Rider Position

Richard Watjen, who has been considered to have sublime position once said, “No fault in rider position was ever corrected by suppleness. Suppleness is the result of riding in the correct position for years.” This is an excellent statement. Riders need to come to riding with the idea of an alert body capable of efficient toning, not slumped or relaxed. There is a great quotation from the brilliant and legendary French music teacher Nadia Boulanger. An advanced student came in one day and began to present a new composition that he thought was free-flowing and rangy. A little way into it, she stopped him with stern look. “Let me tell you something,” she said, “loose is not beautiful. Loose is loose.” The Zen master Shunryu Suzuki told his students, “It is easy to have calmness in inactivity, it is hard to have calmness in activity, but calmness in activity is true calmness.”

Dressage for the 21st Century, Paul Belasik

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