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Joy and Fun with Horses and Horseback Riding

The collection.

To collect the horse doesn't mean to ride it more slowly.

Authored by Beate Schulze and translated by Martina Wald

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The collection

To collect the horse doesnít mean to ride it more slowly. The diligence, the impulsion and the forward tendency have to remain in all 3 pace's.

But the bend of the haunches increases and therefore the steps become shorter and the croup goes down.

Collected trot. You can see clearly the under stepping (hind part) and the bend of haunches.

Only due to the sinking of the croup the raising of the forehand is possible. 

This raising of the forehand should not be forced by hand, as through that a hollow back will be caused and the hindlegs will be put backwards away for the centre of gravity.

Practical hints to improve the collection of the horse:

- Trot-Stop-Trot

- Change the speed (of trot or canter)

- Canter-Walk-Canter (with shortened strides for example: 3 steps - 5 strides and so on)

- Bring the horse's shoulder forward

- Half pirouette in walk / half pirouette in walk between two halts

- Shorten the steps: slowing down the steps until a full stop is achieved, but donít forget keeping the impulsion, pleasure and activity alive.

You have to pay attention to bringing the hindlegs under the centre of gravity of your horse.

The hindlegs have to move forward very actively and the audience should have the feeling that the hindlegs will overtake the front legs. Such a movement is full of energy and power. The back and the upper neck will become more rounded..
It is absolutely necessary during this activity to have a light connection between your hands and your horseís mouth. A backwards movement of the hands should be avoided, because the poll pushes the whirls to the withers.

The withers sinks down between the shoulders and the spine drifts downwards and so the horse only moves with tension and becomes more and more cramped.

This results in a tensed horse, which can move only with hectically tensed steps.


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