Academic Art of Riding

The Academic Art of Riding is mainly based on the knowledge of the five greatest riding masters of history which are Xenophon, Pluvinel, Newcastle, Guérinière and Steinbrecht and aims to bring the Historical Art of Riding from the past back to life again.

The horse must be trained according to its abilities, concerning both body and mind. Thoughtful gymnastic exercises will keep the horse healthy and long living.

The academic riders see riding as an art form, an art of movement – like ballet.

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Dressage for the horse
The foundation of the Academic art of riding is good basic training, like the training of a working horse, but the knowledge of the rider should be developed before he goes to practice.

The schooling starts with the ground work and lungeing with the cavesson. During the training you develop secondary aids (communication), preparing the horse to be ridden.

In the Academic art of riding we see the seat as a primary aid. As Pluvinel, who died in 1620, said: “My main goal is to ride the horse only from the seat.” The seat is the only aid you cant stop using when you are sitting on a horse. All other aids are only used to explain when the horse didn’t understand those given from the seat. This means of course that the education of the seat is a long journey for most riders.

Because of the thorough basic training, the rider and horse become partners who work together in harmony. The horse must be trained according to its abilities, concerning both body and mind. Thoughtful gymnastic exercises will keep your horse healthy and long living.

The two minds must want what the two bodies can.

The philosophy is that dressage was created for the horse, rather than the horse being created for dressage. This method of education is suitable for all breeds and all riders.

Stages of the academic art of riding

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As Newcastle said: “The whole art is to put him well up on his haunches.”, which is education of the joints of the hindquarter. Before you start to work the hindquarter, you need Steinbrechts knowledge about how to give shape to the spine.

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Already Xenophon brings, in the fourth century before Christ, the whole art into a nutshell with the scentece: “Ride the hindlegs forward inunder the stomach of the horse, and give the horse a halt so that he bends in all the joints of the hindquarter.”
Before you can go into such a professional work you must see yourself as a learner and during that period you need a relaxed basic shape in your horse, while learning communication.

Lungeing

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Piaffe

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