Sharing my experience as I explore Dressage Today OnDemand!
The Dressage Today OnDemand Ambassador Experience
Please join me as I share feedback on my experience with Dressage Today OnDemand!
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Over the summer, JJ Tate gave worldwide access to a Charles de Kunffy clinic she was hosting by live-streaming the multi-day event. You could audit in person or purchase tickets for the live stream. I have never audited one of Charles’s clinics, but I had heard a lot about him. I didn’t plan to drive multiple states to watch the clinic in person, so purchasing tickets was a great opportunity to see what he was all about! Though I think with the right group of friends, it could have been a fabulous road trip!
I contacted a few friends that would actually be interested in watching dressage lessons for 8 hours and scheduled it on my calendar. I was excited to spend time with like-minded horsey friends, eat good food, and learn from a well-respected horseman. It was a great day!
I was so excited when I received an email from Dressage Today inviting me to view a collection of Charles de Kunffy videos! I then became even more excited when I realized this was from the same clinic I live-streamed! There was so much more from the clinic that I hadn’t seen as I had only purchased 1 day. Score!
The collection is comprised of 23 videos. I began at the top, watching the first two videos, Classical Horsemanship Lecture 1 and 2. If you’ve never heard Charles speak, get ready for a treat. He has a meditative-like voice with a dry sense of humor. You never know when the jokes are coming, but it keeps things entertaining!
What I loved about listening to both lectures was the passion and simplicity he spoke with. The horse was to be treated only with kindness and in return, we were given access to change their bodies in a way that promoted longevity and created beauty. All training should be knowledgeable, systematic, and appropriate.
The second lecture was more captivating in that he made riding sound like a healing remedy for the soul. JJ commented during the intro to this clip, that this lecture would make her cry. I couldn’t summarize what he said as I would never do it justice, so here are my notes. I highly encourage anyone who loves horses to listen to this lecture, not just dressage riders.
Xenophon (Greek Tradition) – work with gentleness and rewards, horses should never be forced or mistreated because they are precious and are willing to do our bidding
learn for the sake of the horse – begins with the right soul
the horse is best understood and enjoyed if it is enriching the rider’s soul
primary virtue is gratitude
riding is all about human wisdom and character / knowledge is not enough, you need to understand
ride in meditative state – soul and mind understand the important things in life
Aristotle – memories are the scribes of our soul
based on 3000 years of trial and error – it is an art / classical because it’s enduring / the bits and pieces that worked / we do not reinvent it / humane, kind, loving methods / horses thrive on reward
herd animal that includes you, the alpha / horse submits willingly
move better with less effort – whole mentality of horse is dependent on instinct that is given over to the rider / rider knows how to make things pain free and comfortable
based on the horse’s trust to the rider’s spirit
art in motion – horse improves your spirit
we are what we do most of the time, therefore excellence is a habit – Aristotle
If you are interested in hearing any of the lectures, please click on either photo of Charles to take you to the collection! Not a Dressage Today subscriber? There are free trials! Watch the clinic, explore other videos, and decide if it’s right for you!
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