Erik Herbermann - Dressage Clinic at Weston

Once again, Erik focussed on details which make the difference between good and not so good work. Here are just a few points he made during his brief stay.

  • Zero Position is the perfect position without actually asking anything of the horse. It should not be tense although if you are not used to it it may feel uncomfortable until it becomes second nature.
  • Aiding begins with the passive positive seat attitudes:
    • Broaden front line
    • “ Tip the chair”
    • Ride horse and hips through elbows
    • Chest through shoulders
    • “ Kneel”
    Then if necessary use legs.
  • After each and every aid, give the hand.
  • The seat always rests
  • We do not want obedience; we want understanding and willling co-operation
  • Ask many little questions of your horse and expect answers
  • To straighten your horse use diagonal aids; the leg on the side of the evading croup and the rein on the side of the evading shoulder.
  • Only ever bend (to the inside) once the horse has softened to the (inside) rein.
  • Good technicalities and good attitudes guarantee good results. To chase after good “ feels” almost always ends in disappointment. (This does not mean that we should ride without feel)
  • Accurate riding of school figures is critical to success because it represents your purpose.

If you haven’t already bought Erik’s latest book, “Horseman’s Notebook”, do it now! It is brilliant.

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