Over half term I went on a 3-day clinic learning a different way of riding, which is called Legerete. At first I was quite sceptical, but was patient listened with interest and realised, that it really makes a difference.
Why is it different?
Legerete, which means ‘Lightness’ is different because you start off holding your hands higher than normal; this is to put the bit in the corners of the mouth and soft on the lips, so the horse takes the bit forward, and not putting pressure on the tongue. The horse/pony will then start to relax all their muscles and lower their head, but not too far down so they don’t fall on to their shoulders, and be out of balance. This way of riding has made an amazing difference with Pebbles, mostly with her balance and control. It is quite amazing how slowly I can have her at walk !! Pebbles is a very forward going and strong pony who says dressage isn’t her favourite riding principle and we end up having a little fight, which then would make us both very tense, and you need to be relaxed, especially for dressage, putting this new experience in to my riding, really works for us.
I think this way of riding is a much nicer way of treating and schooling your horse/pony because you and your horse/pony will be calm and relaxed. For this clinic I was privileged to be taught by Birgit Beck-Broichsitter, from Germany, who’s early career was spent competing successfully in all riding disciplines and she qualified many young three-day-event horses for the German state and national championships.
This new way of riding hasn’t changed my ability to ride in any way, and can only further develop my Eventing future….. in lightness.