This is not something I usually do.

Great opening, huh? I’m already telling you that what I’m about to do is bad. Really, really, bad. As in there’s absolutely no excuse for my actions. Well, maybe one. It made me laugh and laughter is meant to be shared.

A little background
There’s a certain equestrian duo that I’ve been watching. I won’t reveal names but he sports a mustache and she’s well known for wearing visors. I find them fascinating. Why? Marketing. They’ve built an Empire (notice the capital E) around their equine products. Now they’re trying to enter the dressage market. First I noticed their ads appearing in Dressage Today. Then an email announced the duo as dressage trainers on a video subscription website. The fallout was incredible and led to the removal of the press release from two websites. We, uh, dressage riders, were labeled “dissenters” because we didn’t buy into it.

What spurred my reaction  (Tee, hee, spurred.)
The latest and greatest damage control, er, email, announces that Visor Lady has been endorsed by an Olympian. Eh, big deal. Never heard of him.

What tickled me
“…[Visor Lady] a masterful dressage rider…”
Masterful? Really? Then why isn’t her butt glued to that saddle? I can see air. Don’t be fooled by the horse. Look at the rider’s butt. Not that I should talk after last night’s lesson but enough about me.

Visor Lady is a masterful dressage rider.

“[Visor Lady’s] brand-new system teaches riders how to engage their horses physically, mentally and emotionally into collection…”
Uh, isn’t that classical dressage? Hmm, and the training pyramid. Ha! None of that’s brand-new. The training methods existed before she did. The duo just wrapped it up into a prettier package.

Educational moment
Now what made me feel bad about writing this is my lack of open-mindedness. I truly believe that we all have something to teach and that we’re in a constant state of learning. It doesn’t matter what discipline you ride. We can all learn from each other. Along that line a photograph is merely a moment frozen in time. It could be good or bad but it’s merely a moment.

Just do me a favor, please. Don’t use a photograph demonstrating a bad dressage seat (above) and tell me that she’s “a masterful dressage rider.” I had a moment like this last night and I’m not called “masterful.” No, instead I heard, “Sit your butt down! Sit on that saddle!” I have had teeny, tiny, masterful moments. Don’t blink or you’ll miss them.

Now let’s compare Visor Lady’s photo above to another one I found.

Both horses are shown at almost the same canter stride moment. One horse seems to have a better bend and the hind leg is really engaged. (psst! One leg is really reaching underneath.)

Now look at the riders. Both are good riders but which one is part of the horse? I’ll give you a hint. No air.

Bingo! Class dismissed.