Tricks and Treats

To demonstrate  that they were truly in communication with their mount, High School riders of the classical traditions were often challenged to perform any sequence or combination of movements their audience could think up right there and then.  Here Nuno Oliviera and his horse demonstrate their versatility:

For centuries the worst insult a High School rider could receive was that his horses were ‘routinee’, meaning that while they may have trained their horses to perform certain tricks given certain cues; they were not actually in communication with their mount, and so were unable to respond to challenges or changes in their environment:

The carrot is a joke, but that the show ring has degenerated into trick riding is not.  The FEI has actually made a rule limiting the number of upper level horses allowed to be in the arena during the awards ceremony  for safety reasons. When prize-winning internationally competitive riders can’t control their horses, modern dressage has truly lost its way. It is sad times when better horsemanship is found under the circus tent than in the riding school:

(click for the beginning) or for more

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One thought on “Tricks and Treats

  1. Sara – It’s a beautiful sight in watching these beautiful creatures in harmony with the human and wonderful energy. We saw the “Dancing Horses”, Lipizzaners, many years ago in Denver.

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