Page:Equitation.djvu/331

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long as the horse does not move either forward or backward.

When the slow piaffer begins to be understood, I prepare myself, and at each repetition of very delicate attacks well cadenced, and in the tempo of each step, I lift my hand a little higher, make my fingering more pronounced and precise, and raise the four legs higher and higher, two by two in diagonal. I caress all the body of the horse a great deal, speak to it in an amiable and encouraging voice, and make my horse like the lesson.

Last of all, I complete the training by shifting my own weight from haunch to haunch, without apparent movement of the upper part of my body, or of my hand, arms, thighs, or legs. At first this shifting of my weight from side to side appears to have no effect. Well, then, I begin the slow piaffer by means of my hands and legs; but when the movement is under way, I cease the effect of hands and legs, and begin the balancing on my seat. I have to try several times; and then success is assured.

After each exercise in the time of the piaffer, I carry my horse forward a few steps, bring him to rest, and either abandon him, or let him be free to stretch his spine and neck.

In brief, then, calculate accurately your effects, develop your equestrian tact, keep in your mind the principles which I have always had before me, my deus ex machina. Labor improbus omnia vincit,