Genius dressage workouts from Christoph Hess to boost your coaching

  • In search of some some new workouts so as to add to your dressage coaching at dwelling? Having some new concepts to shake up your education is usually helpful for each horse and rider, because it’s straightforward to get caught doing the identical issues day after day.

    Fortunately the German dressage legend that’s Christoph Hess shared loads of concepts for helpful dressage workouts on the 2021 British Dressage Nationwide Conference, to revitalise your coaching regime and assist obtain a greater manner of going out of your horse.

    1. The one-handed circle

    Trip a 15 or 20m circle in both trot or canter, then pop your reins into your outdoors hand. Let your inside hand drop down by your thigh as you give together with your outdoors hand.

    “Many riders use an excessive amount of inside rein,” explains Christoph, who advises utilizing this train at reveals earlier than you journey into the world to assist your horse loosen up. “This helps the horse be in entrance [of your aids] and opens the body. Let it occur, and don’t be afraid of the define altering.

    “It is a good dressage train to assist a horse loosen up and be supple and it’s good to assist the rider be supple and balanced within the saddle.

    “The horse could go over the bit, however the suppleness and rest will develop. For me, from a scales of coaching standpoint, suppleness is an important. With out suppleness nothing else works! And comfortable, relaxed horses are extra supple horses.”

    2. Transitions on a circle

    Canter a 20m circle, then make a transition to trot and journey one other circle, earlier than repeating.

    Christoph advises shifting your mindset round transitions, so {that a} canter to trot transition, for instance, shouldn’t be framed as the tip of the canter, however moderately, the beginning of the trot.

    “You aren’t ending the canter, however beginning the trot. Proceed to make use of your driving aids, moderately than making the transition together with your reins,” he says, explaining that sustaining this ahead pondering in your education “helps preserve horses mentally comfortable” throughout their dressage workouts.

    3. The sunshine seat

    In canter, come into a light-weight seat on the lengthy facet, and provides and take the reins on a protracted rein, earlier than using right into a circle and giving and retaking the reins once more. Christoph explains that using in a light-weight seat helps the horse work extra over the again, and likewise develop extra pure steadiness, which is able to result in higher self-carriage.

    “It can be crucial for the horse to have the ability to produce pure gaits. It’s good for riders of all ranges to present the again slightly extra freedom. Giving an extended rein helps a horse use his physique and open the physique. It’s best to have the ability to journey a complete take a look at in a light-weight place,” he says.

    “Many riders suppose dressage is simply sitting trot, however I believe the sunshine seat will also be an essential a part of a dressage session. The sunshine seat is a place that makes horses comfortable; it’s a welfare place.”

    4. The give and retake

    Not simply that annoying motion within the take a look at; Christoph explains that the straightforward give and retake of the reins is without doubt one of the most helpful dressage workouts to make use of in coaching.

    “We need to all the time open by the throat-latch, so the horse is all the time in search of the bit and takes a gradual contact,” he says. “Particularly in tense horses – don’t be afraid to present that rein. When the horse will get increasingly more open within the neck and the body, they will begin to swing extra over the again.”

    5. Holding the saddle

    Suppose the times of holding onto the saddle for steadiness are behind you? Suppose once more. For Christoph this can be a beneficial train to assist enhance your sitting trot.

    “To start with, by no means use sitting trot for those who don’t have already got a great feeling. Use rising trot as an alternative,” advises Christoph.

    “One of the simplest ways to be taught to sit down with the horse’s motion is to make use of rising trot, then journey a transition from trot to stroll. For the final 5-10m go sitting, and put one hand on the saddle so you discover steadiness, whereas swinging together with your pelvis for the previous few metres earlier than you come right down to stroll.”

    6. 6-8m circles

    To work in the direction of assortment whereas sustaining vitality from behind, in addition to straightness, Christoph advises using a 6-8m circle within the nook of the world, earlier than popping out of it and using shoulder-in down the lengthy facet.

    “Assortment with out impulsion is nugatory, and I’ve but to see a horse at any stage who has no points with straightness,” Christoph factors out.

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