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Dressage and Other Advanced Movements

Rising to the Trot Rise as the outside foreleg comes through. So you are rising on the outside diagonal.

Rein Back When doing rein back the legs move in diagonally opposite pairs, they are lifted clearly off the ground and the hind legs should remain in line with the forelegs.

Canter transition when first learning to ride most riders will just use the inside leg presure to get the horse to strike off, other riders, or those more experienced will use the outside leg back and on and inside leg applying pressure at the girth.


Extended The horse lengthens his stride, it is not just gaining speed, Extension can be at each gait, the horse will stretch their top line and frame to allow for the extra movement and for freedon of the movement.


Collected This requires the horse to carry themselves and is not taught by pulling the horse in with the reigns, but instead by pushing the horse forward, lightening and heightening the frame and top line and engaging the hocks under the horse.


Turn on the forehand like a pirouette but on the front end, This is taught to most dressage horses at the beginning of their training. Some train it on the lunge first.


Pirouette (Turn on the haunches) It can be performed in walk, piaffe or canter. When a horse does this at a walk it makes a quarter of a circle within two steps and it pivots on its hind legs. A pirouette is always on the hind quarters.


Lateral Movements - Lateral movements, comprising all movements in a direction other than that on which the horse is aligned, are of four main varieties and all can be used in various forms in all three basic gaits of walk, trot and canter. The standard variations are leg yielding, shoulder-in, traverse (or quarters-in) and half-pass.


Leg Yielding This is a lateral movement where the horse moves forwards and sideways as a result of leg pressure and looks slightly in the opposite direction to that which it is moving in.


Travers (haunches-in) This is a three track movement. The outside hind steps in line with the inside foreleg. The travers is the first lateral movement which requires that the horse moves sideways toward the direction of bend. This is aimed primarily at increasing lateral activity of the quarters.


Renvers (Shoulder-in) This is the same as travers but the horse's tail is to the wall instead of its head. The horse makes three tracks as it moves laterally with the head bent away from the direction it is moving. The hindquarters move on the original track whilst the forehand is moved slightly inside causing the body to bend. It is Used to aid in true collection and also, to aid in straightness.


Half pass When you put Shoulder-in and Travers together, you get Half pass. It is commonly performed from one side of the arena to the other, but is also shown in the form of a zig-zag or counter change of hand, requiring flying changes of leg when done in canter. The horse should be slightly bent in the direction in which he is moving.


Schalten The horse moves a set number of steps and then the same number of steps back before continuing. There is no pause between moving forwards and backwards.


Volte is an Advanced movement. It is roughly a 6 meter circle, it is done mostly at collected trot, canter and passage.


Piaffe is a collected trot on the spot or in place.


Passage is the ultimate in collected trot. The horse moves forward. It is slow but with huge movment.


Flying Change skipping motion at the canter; the horse is going from one lead to another without a break in the canter.


Capriole  horse leaps in the air from all four feet and at the peak of elevation strikes out with it's hind legs.


Levade (rear) horse rises on its haunches and tucks its legs under him at a 45 degree angle.