Tug of War: Classical vs Modern Dressage by Dr. Gerd Heuschmann
Tug of War: Classical vs Modern Dressage by Dr. Gerd Heuschmann. Why Classical Training Works and How Incorrect “Modern” Riding Negatively Affects Horses’ Health
Dr. Gerd Heuschmann
German rider and equine veterinarian Dr. Gerd Heuschmann is well known in dressage circles; admired for his plain speaking regarding what he deems the incorrect and damaging training methods commonly employed by riders and trainers involved in competition today. Here, he presents an intelligent and thought provoking exploration of both classical and “modern” training methods, including “ hyperflexion” (also known as Rollkur), against a practical backdrop of the horse’s basic anatomy and physiology.
In a detailed yet comprehensible fashion, Dr. Heuschmann describes parts of the horse's body that need to be correctly developed by the dressage rider. He then examines how they function both individually and within an anatomical system, and how various schooling techniques affect these parts for the good, or for the bad. Using vivid color illustrations of the horse’s skeletal system, ligaments, and musculature, in addition to comparative photos depicting “correct” versus “incorrect” movement and, most importantly, photos of damaging schooling methods. Dr. Heuschmann convincingly argues that the horse’s body tells us whether our riding is truly gymnasticizing and “building the horse up, ” or simply wearing it down and tearing it apart. 144 pp.
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