William Micklem's Blog (50)

William Micklem says WE ARE PART OF SOMETHING VERY SPECIAL - Part 2

Last week I began to look at the special value of equestrian sports. Jessica Kuerton, in the…

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Added by William Micklem on February 19, 2010 at 4:00am — No Comments

William Micklem says WE ARE PART OF SOMETHING VERY SPECIAL - Part 1



 

 

 

 

 

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Added by William Micklem on February 12, 2010 at 4:00am — 4 Comments

Best of William Micklem - 9 - LOVE IS THE ANSWER



It is so easy at times to lose control slightly and ask too much of your horse...or possibly worst, to intentionally ask too much in a deliberate and continual way in the belief that 'stretching' the horse in this way will yield greater progress. Education is the key, but to develop the experience, feel, and sensitivity to judge with some accuracy how much a horse can be asked is not a short journey. However what a hugely rewarding…

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Added by William Micklem on February 5, 2010 at 4:00am — 11 Comments

Best of William Micklem - 8 - THE MOST DANGEROUS WORDS IN COACHING



“You can spit in their ear to get them to canter,” a former coach of mine, Robert Hall, used to say, when emphasising how easy it is to train a horse if you use any aid consistently. In a demonstration I will often demonstrate this point by doing something silly, like pulling the hairs behind the saddle as I give the normal aids for canter. I do this about ten times, then take the leg away completely and just pull the hairs and most horses…

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Added by William Micklem on January 29, 2010 at 4:00am — 9 Comments

Best of William Micklem - 7 - RIDE LIKE AN INTERNATIONAL RIDER - TODAY



This is my ten year old son on his 24 year old 11.2 pony - both of whom need to be carefully minded. They are jumping a fairly substantial fence. Quite a challenge and quite a risk many would say, but the two of them can do this time and time again with little risk. In fact my son can ride down to this fence like an international rider, in terms of getting his balance right and presenting his pony at exactly the right take off point, despite…

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Added by William Micklem on January 22, 2010 at 4:00am — 8 Comments

Best of William Micklem - 6 - THE YOUNG WILL JUDGE THE OLD



I remember the occasion well. It was the Fourburrow Pony Club camp in Cornwall, in the south west of England. I was 12 and a typical thin gangly kid. As you can see in the photograph above I was six foot tall on stick legs and all curled up on a 14.2 pony....my brilliant mare Charlie's Aunt. So what did my coach do? She took away my irons and made me ride and jump all morning with no stirrup irons, just like so many coaches have done before…

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Added by William Micklem on January 15, 2010 at 4:00am — 9 Comments

Best of William Micklem - 5 - FOUR GREAT REASONS TO JUMP YOUR DRESSAGE HORSE

I see no difficulty in bringing together good dressage, jump and cross country training. Indeed I believe it produces a better, more efficient and humane training programme....a point also made by Dressage legend Reiner Klimke who also evented and show jumped to a high level as a young man. I believe the dressage helps the jumping which in turn helps the dressage. It is all about having the flexibility to choose from the fullest range of exercises to benefit each rider and horse…

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Added by William Micklem on January 8, 2010 at 6:30am — 3 Comments

DRESSAGE & JUMPING - INACCURATE INTERPRETATION

I am very disappointed to hear that a number of people have inaccurately interpreted the messages in my last blog to the extent that I am being portrayed as anti-dressage.



I LOVE DRESSAGE



Let me make it 100% clear that I love good dressage at any level, and I am in love with seeing a rider and horse working in harmony and with real quality...to me each moment is then something of great beauty and still gives me enormous pleasure on a daily basis. Good dressage training…

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Added by William Micklem on January 8, 2010 at 5:30am — 5 Comments

William Micklem says WILL WE FACE FACTS REGARDING DRESSAGE AND JUMPING?

On February 8th Hartpury College in the UK are hosting an International Eventing Conference entitled ‘Training for Safety’. An admirable aim without doubt and some great sessions are scheduled for the day, so the organisers are to be congratulated. However the description of one of the presentations worries me greatly. The title is Dressage – the relationship with Jumping. The description explains that Pammy Hutton FBHS will dispel the ‘myth’ that the higher level of dressage can be…

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Added by William Micklem on January 1, 2010 at 4:00am — 33 Comments

HAPPY CHRISTMAS WINNER!



So what are you going to do next year to win a rosette....we cannot all win gold medals but we can all produce a new personal best, a new PB, in some area of our lives..... and it is not being conceited or over confident to aim high. As Nelson Mandela said.... "We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented,and fabulous - actually who are you not to be? As we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people… Continue

Added by William Micklem on December 25, 2009 at 4:00am — 1 Comment

BEST OF WILLIAM MICKLEM – 4 – Racing towards a ‘fifth leg’ (Part Two)

'Hannoverian' Butts Leon - German Senior Team '08 & '09 - 97% Thoroughbred.



