Horses are complex creatures. Our challenge in training them – whether for competition or for pleasure – is to take both their instinct and intelligence into account, along with the other aspects that formulate a horse’s ‘type’: character, conformation, gender and breed. Perhaps you have a ‘hot’, sensitive, short-coupled Thoroughbred mare, and your friend has a placid, long-backed Warmblood gelding. Doesn’t it make sense that you work them differently? One of you must ride quietly and assuredly while focusing on stretching and relaxing the horse’s mind and body. The other must ride actively, compress her horse’s frame, and keep him from ‘falling asleep’. All too often people try to apply the same techniques, in the same order, with the same intensity, regardless of their horse’s defining characteristics. The result? At best slowed or stalled progress in learning movements and manoeuvres, and at worst a fractured horse-and-rider relationship – or even a ‘ruined’ mount. Now Grand Prix dressage rider Britta Schoffman has provided an in-depth key to the major horse types, as well as training ‘roadmaps’ for each. She explains that no matter how experienced a rider you are, whether this is your first dressage prospect or your fiftieth, every horse is different, and each one must be treated as an individual when it comes to planning and implementing a training programme. Training according to the horse’s type is something anyone can do. With the guidelines, hints, and tricks provided in this book, you’ll find ‘reading’ a horse before you get on him soon becomes automatic. And, whether you school dressage for fun, for competition, or to supplement your horse’s performance in another equestrian discipline, the six elements of the dressage Training Scale – administered in differing amounts according to the horse’s type – are all you need to ensure a happy, healthy mount and a thriving partnership.