Training Pillars Of Straightness Training
To be able to school the horse, we use the training pillars of Straightness Training which are:
3. Work in hand
This video gives you an overview of the exercises we use within theses 5 training pillars:
So these are the training pillars and exercises in which you and your horse are going to become proficient in Straightness Training!
How Do We Use These Training Pillars in ST?
Step 1: Start from the ground
Straightness Training starts with liberty, groundwork and longeing.
- When it’s young horse we take at least half a year to develop these training components, so the horse learns to communicate with a human, and learns to bend to both sides and walk on a circle.
- But also with older horses that have already been ridden, we go back to basics and we start from the ground, so the rider can observe the natural asymmetry and can help to get the horse in balance without the additional extra weight of the rider.
- Also senior horses and arthritic horses will benefit a lot from the work on the ground.
Liberty training we can use in the beginning of the horse’s education or rehabilitation, but also at the end, and in between;
- In the beginning we use it to create a good relationship, and a better understanding between rider and horse, and to increase the horse’s motivation to team up with us.
- Later on, when you have reached the higher levels in groundwork and work in hand, you and your horse can also start to do the lateral movements and collection at liberty, just to practice the concept of ‘less is more’ and to refine your guidance by using less and less technical aids.
Step 2: Work in hand
In work in hand we can take it a step further.
- In hand we practice all lateral movements to address all six keys of Straightness Training without the additional weight of the rider.
- These exercises in hand are to improve agility, flexibility, strength and coordination and to prepare the horse for riding.
Step 3: Riding
Once the horse has become stronger and more supple by doing groundwork, longeing and work in hand, you can start to prepare the horse for riding.
- With a young horse this will be done on the longe with a helper from the ground. Once the young horse has got accustomed to the rider and the aids, the horse can move freely around the arena.
- With an older horse you can get back on track with the riding, and experience how the work from the ground has improved his balance, suppleness and coordination.
Step 4: Follow the logical system of progressive exercises
Once the horse starts to carry the rider, a training period of years will start to improve and develop him gradually in body, mind, spirit.
All training pillars will still be practiced, because the whole will be greater than the sum of its parts.
Every ST component will add a different dimension to an exercise and all training components strengthen each other.
You will be amazed to experience the benefits all training components give to each other, while ending up with lovely harmony between you and your horse.
On the picture you see the half pass done in the training components work in hand, riding, groundwork and liberty.