1. is symmetrical developed in body and limbs;
2. is symmetrical in movement and can perform all exercises equally to the left and to the right;
3. will let itself collect and lift in the front.
The goal of dressage is a “riding balance”, in which 3/5 of the body weight is carried by the hind legs. Only a straight horse lets itself be collected and lifted in the front to relief the front legs and to support the back.
8 dimensions of physical Straightness Training
A straightened horse is in balance in the following dimensions:
|1. Lateral symmetry
A straightened horse lets itself be bent to both sides. It can bend flexibly to the left and to the right.
||2. Horizontal balance
The body weight is equally divided over all four legs. If a horse weighs 500 kg (1100 pounds), each leg has to carry 125 kg (275 pounds). The point of weight is kept in the center, keeping the horse in balance.
|.....||3. Equal front legs
Both front legs show equal shoulder freedom.
|4. Equal hind legs
Both hind legs of a straightened horse can push and carry equally.
|5. Correct alignment shoulders/hips
During training the horse has his hips and shoulders in alignment. Especially when going along the wall, horse places the shoulders in front of the hindquarter.
|6. Diagonal balance
Straightness training prevents the horse from leaning in on the inside shoulder or out over the outside shoulder, thus preventing a diagonal movement in the center of mass. The center of mass stays under the rider.
|............||7. Vertical balance
Straightness training keeps the horse balanced vertically.
|8. Correct topline
Straightness training enables correct usage of the back and abdominal muscles. It is important both physically and mentally for the horse to maintain a forward-down position.
Balance in other areas of Straightness Training
Due to Straightness Training the horse gets into physical balance, but also mentally and emotionally and spiritually we will make sure we fulfill his needs.