Convincing people of the need for thoroughbred blood in the event horse is should not be difficult. Ireland has been the World Breeding Federation leading country for event horses for the past 15 years with horses that are almost exclusively 3/4 to full thoroughbred, as have been the majority of the greatest event horses in history.…



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Added by William Micklem on December 18, 2009 at 4:00am — 3 Comments

BEST OF WILLIAM MICKLEM – 3 – Racing towards a ‘fifth leg’ (Part One)

A fifth-leg supremo, William Fox-Pitt.



If you want to jump safely, the fundamental aim in training should be to develop your horse’s ability to look after himself. If your horse looks at what he is jumping, makes automatic alterations, and has quick reactions when getting too close or far away from a fence, or when slipping or tripping, he can be said to have a ‘fifth leg’. All horses should have a fifth-leg training programme as part of…

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Added by William Micklem on December 11, 2009 at 4:00am — 1 Comment

BEST OF WILLIAM MICKLEM - 2 - A good idea has to give way to a better idea.





One of my training cornerstones is the philosophy that a good idea has to give way to a better idea. It makes every sense, it encourages continuous study and effort to improve, and it helps avoid polarisation between different ‘schools’ of thought. I never think you can't do something because it hasn't been done before. I believe it is vital we keep an open mind and search for better ideas, especially when better might mean more humane as well as more efficient.…

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Added by William Micklem on December 4, 2009 at 4:00am — 2 Comments

BEST OF WILLIAM MICKLEM - 1 - A special horseman…and a lifelong lesson about difficult horses.



This is an amazing true story about acceptance and lack of acceptance. It shows how wrong it is to assume all ‘difficult’ horses just need to be ridden more forward. It is wrong to assume that just because a horse is unwilling, napping, rearing or bucking that they are being naughty and need discipline. Indeed it is dangerous to assume this. A proportion will undoubtedly have this behaviour because of pain.



ONE LADY AND TWO HALF BROTHERS



As part of his… Continue

Added by William Micklem on November 27, 2009 at 4:00am — 8 Comments

LED ASTRAY AGAIN - 'HOLSTEINER' WINS PAU CCI ****



Germany's Dirk Schrade has just won the last four star international horse trials of the season at Pau in France. He was riding his 'Holsteiner' gelding King Artus. The reports of his win have quickly spread around the world...to the delight of those breeding and selling Holsteiners.



However there is no mention of the fact that his sire is in fact a thoroughbred, King Milford, out of the Holsteiner mare Alida 1V. Then one looks at…

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Added by William Micklem on October 26, 2009 at 11:30am — 13 Comments

CELEBRATION DAY! MANDIBA 2nd AT FAIR HILL CCI*** WITH KAREN O'CONNOR

Our homebred star Mandiba and Karen O'Connor stormed back to form today to be 2nd at the *** CCI International at Fair Hill in the USA, despite Karen breaking her scapula and ribs only weeks ago in a motorbike accident, and despite terrible weather. The pair showed their class and courage to lead after the dressage and go clear across country.



"My shoulder was getting sore so I slowed down towards the end of the track," said…

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Added by William Micklem on October 18, 2009 at 3:30pm — 3 Comments

STOP PRESS - Even Mark Todd can be led astray

This afternoon Kevin Staut of France won the Individual Gold Medal in the European show jumping championships in Windsor, England, riding his 'Selle Francais' stallion Kraque Boom Bois Margot.



He is by Olisco (by the legendary jumping sire Jalisco B out of a mare who is over 60% Arab ) who jumped very successfully in the United States in the 1990's ridden by Michael Matz, and out of Joyau D'Or a 'Selle Francais' mare.



When you do the analysis on this stallion's breeding…

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Added by William Micklem on August 30, 2009 at 2:30pm — 17 Comments

EVEN MARK TODD CAN BE LED ASTRAY - PART 7

So is there one King of thoroughbred sires in the sport horse world? Many of you already have your personal favourite, which is wonderful because personal favourites reinforces an emotional connection with horses and this gives the horse world added strength….and it is the emotional connection between human and horse that ensures we avoid treating horses as machines.



HYPERION – SMALL BUT STUNNING



My own personal favourite is Hyperion.…



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Added by William Micklem on August 28, 2009 at 4:00am — 18 Comments

EVEN MARK TODD CAN BE LED ASTRAY – Part 6

Despite the orthodox line that the thoroughbred and the sport horse are going in different directions in reality we see something different. There is an increasing demand for quality horses in all disciplines at all levels. The really vital consideration is that most riders do not ride at an elite level, and want to do a wide range of activities. The TB or 3/4 TB horse can be ideal for this, especially as their smaller physique and size… Continue

Added by William Micklem on August 21, 2009 at 2:30am — 12 Comments

EVEN MARK TODD CAN BE LED ASTRAY – Part 5

Convincing people of the need for thoroughbred blood in the event horse is the easy bit in this series of articles. Ireland has been the World Breeding Federation number one country for event horses for the past 14 years with horses that are almost exclusively 3/4 to full thoroughbred, as have been the majority of the greatest event horses in history. The key component and value of the TB is obviously speed……and safety.



LESS THAN MAXIMUM SPEED = SAFER



Cross-country…

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Added by William Micklem on August 14, 2009 at 3:30am — 31 Comments

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