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Harmony is born out of a genuine empathy for the horse and a compassionate awareness of the mental and physical impact of the work on the horse.

A Few Animations to Illustrate Energy Flow

When the horse is relaxed and appropriately aligned the energy can travel from the horse’s haunches through its spine and cause the horse to stretch forward and downward with its head and neck toward the bit. This preliminary skill stabilizes the horse's spine in preparation for engagement.

Click on image to play video sample of 'Walk on the Buckle'

(You may need to refresh the page if the animations below stop working.)

In some ways, the principle of energy flow works much like Newton’s Cradle...

When sufficient energy is sent from behind in a good rhythm, the horse will reach into the bridle but only if the horse is mentally and physically relaxed and the spine is appropriately aligned!

The less energy that is sent from behind, the less the horse reaches into the bridle.

Sufficient energy, longer swing

Less energy, smaller swing

Like a Newton's Cradle, when the horse's spine is out of alignment laterally, the energy does not make it through to the other side. Instead, the energy is dissipated and is lost (My horse Amy was masterful at the 'S' curve).

Likewise, when the horse's spine is out of alignment longitudinally, (behind the vertical or above the bit) the energy does not make it through to the other side. The energy again dissipates and is and lost.


An important difference between the horse and the Newton's Cradle is that the energy doesn’t travel backward through the horse. Instead, after the energy travels forward from the haunches, through the horse to the bit, the energy is received and filtered through the rider, who can request more energy, as needed. In this way, forward energy can become carrying energy.

One other important difference between the Newton's Cradle and the horse is that...

...the horse’s head doesn’t pop off!

(You may now want to go back and watch the video sample of 'Walk on the Buckle' again and see if you can distinguish the flow of energy )


2000 - 2008 © Tonja Dausend  - Terms of Use

last updated July, 2009