The Rollkur Controversy, How YOU Can Help!!! By: Melodye Sweetin
Submitted by: Melodye Sweetin
Email Address: MelodyeSweetin(at)gmail.com
Date Added: 5/12/2012
“Rollkur” is a horse training system used by some trainers from many disciplines including dressage, jumping, & some Western disciplines such as reining. It is typified by riding the horse’s head with his nose behind the vertical, in a state of extreme hyperflexion. Whenever you see a horse whose poll is not the highest point you are witnessing “rollkur”. The sad reality is that many people have seen SO much of this type of riding that they don’t have a clear mental picture of what correct riding should look like anymore.
“Rollkur” has become increasingly evident at all levels of dressage competition, from small, local schooling shows through the Olympic levels. The problem with this type of riding is that it causes physical & mental anguish to the horse because it causes pain & leads to permanent physiological damage.
Unfortunately more & more Olympic level riders using “rollkur” to train their horses are winning with HUGE scores. Of course this sends a confusing message to other riders. In the past 15 years the picture of competitive dressage has changed dramatically. Very few horses are now seen in true self carriage, which is not a common by-product of “rollkur”.
2012 is an Olympic year, and many of us who are actively engaged in attempting to bring an end to this abuse are banding together to attempt to make an impression with the FEI to stop “rollkur” at the top international level of competition. Our goal is to cause a return to classical, humane methods of horse training. The consensus is that hobby riders look to Olympic competitors as their role models. If top riders are forced to stop using “rollkur” the message should eventually trickle down to amateurs & weekend warriors.
If you are interested in learning more about how you can help make a difference for the welfare of our beloved companion, the horse, please visit www.No-Rollkur.com, or visit them on Facebook. There is a lot of educational material & a petition to the FEI is being put together. Putting an end to “rollkur” is the least we can do for the animal that has carried us high above the fray throughout history. It is our responsibility to speak on behalf of the horse out of respect to this amazing creature!
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