A Little Light Horse Opera

“It takes a real horseman to understand the importance of the back. … Considering [Nuno] Oliveira’s repertoire of up to fifteen horses to school a day, it was scarcely surprising that he developed enormous strength and suppleness in the lower back or loins. Without the slightest appearance of movement in his proud shoulders and upraised chest, he was able to hollow or straighten his back with the utmost ease. This had the effect of rotating the pelvis forward or back depending on his requirement, and gave him that depth of contact so necessary for advanced dressage. …

He could collect and balance a young, fit, unschooled horse within seconds; he had taught horses which had never been trained to changes in their lives, two and even one time flying chances in less than a week; a passable piaffe and passage could be extracted from untalented riding hacks before unbelieving eyes. Often the horses seemed as surprised as their owners.”

From Dressage, The Art of Classical Riding, by Sylvia Loch.

Published by Susanna Forrest

Author of The Age of the Horse: an Equine Journey Through Human History and If Wishes Were Horses: A Memoir of Equine Obsession.

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