Showing posts from February, 2010


Billie over at camera-obscura has been a great resource in following the rollkur issue, and prior to the next FEI meeting on the subject, she has posted this logo and text , and invited us to do the same in solidarity with Dr. Heuschmann and his message at that meeting.  I hope you'll visit there and consider adding your voice to this important debate: ---- The FEI is holding a closed-door round table meeting on Feb. 9th to discuss the training method known as rollkur, or hyperflexion, which involves pulling and holding the horse's muzzle to his chest. This practice is known to have many negative effects on the horse, both physically and psychologically. Gerd Heuschmann, the lone voice for the horse at this meeting, has my support and appreciation as he presents his case "for the good of the horse" along with petitions and letters saying NO TO ROLLKUR. You can see a taste of this method in the Epona TV's footage in the previous post. Please take a moment t

Glenshee's First Online Riding Clinic, Part I

One of our readers has very generously agreed to participate in a virtual clinic here on the blog.  Reesie found GEC through a previous post on releases over fences .  She was good enough to submit some of her own photos for review.  In this post, I will critique some of them, which I hope will be helpful.  Please feel free to comment on the critiques or let me know if you think there is anything I've missed or I haven't explained well.  While this pic is blurry, it's easy to see a positive effort here.  I really like to see the low/following release and well balanced, centered position.  Her lower leg has slid back a bit, but her angles are well closed and her weight is in her heel, giving the impression of confidence and security.  That her horse looks positive over a solid xc fence is further proof. As anyone who has ridden xc knows, a crest release just doesn't cut it in the field over solid jumps.  This is a good example of correct ba

Nate's Excellent Adventure

--> --> GHM recently posted some amusing horsie stories and encouraged the rest of us to do likewise.  Since so many of my own embarrassing or funny moments have already been described there, I thought maybe I’d share one of my personal favorites that you probably haven’t heard.  It involves my horse Nate while we were training with the British Horse Society in Scotland. As regular readers here may know, our Scotland adventure may not have been all we dreamed it would be, but it did have its moments.... One of my favorites involved trail riding.  It’s not a particularly funny or exciting story, but it is just so classically “Nate” that I have to love it.  It’s probably my favorite story from that trip.  You see, the facility we were at was not just a top equestrian center in the area; it was also an exclusive resort .  And many of the hotel’s clients would pay a good deal of money for the privilege of getting on one of the centre’s trusty school horses and ha

Another Chance to Speak Out Against Rollkur

   I received this e-mail today and thought I'd post it here for anyone who may be interested.  Phillipe Karl is urging concerned horsemen to sign a petition asking the FEI to officially condemn the horrific practice of rollkur: Dear Madam, dear Sir, On 9 February 2010, more than 20 experts will attend an FEI meeting in Switzerland to discuss once again whether the so-called hyperflexion (“Rollkur”) is an adequate method of training a horse. In order to support the opponents of this method and offer them further arguments, a petition has been initiated at We’d like to invite you to support this action against hyperflexion – time is short! You were so kind as to sign our own petition calling for reforms of the FN rules, which was initiated in May 2009. This obviously bore fruit: The German FN eventually invited Philippe Karl for a meeting in Warendorf, Germany. They now have to find an appropriate date. We will of course keep