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Dressage - The Dance

March 8, 2017

 

As I sit here in our ZB Tent I have the privilege of watching some of the best dressage combinations from all over New Zealand. It has occurred to me the relationship ship between Horse Riding and Dancing. It is no wonder then that these are some of my greatest passions in life.

In dressage the horse and rider work in harmony to create one overall picture or partnership. The horse is led by the rider to do several different movements in a particular order, much like that of dance choreography.

During dance the lady is led by the man to complete particular movements to music and together the partnership seemingly move as one. 

This then poses the question; how do two individual beings become connected in a way that their movements become as one being? The answer to this I believe lies in the law that every action has an equal and opposite reaction.

This means for in dressage if a rider uses their leg, by applying pressure, to ask the horse to move in a given direction. The horse matches this pressure and moves in the direction asked. 

In ballroom dance, for a couple to look balanced, each person must provide equal pressure toward one another in order to stay connected at the ribcage area. With this connection either partner can feel slight movements from the other indicating direction, timing and extent of movement. Just like that of the horse and rider.

This skill comes with hours of practice from horse, rider and dancer and once perfected is, in my opinion, one of the most beautiful things to behold. Two individuals moving as one with only the slightest margin for error.

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