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Thursday, December 8, 2011


Subscribe to Topline Ink to view the article taken from Antoine de Pluvinel's masterpiece:
The Maneige Royal here

Order your copy of this limited edition with free worldwide shipping included here


Decarpentry's Baucher and His School Article appears in Horse for Life Magazine.

Get a sneak peak at this not to be missed book from the insightful article from Nadja King at Horses for Life.

Read the article here

Order your copy, now in stock here


Read the excerpt from Dom Diogo de Braganca's DRESSAGE IN THE FRENCH TRADITION in
Horses for Life Magazine here

A rare glimpse into this special book, long awaited English translation from the original Portuguese.
A long time student of Nuno Oliveira, and scholar, Dom Diogo's sweeping narrative brings French Dressage with its origins through to Oliveira into clear focus.
Get your own copy here

Wednesday, December 7, 2011


Horses for Life magazine has just published an excerpt article from
30 Years with Master Nuno Oliveira by Michel Henriquet

You can read the article here

and to sign up for a subscription to this great magazine.

Order your advance reservation copy here


Our Copies will arrive in time for New Years. We will be shipping in the week between Christmas and New Years Day. Order your advance reservation copy of the first printing.

This classical text, which knowledgeable horsemen have been anxiously awaiting for years, is finally available in English. Henriquet's personal record of correspondence provides a unique window into the private problem-solving dialogue between master and student. Now a master écuyer in his own right, Henriquet embellishes this new edition with 50 photographs from his personal collection. This first and only English edition includes many more photographs of Nuno Oliveira and his teacher than earlier editions. It has also been embellished with a glossary and a descriptive table of contents for the 71 chapters.
Michel Henriquet was born in 1924, and holds a degree in Law and Letters. In search of elusive traditional classic French equitation, he believed might be lost, Michel Henriquet first studied with the Baucherist, Rene Bacharach, a student of Captain Beudant. Henriquet was among the first admirers of Master Nuno Oliveira, becoming a friend and disciple over thirty years, until the latter's death.

“I inserted between the letters, most of the notes I've ever taken over the years. They are, sometimes the ‘screenplay’ of what I just saw in the ring. In some cases I have carefully noted the tips and reflections that reveal valuable concepts. Finally, I note the criticisms and comments that the Master sent me regarding a working session. This body of didactic elements reminds all those who have had the opportunity to work with him most of his philosophy, in its most direct form. And for those who alas, have not experienced this instruction first hand, fortunately, it will add to the discovery that they can do by reading about his great work.” -Michel Henriquet.


Wednesday, September 21, 2011

'Gymnasium of the Horse' by Gustav Steinbrecht now on Kindle and other e-Readers

By popular request we have made this classic available on Amazon's Kindle . If not immediately, the book will be available on iPad, Nook and most of the other e-readers very soon. Prices varry but are reasonable and the book is portable! you can take it with you to work, on a train, on a plain, to Europe, to bed. Enjoy! And let us know how you like it. Don't worry, for those of you who like the old fashioned paper books, we are re-editioning this classic soon with a brand new cover to match. Look for more new titles this fall 2011.

Monday, August 29, 2011


Nuno Oliveira said of the author: “ I have the honor to declare that Dom Diogo de Bragança has been one of my best students and that I consider him as one of the rare riders I know who is capable of taking on the greatest difficulties of Equestrian Art with the greatest finesse.”

Dom Diogo de Bragança, an eclectic mind who studied languages, music composition and law, is one of the great equestrian figures of our time. His technique was built on a long apprenticeship with Master Nuno Oliveira (of whom he was one of the first students), which resulted in a natural horsemanship, full of tact and sensitivity. He acquired an amazing equestrian culture through the many books he studied in French and Portuguese and kept applying the theories he researched on the numerous horses he successfully trained. His vast experience and spirit of observation allowed him to present in this seminal book a complete analysis of the goals and methods of French dressage. It resulted in a unique synthesis that is destined to remain an authoritative text on this fascinating subject. Beyond revising the original 1976 text, Dom Diogo has added to this edition, a chapter on the specialized dressage for bullfighting, a form of horsemanship in which the horse, while flirting with the gravest danger, “offers us a breathtaking spectacle of beauty, precision, and brilliance.”

Dressage in the French Tradition is a reference for the understanding of classical dressage in which the horse, ridden with the greatest impulsion and lightness, displays his maximum activity in response to the minimum effort of the rider.

English translation by Michael L. M. Fletcher of L’Équitation de Tradition Française, 2nd edition, Belin, Paris, 2005, a re-edited, corrected and augmented version of the book that was first published inFrance in 1976 by Odège. It has had numerous editions inPortugal, the homeland of the author.


Baucher and His School NOW IN ENGLISH

Albert Decarpentry, grandson of Eugène Caron, a direct student of François Baucher is considered the most knowledgeable écuyer of his generation. He contributed actively to the influence of French equitation in his many books and by chairing the F. E. I. dressage jury.

This is the first ever translation of the master work of Decarpentry, now available in September of 2011 from www.XenophonPress.com

Baucher and his School (1948) is an original biography of the “greatest écuyer of all time,” François Baucher. Decarpentry comments on the discoveries of one of the most prolific innovators in Equestrian Art. This book comprises the equestrian biography of Baucher, an analytical examination of his method, and its lasting effect on French equitation. Decarpentry’s treatise is essential for understanding the importance of Baucher, a phenomenal figure in the history of equitation.

