DressageClinic.com is Proud to Present Rien van der Schaft Assisting Grace Goodby Riding Schabos 18 year old Hanoverian Gelding & Callie O’Connell Riding Ferry 5 yrs old Oldenburg Gelding

Posted by admin On July - 20 - 2016

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Dressageclinic.com is pleased to present guest clinician Rein van der Schaft coaching two riders and their horses: Grace Goodby with her chestnut 18 year old Hanoverian Gelding and Callie O-Connell riding a 5 year old dark bay Oldenburg gelding named Ferry. 
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Click Above to Watch Sample Video of Rein van der Schaft

Rein begins this training sessions with a valuable lecture in which he shares his training philosophy for the development of dressage horses..  Rein explains that one of the goalsl of dressage is “that the horse divides his weight and the weight of the rider overtop of him, as much as possible over his four legs equally.”  He then adds that this must be done “without having the horse tense”. The horse must be forward and be relaxed.

Rein explains that for the horse to be balanced over four legs, two key concepts must be in place:

1) First, the horse must react to your driving aids

“When we drive them forward, there must be an immediate reaction going forward,” says Rein.   “You touch him, he must react.”  This is called obediant impulsion.  Rein shares that in his horses, an immediate response to his driving aids must be there and it must be immediate.

2) Next, you need contact with the mouth of the horse.

In the forward riding, there must be contact with the mouth.    Rein explains…  "To begin with, follow the horse’s mouth in the walk first; keep the contact as much as possible the equal on both sides of the mouth.  Once the horse trusts the hand of the rider – equally on two reins, the horse will begin to relax".

Rein shares that the hand must be first accepted by the horse.  The horse must be forward into the bridle and connected to your hand from his hind leg and can now begin to be asked to shift his balance more to the hind end.

Rein warns that this cannot be done before the horse accepts your hand.  “If you do this before he ‘accepts’ your hand, then it becomes like pulling, and this is not what we want in training our horses.

Rein then shares that once the two criteria above are met, the rider can now ask the horse to shorten and shift his weight and let the hind legs come under so the fore legs come more free.

“Collection is the process that the balance of the horse gets a little bit less on the forehand and comes more in the direction of carrying over the four legs even.”

Rein’s clear and concise 10 minutes of theory is necessary content for the dressage rider and trainer.

  Rein continues with showing these concepts in action when two capable demonstration riders and their mounts enter the arena.  Both horses have varied experience and education, which is helpful for viewers to see how Rein coaches each horse and rider team under his philosophy of having the horse relaxed and forward and connected in the hand.

Rein rewards his riders often as they implement his requests of riding forward, evenly in both hands, and managing the contact to bring collection.

What a special opportunity to have Rein’s classical dressage understanding captured on video with two lovely horse-rider combinations.  Rien van der Schaft is considered one of the foremost clinians in the world. It is a previlge to listen and beome part of his lesson. Enjoy!

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