Mittwoch, 4. November 2020

Why it is high time to free biotensegrity from the claims of any riding styles

This is another sight on biotensegrity in horses, inspired by Jean Luc Cornilles post in

I agree with what he wrote about scientific insights, research and the problems arising from translating a feeling into words in mostly mechanical terms.

But, with due respect to the rider on the photography, this picture does NOT show a horse that has evolved his tensegral potential.

This might be a good piaffe in the sense of Lègereté, but not in the sense of a healthy creature that is able to handle what ever crosses it's path.

Taking the risk to open pandoras box, I'd like to look at the bitter struggle between Bauchér and Steinbrecht without citing their writings and without disturbing them. They've had their time.

What is this about?

I'd like to do it the other way round: What makes sense for a horse in order to live, survive, being strong and able to carry a rider where ever they are? What does it mean to evolve the tensegral potential in a horses body?

How can a horse protect his body from misuse by the rider, so it is able to carry a rider following basic algorithms instead of reacting to every twitch of the human on his back?

The pictures may help us to see the ideas. The lines I added do not mark right and wrong but what the picture shows in opposite to the training result I'd like to see. By the way – for me, a piaffe is a result, not a lecture!

The red lines follow the pictured horse, the green lines show my idea of a strong and reliable horse that makes a proper use of it's body.
How did I get there?

I did never stay in one riding style long enough to rank the proper aids above my feeling for the power of the horse, although it was close once. As a freelance riding instructor I found my job in rehabilitating horses from all riding styles and learned to see which ideas broke the horses and which made them strong.

Why it is the horse, that has to make proper use of it's body

In case of doubt, if one is not a master of riding, it is always a good choice to strengthen the horse and let him exercise with situations instead of aids. In case of doubt, the algorithm we want the horse to follow should be: „Take care of yourself and see you don't lose your rider“, because otherwise we create artificial creatures who rely on our skills instead of their own.

But maybe I'm alone with this sight...

So, why is it the horse that has to learn to make a proper use of it's body? Because we are not perfect, maybe. I'm not.

Far more important is, that the body can only protect itself without the mind blabbing memorized answers. A well trained horse with evolved biotensegral potential is able to listen to his rider, but listening to the rider will not make a horse able to evolve it's biotensegral potential.

This is why the red lines show a horse, that tries to do everything right his rider asks for and the green lines a horse that does everything right in terms of biotensegrity.

Let's have a look at the red lines

The angular dimensions of hind and front limbs and the alignment of the body do not allow energy storing in the tensegrity structures. The ground reaction forces are lead away from the body center and thus can't be integrated and used to carry the rider in a healthy way.

This is a thesis based on my knowledge about biotensegrity that goes far beyond just having read some texts. At this point I strongly recommend to follow Susan Lowell's Biotensegrity Guide before continuing, because otherwise there is no common basis for further discussions!

Main aspects the red lines show are:
- Very narrow angle in the shoulder joint, which is not made for flexing under load but for keeping distance from the ground.
- Decreasing line from the hip to the cervi-toracic transition, which should be at least horizontal on this level of dressage
- No vertical front limb
- The angles of hip joint and the knee don't match
- The lumbar-sarcoid transition is „open“

These lines show the vectors of the ground reaction forces (starting from the points of ground contact), in orange colour for the horse in the picture and green for my idea of integrated ground reaction forces. The lines on the right belong to the green lines in the picture above.

Why is it done like that?

Because horses like this are earlier and easier to control, and people like to keep control. Achieving „collection“ by pulling the hind feet under the belly is done in a minute. It is a another system than competition dressage ore pleasure. It looks so nice. It is one way of the „art of riding“.

What is the better riding style?

Sorry, there is no better riding style, because they all base on the same ideas wich destroy sound and tensegral movement patterns. Nearly all pictures we find of ridden horses nowadays show the same symptoms I marked in the pictures above. The only thing that can change these pictures is a shift concerning the paradigms equitation is based on. And here I'm with Jean Luc Cornille again....

Biotensegrity in horses is worth some studies!

So, we have a new riding style?

Sorry, nope. Here I cite the title of Graham Scarrs book: Biotensegrity is The Structural Basis of Life and no one should try to register it as a trademark! Biotensegrity will transform every riding style, but it can't be claimed as a riding style nor for a certain riding stile.

Now: „Fire in your own time!“


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