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English Riding

Many saddle seat riders believe their sport is misunderstood by those unfamiliar with the discipline. Here, Carole Stohlmann, a United States Equestrian Federation "R” saddle seat equitation, Arabian, National Show Horse and Saddlebred judge from Oklahoma City, clears up...
Q.  I currently ride my 10-year-old gelding in jumper classes. He is very smart and a beautiful jumper, but he is also very sensitive. When we come up to a fence, he gets kind of strong, so I tense...
There is more to dressage competition than the ability to create a good pattern. Correct basics, a proper seat and a display of good horsemanship can go far to impress a judge. However, you can also leave a bad...

Leads in the Lines

Q.  At a recent show, both the judge and my trainer said I didn't place well because my young, green horse swapped his leads in the lines and at the base of most of the jumps. Why would my...
Photo by Lesley WardPeople have different learning styles, some learn best by performing a task over and over, some with visual input (looking at an example), while others do well with spoken instruction.1.  Notice what approach gives YOU the...

Hunter Bit Decision

Of course you should always ride your horse in the bit that lets him perform at his best. And you must be in control of your horse for that to happen. But while pelhams are common in equitation and...
Are you too busy with your hands? Do you resort to grabbing the reins in an effort to force your horse on the bit? Here’s an exercise to help you develop a more sympathetic feel of your horse’s mouth....
Galloping a horse

Gallop and Hand Gallop

We spend much of our time in the saddle honing the walk, trot and canter, but there are two other speeds that are required in English disciplines: the hand gallop and the gallop. In the good old days of...

Ride After the Jump

So much preparation is spent riding toward a jump that riders often neglect to continue riding after the jump. Whether it’s contemplating what just went wrong, mentally celebrating a wondrous effort or just plain old daydreaming, a lot can...
Can you keep your horse on the bit through basic dressage movements? Is he comfortable negotiating difficult terrain while hacking out? Can he handle a course of small jumps with ease? If you answered yes to all three, you’ve...
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