A horse's nature is different to that of humans. If we want to understand them and have their full support, attention and cooperation we musst learn their language, which is mostly nonverbal - horsemanship. Horses barely make any sound when they are in pain and often they will not show any signs of pain for a long time. This is very dangerous and annoying, because it makes us thinking everything is all right; but often this is not true and we don't see that unfortunately. The results is a 'broken', frustrated horse with little to no motivation. This will lead to frequent illnesses. It is because of this that it is so important as riders that we sharpen our sense. We riders must improve our body language, coordinate our breathing and think about how w tense and relax our muscles. This is a horse's natural language and they are brilliant at reading our emotions. They register our pulse and the are sensitive and focused what the rider doing. Horses are quite easy understand. They are always authentic, living in the "here and now". Mainly they love the comfort and the community that comes from a natural environment. This ist the basis of all our training. We give this to the horses as a reward and we geht their complete attention, love and motivation. They give us their full support and an incredible friendship.
For us, as horse people and riders it is important to know the basics of a horse's physiology or 'biomedical circumstances'. By nature, a horse's back is not constructed to carry a rider's weight. They are flight animals and as such react very quickly to survive. That is why their natural behavior and their synaptic system is very sensitive. They sensory perception is better and faster than of humans. Naturally their main strength is in their forequarters. So, if we put weight onto the horses back, we must teach them how to do accommodate this load. They must learn, how to carry a rider's weight without getting pain in the vertebra bridge by lightening the back muscles. For that we teach them to allow the head to drop forward and down, far below the centre of gravity and stepping hindquarters (constructive attitude expansion) - this is not a natural movement for horses. If you do this correctly, horses will learn the position quite easily, because they feel good and can breathe normally allowing them to be relaxed in their work.
The muscle that plays the chief part in the coordination of movement ist the Longissimus dorsi. It runs either side of the vertebra bridge from the sacrum to the lowest vertebra. It consists of parallel muscles running top rear and bottom forward. It thus joins forequarters with the hindquarters and controls contraction and extension of all paces. It should now be plain what's going on when the weight is put on the horses back. The horse tries to alleviate the load by tightening up the muscles in the back to protect them self from pressure and pain. The muscles soon get tired and the back subsides. The horse raises his head or will often put it behind the bit, trying to relax and get the painful load off, which is not possible of course. There is only one way to train the horses back to get stronger and find skill and consolidate its rhythm - constructive attitude expansion. This ist achieved bey dropping its head forward and down, using its back legs alternately with very short collected turns. This is possible when the rider's weight is put where it can be supported immediately behind the withers. We call that a constructive dynamic seat.
As we know now, a horse's back has to be trained by using constructive stretching forward and downward training. At the beginning of the training and with horses that already have problems, we begin with stretching before collecting in a 90:10ratio. That's 90% stretching and 10% collected training slowly and steadily increasing using an emphatic sensitive feeling towards the horse's motivation and condition. Riders need to practice the constructive dynamic forward seat and escort the horse with a sensitive steady contact on the bit (important: feeling, not pulling backwards, the horse must search for the bit and get on this using trust). Horses come down in the stretched position due to its rider's breathing out and sliding backwards; pushing weight away from the horse's vertebra bridge. Horses are free from pressure now and can relax and snort. They enjoy the stretched position. That is the reason why they learn this so easily.
That is absolutely necessary to keep horses healthy - we call that the: passive support mechanism.
With that the ligamentum nuchae, which cannot fatigue, is brought in to carry the rider's weight, while covering the loggissimusdorsi. So the horse ist not overloaded and will not get negative tension. The muscle which are below now have the possibility for effective circulation. They can move and deploy before loading too much weight on the vertebra bridge.
For riding in the stretched position you need the constructive dynamic seat, which is useful to work with in different stages (means you share out your weight from the vertebra bridge by moving your body). It ist very important to maintain that we stay close to the centre of gravity. In order to keep this position, it is necessary to shift the rider's body. The knee goes a few inches back to get closer to the perpendicular line. The thigh will automatically shift backwards and bring the buttocks back in the correct place. The new foundation of the seat and permanent contact to the horse is now knee-calf-foot. The angle of hip and knee alter to become more acute. It should now be plain to see and fell that what is going on inside the horses back is responsible for its balance and skill. This decides on its future career!
Prerequisite of the course is the correct technical riding with sensitive aids. The basic foundation is the empathy feeling of balance and rhythm on the horse.
This small script does not claim to be a full guidance. It ist much more a mental request think about a much better opportunity to train with your best friend and sports partner to get a real team! Maybe I can open your eyes to the challenges and hardship of the horses and help you to find a true partnership with the horse.
I hope this explanation assists in simplifying the fundamental of Bucephalus. It ist not necessary to explain all the details here, but I am pleased to help you start. If would be a pleasure for me to accompany you in your learning and development.
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