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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun. 29, 2005
    Location
    OH
    Posts
    112

    Default Insights?

    So, having read a lot of books, but logged most of my lifetime riding hours on the backs of newly OTTB's of varying degrees of goofiness (I'm pretty good at riding quietly and not offending a sensitive horse, but that's about it), I have entered a new chapter. I decided to take some dressage lessons with a credentialed trainer on an educated horse.

    It's been great! Every week I come home with something new to think about. Last week it was the idea of the elbow and hip joints being related. The looser I got in my hip joints at the sitting trot, the less I had to work at keeping my hands steady, and yet the more effective I became in encouraging the horse to start to collect. It was so amazing to feel that contained and available energy!

    So, anyone farther along this nifty Dressage path than I am (which would probably be... just about anyone reading this!), what are some insights that you've had along the way that made a difference in your riding? Thanks!



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr. 9, 2005
    Location
    Colorado
    Posts
    1,200

    Default

    That the slower I go with my mare, the faster we get places.



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug. 25, 2005
    Location
    Northeast
    Posts
    10,248

    Smile

    Congratulations on your new insights. You are on the right path.

    Actually your elbows while staying loose and free must be independent of your hips. The elbows help to interface between your body's motion, and the horse's mouth. The minute your hips get stiff he will slow down and/or quit going forward. When your elbows get stiff his head will go up. If your knees or ankles get stiff, your legs cease to be effective.
    Some riders change their horse, they change their saddle, they change their teacher; they never change themselves.



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov. 5, 2000
    Posts
    9,314

    Default

    My most recent little insight -
    "Keep the horse in your elbow." From Jan Brink by way of my trainer.



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec. 19, 2007
    Location
    Aldie, VA
    Posts
    1,597

    Default

    "Your wrists belong to the horse and your elbows belong to you."

    Eileen
    Mad Mare™ Studio
    Custom Swarovski®, Czech glass and gemstone browbands in Circlet, Diadem and Tiara styles. Matching stock pins, bracelets and belts.
    http://MadMare.com



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov. 5, 2000
    Posts
    9,314

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Roan View Post
    "Your wrists belong to the horse and your elbows belong to you."

    Eileen
    Ah, yes. Another good visual. When I heard Stephen Kiessewetter say it, he meant "keep the wrist supple and do not let the horse pull your arms forward".

    But by thinking "keep the horse in my elbow", I am better able to keep my entire forearm from elbow to wrist much more elastic and supple - which makes my connection to the horse's mouth more elastic.



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec. 19, 2007
    Location
    Aldie, VA
    Posts
    1,597

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by DownYonder View Post
    But by thinking "keep the horse in my elbow", I am better able to keep my entire forearm from elbow to wrist much more elastic and supple - which makes my connection to the horse's mouth more elastic.
    Interesting. I have to mean that my wrists must give to follow the contact to the mouth and my elbows must give to stabilize the contact with my body. The forearm in the middle is loose and elastic and my entire arm is to act as though just an extension of the reins.

    Eileen
    Mad Mare™ Studio
    Custom Swarovski®, Czech glass and gemstone browbands in Circlet, Diadem and Tiara styles. Matching stock pins, bracelets and belts.
    http://MadMare.com



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov. 5, 2000
    Posts
    9,314

    Default

    Yes, I agree. I guess that the concept discourages me from locking my wrist - you can't "keep the horse in your elbow" if your wrist is locked. Ask me how I know.



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun. 13, 2001
    Location
    usa
    Posts
    6,110

    Default

    Equitation (the seat/tact/timing) is the alpha and omega of riding.
    I.D.E.A. yoda



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr. 10, 2006
    Posts
    7,344

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by shygirl View Post
    So, having read a lot of books, but logged most of my lifetime riding hours on the backs of newly OTTB's of varying degrees of goofiness (I'm pretty good at riding quietly and not offending a sensitive horse, but that's about it), I have entered a new chapter. I decided to take some dressage lessons with a credentialed trainer on an educated horse.

    It's been great! Every week I come home with something new to think about. Last week it was the idea of the elbow and hip joints being related. The looser I got in my hip joints at the sitting trot, the less I had to work at keeping my hands steady, and yet the more effective I became in encouraging the horse to start to collect. It was so amazing to feel that contained and available energy!

    So, anyone farther along this nifty Dressage path than I am (which would probably be... just about anyone reading this!), what are some insights that you've had along the way that made a difference in your riding? Thanks!
    No advice, just wanted to add that I'm having the EXACT SAME experience! Loads of fun and it has opened up a whole new world to me...
    We couldn't all be cowboys, so some of us are clowns.



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Mar. 15, 2007
    Location
    (throw dart at map) NC!
    Posts
    4,560

    Default

    My revelations...

    ...on an educated horse? Trust the horse. If you ask correctly he will oblige. Be patient and learn to experiment with your body in subtle ways to find what the horse is looking for from you. This will guide you towards learning the correct aids.

    ...you really don't have to use your reins very much on a schooled horse. You need steady and elastic contact, but you really don't need to do huge amounts. It's pretty much all coming from your body, seat and legs.

    ...Focus on feeling the body of your horse. Focus on the footfalls. When you can feel what the legs and haunches are doing, you'll be SHOCKED at how much more effective your aids become because you've mastered timing!

    ...Enjoy every moment!



  12. #12
    Join Date
    Dec. 19, 2007
    Location
    Aldie, VA
    Posts
    1,597

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by ideayoda View Post
    Equitation (the seat/tact/timing) is the alpha and omega of riding.
    Amen.

    One of the hardest things to attain, IMO.

    Eileen
    Mad Mare™ Studio
    Custom Swarovski®, Czech glass and gemstone browbands in Circlet, Diadem and Tiara styles. Matching stock pins, bracelets and belts.
    http://MadMare.com



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