I am currently reading “Riding Through My Life.” This is the autobiorgaphy of Princess Anne. She speaks of an essential part of the exercise that must be done to get a horse fit for a big three day event like Badminton. “Starting work meant six weeks of walking the roads—very boring but considered essential after a horse had been out of work for any length of time.I often asked about the origin of this tradition, but apart from the historical observations of generations of horse copers that it toned up the muscles and strengthened the tendons , nobody knew whence it had sprung. It was also important that the walking was done on a firm level sufrace. ”
This is particularly important for me at the moment because Biasini is restricted to walking only. My husband David walks him in hand and weather perimitting they walk out on the driveway. Two or three days a week Lynsey tack walks on the driveway for about 20-25 minutes. She starts with walking him ” on the bit”. This means she is asking him to take up the contact with the bit and walk in a somewhat collected frame. Click this link to see the video
Later in the walking session she allows him to lower his head and neck and stretch out .Here is another video and you will see the difference in his frame.
Unlike Princess Anne’s horse , Biasini is recovering from an injury, not getting fit to compete in a three day event like Badminton which is big challenge for any horse. But a few weeks ago Lynsey told me she preferred to ride Biasini on the driveway as she felt the firm surface would be best for his injury. Well, Princess Anne would agree with her.
I will be writing a review of ‘Riding Through My Life’ a soon as I finish it. I am enjoying it very much and I find The Princess’ personality , which comes across clearly in her writing, very entertaining.
I’d love to hear from you!