Conquistadores and Artists

Excerpt: Why does this linking of dressage to the military and military movements persist, and to this day sometimes overpower the well-documented artistic evolution of dressage?…The provenance of dressage being guided by artistic forces is overwhelming.

Persistent Problems in Elite Dressage, Articles 1-3. Originally published in Australia's The Horse Magazine.

Excerpt: After working with, and observing the work of so many up and coming elite riders, it is perplexing to see that there are still so many fundamental faults in the performances. At first I thought it was endemic to a particular national style that had proliferated through the exaggerated effect of certain teachers. Although this may not have been the case initially, I believe these problems are now universal among many elite dressage riders, regardless of country. I have chosen three areas of concern that, if addressed, could make a huge difference in the overall performance of dressage. Over the next few weeks, I will discuss 1. bend, 2. hollowness, and 3. the inattention to deviations in limb patterns.

Excerpt: In this article, I want to address hollowness in the horse’s back, which is increasingly seen, and worse, is becoming acceptable in elite dressage particularly as it relates to collection.

Excerpt: In this article, I address the importance of recognizing limb deviations in piaffe and passage. A good piaffe, passage, or pirouette can be a foundation and demonstration of core strength and body control.  Proper collection is proof that the rider has been training the right muscles. Paying attention to these forms is paying attention to healthy technique. Faults in technique can be very difficult to correct and often have a cost to health and longevity. Judges cannot ignore limb deviation, especially if it appears or is exaggerated in collected exercises.

An Inside Look at Coaching: Paul's Teaching and Training Philosophy

Excerpt: Paul’s Atlanta clinic group asked a few questions about this long-term clinic group in Atlanta, Georgia, his training philosophy as a visiting coach, and how regular clinics in Atlanta have added up to competitive success for these riders and their horses.

Exclusive Online Article: Notes on Piaffe

Excerpt: Judging from my mailbox, dressage riders seemed perplexed about how competition judges are currently evaluating some horses’ piaffes at the international level. What is high quality and what is faulty? In this article, I will address two major faults in piaffes of popular riders that have appeared in recent performances, and seem to be confusing viewers.