The Dressage Seat
Achieving a Beautiful, Effective Position in Every Gait and Movement
With stunningly beautiful photographs and clear descriptions, classical dressage authority Anja Beran breaks down the physical requirements of the rider's seat on the horse, as well as its responsibilities during various movements—from the gaits and paces to lateral work, lead changes, piaffe, passage, and pirouettes.
Beran provides a unique perspective on the use of breath when riding, citing the recommendations of a classically-trained opera singer who regularly works with Beran and her riding students to develop their deep breathing skills. 'A relaxed seat', Beran says, 'is never possible with restricted breathing'.
In addition, she explores the need for an improved inner attitude in order to truly refine your seat on a horse. Fear, stress, and tension all interfere with your ability to focus on the horse and connect with him during the time you are together. Simple practices can help open and calm the mind, and over time, contribute to an overall better outlook and enhanced physical capacity.
In the second half of the book, Beran is joined by her personal physiotherapist and dance teacher for an in-depth look at human anatomy and how it functions in conjunction with the horse. Practical exercises give readers easy ways to improve mobility, strength, stability, coordination, perception, and overall posture, with superb results.
Reviews for The Dressage Seat
In her book The Dressage Seat, renowned classical riding expert Anja Beran says the importance of good breathing in good riding is often ignored. But in her own practice, she spends concentrated time nurturing proper breathing technique, and she encourages it in all her students, as well.
Beran is the head of the internationally renowned Gut Rosenhof training center in Frankfurt, Germany. She has been training horses for 25 years and is the author of Classical Schooling with the Horse in Mind. Beran believes that the most important position for a dressage rider is the seat, which this book proves using illustrations, examples, photos, and results obtained by following the methods listed. The ideal rider would be athletic, with long legs and a short body. Although some of these qualities cannot be changed (such as length of leg and upper body), strength, flexibility, and feel can be greatly enhanced. Working with riding instructors, physiotherapists, breathing instructors, and dance teachers is recommended for improving the rider’s seat. Exercises for flexibility and breathing are outlined. The explanations and instructions are very clear and easy to understand. VERDICT A must for dressage riders and instructors. This title compares well with classics such as Bengt Ljlingquist’s Practical Dressage Manual and Walter Zettl’s Dressage in Harmony.
I am savouring every word, illustration, photo and chapter of this book. Author Anja Beran, an experienced dressage rider/trainer offers a beautiful yet educational book about the rider’s seat. Any level of dressage rider will appreciate this book!