.

Everyone has an opinion. It annoys me when people assume they know more than they do and tell others they are "wrong". Happens all the time when these two worlds collide and even in the world we are calling out own.
Thank your for the insight. It was very helpful.
    02-12-2011, 01:24 PM
Keep in mind that there is a difference in the 3 stops in Shawn video. 2 where stops into the role back. So you have to stop in such a way that that you are ready to do the role back. If Shawn did not sit back a bit in the stop to the role back then he would not be in the correct position for the role back.

Also there is timing in everything you do with a reining horse.

Also spurs are not to make the horse go faster. Not in the circles or the spins. Once a horse starts a maneuver the spurs come off. Now if they need a bumb to keep them in position then you will see the rider bumb them again.

Take a look at both videos in the turns. You can see space between the horse and the out side leg once the horse gets going. Also there should be a good consistent gain in speed. It should not be there in one stride or one step. It should be gained evenly.

Reining is not about speed. It is about correctness. The speed is when the difficulty comes into play and is what is needed to + the maneuvers. However a slow correct maneuver will score better then a fast in correct maneuver. The challenge is to get both. That is where you + scores come from.
    02-12-2011, 01:54 PM
Originally Posted by nefferdun    
...I found a book by Wendy Murdock I had forgotten I had. She is a reiner that studied with Sally Swift and she rides and teaches a balanced position. So there ARE reiners that ride according to classical principles...
Classical? Please remember that the 'classical' dressage position isn't all that old. Xenophon was riding bareback, and bareback riders do it that way to keep the center of gravity low and because there is no positive value to putting the feet forward. And Xenophon was also concerned with being able to throw the spear with one hand...

But from the time stirrups were adopted, the majority of people have not ridden at speed with their heels below them. That was for riding in parades, with a well trained mount moving at relatively slow speeds. The same foes for 'collection' - it was meant for parades, not war. The US Cavalry observed that style of riding, and rejected it as unsuitable for combat.

Flat race jockeys, steeplechase jockeys, polo players, campdrafters, reiners, cutters and others use a different position than dressage, and one that is closer to how people have ridden since the stirrup was invented. They don't do it from simplicity, stupidity, lack of refinement, body odor or any other negative trait. They are using what works.

Someone wanting to ride a steeplechase would be silly if they showed up with a western saddle and declared they were going to ride IAW the classic principles of the Texas cowboy!

Originally Posted by nefferdun    
... I would say she has really good training, maybe even some dressage background from someone...
Maybe she was taught to ride, and how to ride bareback, without dressage? I don't hate dressage, but I hate it when dressage riders acts like they own the Holy Grail of Riding.

Originally Posted by nefferdun    
... On the other stop he throws his upper body back - very straight and it seems like this would put a lot of pressure on the horse's loins. His legs also move really far forward and appear to brace him between the cantle and the stirrup. As you do not want the horse to hollow his back and brace in the slide I believe the rider should not do it either....
Momentum. The center of gravity is not where it appears in a frozen frame.

"Wimpys Little Step is quite simply a reining phenomenon. During his three-year-old year, this bionic stallion captured the interest of the reining industry when he won both the 2002 AQHA Congress Open Reining Futurity and the 2002 NRHA Open Futurity with Shawn Flarida in the saddle. In doing so, Wimpys Little Step earned over $185,000. He is only the second horse to win both the Congress and NRHA Open Futurities.Now, just six short years later, the 9-year-old stallion is the NRHA’s newest and youngest Million Dollar Sire."

Welcome to Green Valley Ranch! | The Stallions | Wimpy's LIttle Step

"In a sport that is quickly taking the center stage spotlight around the world, Shawn Flarida is the sport’s superstar. He is the NRHA’s all-time leading money earner, and the first-ever Four Million Dollar Rider. Shawn has five NRHA Open Futurity championships to his name, and has won the All-American Quarter Horse Congress nine times...In 2002, he added a big chunk of change to his record when he captured the prestigious NRHA Open Futurity title – his first – on Wimpys Little Step, owned by Mark Schols. The $175,000 paycheck for the win brought him inches away from becoming an NRHA Million Dollar Rider, and in 2003, he became the third rider to earn that distinction, following NRHA Hall of Fame members Bill Horn and Tim McQuay."

About Shawn Official Shawn Flarida Website

Reining isn't dressage, nor does it want to be. Western riding isn't dressage, nor should it be. Dressage is about parades and show. The other disciplines using other approaches are not inferior to dressage, and their riders are not simplistic brutes fumbling about on a horse.
    02-12-2011, 03:19 PM
Originally Posted by bsms    
Dressage is about parades and show.
Oh shoot. Someone should have told the International Olympic committee!
    02-12-2011, 10:23 PM
I don't think certain disciplines are "better" than others. I feel that there are people within each discipline who ride in a balanced manner working with the horse, and there are those that don't ride well but sometimes still get the results they want. There are those who ride for a goal with no regard for the horse, and those who keep the horse's best interests and longevity in mind.

I may change my cueing for a different discipline but I don't change the way I ride: aligned so that if my horse disappeared I would be standing up on the ground. Regardless of when this position came into being, I believe it is correct and the most balanced way to ride a horse. Whether with short stirrups or long.

If any of you watch the show "Equitrekking," there was an interesting one on Spain I just watched. It showed a ranch that uses Andalusians to work cattle using a hybrid type of dressage. They definitely rode the horses with more bend and collection than is usual for cow horse disciplines. Yet they were not doing pure dressage either.
I found it interesting to see after reading this thread.
    02-12-2011, 10:29 PM
Keep in mind that each discipline has its own saddle. Each saddle will put you in the correct way to ride the horse in the best possible way for that discipline.

A rope saddle is not a reining saddle a reining saddle is not a cutting saddle a cutting saddle is not a barrel saddle. Each saddle puts you in the correct position for each event.

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