REINING The talk of the town today is still the warm up and schooling methodes of the Reining riders at a major Horseshow in Sweden.
I used to be a big fan of Reining,I still love to ride and train a horse to do the stops, spinn,circles and leadchanges,but I don´t understand what happend to "willfully guided"
I know that for some people this is a long time ago but 1987 I attended a NRHAJudges seminar. Back then it made sence,Control ,Correctness Willing ,Speed with mantained softness,
Before then many horses were Stiflestoppers and stiff in the poll and ribcage,but the ridingstyle shifted from Ride hard -slide far and spin fast in a blur.to something with a goal to make something pretty and exiting to watch .The goal was the olympics , to unite the The westcoast and east coast style of Reining .
The horses changed STYLE to the better, they looked softer ,stopped deeper and harder ,spun smoother and faster ,the horse was willfully guided with a resonable loose rein and the looped the the circles soft ,soft with speed and size differance on the circles.
Today I see something different at least at European Shows,where did the goodminded,soft and wellbroke reining-horse go to. Where are we heading?To me to me many of todays Reiners perform with the same lack off muscledynamic as in 1975 but with a tucked head and a longer rein,
I have seen a very famous european trainer at a major show,jerking the reins in a se-saw motion (horses chin to the chest) kicking agressevly with his spurs in the horses belly.No one from the showmangedment was there,This was the warm up for the class .INTIMIDATION and INHUMANE ,and really BAD for the sport.Mowing the hands to keep life in your reins is good, But this guy was way past that.
The judges dilema !
It looks to me that Judges like remote controlled or maby a programmed horse lets call it a trickhorse .A cowboy wouldn´t have much use of riding the way many of todays horses are rode or shown ,I hope I´m wrong, maby judges have to chose between a rock and a hard place,Everyone rides bad but the best of the bad is still the best at the show,
The Judges has a great responsabilaty in the creation of riding styles, look at the western pleasure .If the Judges gives credit to a low head behind the vertical , the ribbonhunters will continue to take all the shortcuts they can .Thats why we see rough and fast hands and training at shows what should be ready to show horses,School at home and show at the show,but the LOOK and STYLE,most people try to aceive doesnt seem to be waterproof enough for the rider to trust.
A well broke horse should stretch out (extend) when speeding up and get soft in the neck, back,hocks and mouth when collected . I don´t think the intimidated horse can do this properly.
WE NEED A CHANGE OF ATTITUDE......
A famous horsetrainer from Arizona say in his first book about Reining "Showing a horse should be like showing a peice of art"not everyone likes your painting and you cant change it at the show because the paint has to set.