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Practical Horseman

Practical Horseman Dressage Today Extra Volume 14

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It presents step by-step training programs and showing advice from recognized experts in hunters, jumpers, equitation, dressage, and eventing, along with money- and time-saving ideas on health care and stable management.

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United States
Equine Network
$7.59(Incl. tax)
$25.35(Incl. tax)
4 Issues

in this issue

11 min.
aging gracefully part 1: how to keep your dressage partner happy and healthy

Though it is indisputable that an older horse might have special needs and require extra attention, I strongly believe that the management of a sport horse requires the same basics no matter his age. Instead of taking a wait-and-see approach with an older dressage horse, owners can avoid many common problems with proper care. At my farm, Gut Rothenkircher Hof, in Rhineland-Pfalz, Germany, our motto is “prevent instead of intervene.” It is without question that horses are very individual entities who can develop mental and physical problems despite our best efforts. But I am convinced that the number of horses suffering from typical dressage-horse ailments can be drastically reduced by respecting two main elements while training and competing: their mental and their physical well-being, because both are closely linked. In this article…

1 min.
helios c: the right start

Helios C, a 2006 Hessian gelding owned and bred by Dr. Jutta Chirita from Germany, was brought to Uta Gräf as a 3-year-old and has stayed with her ever since. In the meantime, Helios has won at M-level and has debuted at S-level, placing second. (Tests at the beginning of Level S in Germany are equivalent to Fourth Level in the United States.) Chirita, who considers Helios part of the family, says, “It’s clear that for a sport horse to remain healthy for a long time, he needs a very good rearing place, a breaking-in only when he is physically ready for it, good feeding, social contacts, free exercise, an empathetic trainer, a good farrier and lots of affection.” But there’s much more involved to keep a horse reaching his peak…

2 min.
ahlerich: a decade at the top

The Westfalian gelding Ahlerich was the most successful horse of the late Dr. Reiner Klimke. What’s more, the horse stayed at the top of his game for more than a decade. Dressage Today asked the legendary rider’s wife, Ruth, about the secrets behind Ahlerich’s longevity in the sport. DT: Why was Ahlerich able to compete internationally with tremendous success for more than a decade? Ruth Klimke: I am convinced it had been his truly good training. At the beginning, he wasn’t a physically strong horse; he had a weak, long back. It was the right work that made him stronger and capable of the work. But to build up his physique took time. We did a lot of gymnastics, jumping and cavalletti work. We always took great care to make sure that…

4 min.
understand stifle stresses

The nature of dressage places unique stresses on the horse’s body. At the higher levels, the movements are precise and slowed down so there is less forward momentum than with, for example, a jumping horse. However, there is a tremendous amount of upward, sideways (lateral) or turning momentum. In addition, with the dressage horse working properly, the majority of the horse’s mass is propelled from the hindquarters and the horse works from a constant and somewhat crouching stance. Therefore, the stifle joint is a very important and relatively often-injured area in the dressage horse. The stifle joint corresponds to the human knee joint and is comprised of the distal end of the femur, the menisci, the cruciate ligaments, the proximal tibia, the vestigial fibula and the patella (kneecap). Like the…