Riding a Good Stretch Circle with Karen Pavicic

"The stretch circle, in which the horse stretches forward and downward on a 20-metre circle in rising trot, is a movement in all training and first level tests. The fact that it has a coefficient of two (which doubles its value) in all but one of the six tests at those levels is an indication of its importance on the training scale. It is not only a test movement, however; the horse's ability and willingness to stretch forward into the contact should be tested often in the training at home. The purpose of the stretch circle is to demonstrate that your horse is supple, loose and engaged from behind. The horse should stretch forward and down with his head and neck while maintaining balance - which is demonstrated by the fact that the horse neither speeds up nor slows down on the circle. The horse's back and shoulders should remain…

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