Appendix I includes excerpts from the memoir of Louis Rul, clarified and completed by his friend Eugène Caron. Their accounts provide valuable first hand anecdotes of the life and times of Baucher.

Appendix II consists of excerpts from ‘Baucher and his Art: Serious Warning to the Riders of Germany’ by Louis Seeger, Baucher’s German rival. Seeger studied Baucher’s method with malevolent blindness, but also with indisputable competence. With rigorous examination, Seeger compares and contrasts his own method to Baucher’s ‘nouvelle méthode.’ This counter-argument sheds light on the ‘German’ versus ‘French’ method that has endured even today.

One of Baucher’s lasting effects on equitation is the ideas of ‘riding in lightness’. Baucher constantly questioned his and the established methods, experimented and innovated through lifelong trial and error in search of truth.

“The appearance of Baucherism started a new era in dressage.”

NOW IN STOCK AND AVAILABLE FOR IMMEDIATE SHIPPING This historic work has finally been translated into English by Micheal L. M. Fletcher.

Thursday, February 17, 2011


The horse in the rassembler showed the degree of balance achieved in his training by working on a square of small dimensions, passaging on the sides, and piaffing in the corners. The terre à terre (a verycollected canter in two beats and often on two tracks, used to prepare the airs) is transformed into quarter pirouettes or into quarter reverse pirouettes in the corners. They worked on the square this way to confirm the horse to the aids, to determine the bend to give the horse in the voltes (always on two tracks in the old terminology), and to refine the dressage of an already advanced horse. On one square they exercised in ordinary voltes, on another square the reverse voltes. On the first, the horse moved with the hindquarters on the sides of the squares so that the forehand moved on parallel tracks outside of the square. In the corners, the hind legs moved in place so that the shoulders described a quarter of a circle. This is what the French called embracing the volte. They practiced the contrary on the reverse voltes, that is to say that the forehand moves on the sides of the square, the hindquarters travelling on an outside track parallel to the sides of the square and in the corners, the forelegs move in place while the croup describes a quarter of a circle on the outside. -Excerpt from Dom Diogo de Brangance's Dressage in the French Tradition. Available for September 2011 shipping HERE

La GUÉRINIÈRE's work SCHOOL OF HORSEMANSHIP available HERE affordably repriced at only $29.95

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Xenophon Press: How to to familiarise the horse with all that frig...

Xenophon Press: How to to familiarise the horse with all that frig...: "Progression to follow to familiarise the horse with all that frightens him. – To habituate a horse to the noise of drums, of music, and to ..."

How to to familiarise the horse with all that frightens him. Faverot de Kerbrecht

Progression to follow to familiarise the horse with all that frightens him. – To habituate a horse to the noise of drums, of music, and to flags, etc., it is in within the silence of the school, and not outside, that the rider must give the lesson. He must follow an extensive gradation. For the drum for example, the lesson begins with several strikes of the stick. As soon as the horse is disturbed, stop the noise, calm him down, flatter him, start over, etc. Give this lesson with the drummer at the halt at the beginning, and then have the drummer march towards the horse. Everything in progression. For gunfire, hold him far away at the beginning, even very far away, and then approach the shooter almost imperceptibly.
Should the rider happen upon an object that the horse fears, he must guard against trying to approach the object with vigour. On the contrary, let the horse be as far away as he wants from the subject of his fright, and give (the reins) completely. Use the rein and leg as little as possible. Pass and re-pass the object many times, far away to start, and then closer and closer as the horse pays less attention to the object that frightened him in the beginning. To achieve his goal more safely and more quickly, the rider should begin by giving in hand every lesson intended to tame a horse, to reassure him, and to familiarise him with that which worries him or frightens him. -Faverot de Kerbrecht available here

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Subject: Endotapping
Hi Richard,

So, what can you tell me about Endotapping? Have you worked with your horses with this method?

I have a client that just bought a Friesian that is totally shut down to the whip and spur. Just thinking of ways to get him out of this defensive armor...I had not heard of it before.


Well first I would take the spurs off since they don't work. Then I would look at the 9 minute YouTube video for free on 'What is Endotapping' which is very pleasant but doesn't tell you how. Then I would get an Endostick (42" length) along with the 2DVD set available at www.XenophonPress.com . The horse learns first to Relax, then to Activate, in the beginning the horse may Resist or Ignore. These are normal in the process. The tapping is done on acupuncture meridian points that have been used in Chinese medicine for thousands of years. I have a 6 year old that wouldn't go, every time you did a downward transition to walk, he would just coil and then either rear or go nowhere or go sideways into a nearby object. I started the Endotapping from the ground (you know I am extremely skeptical of all gadgets! and extra equipment) The tapping actually releases endorphins, so it has the opposite effect of the whip, which causes a sting and pain. I tap from behind by reaching back to make sure he will go forward, then right by my calf to teach him the tapping calf aid, on the shoulder if he bullies or charges through the shoulder etc. The horse is now staying in the arena (with no walls) and cheerfully going forward. I learned about it from J.P. Giacomini who used to be in Pebble Beach in the 1980s and ended up teaching our friend M.W. who moved there. I was actually looking for a translator when I called J.P. Now I ride all of our horses, including some pretty big, dull Dutch horses, and have taken the spurs off. I am using the Endotapping in hand stick (6' long) now instead of the in hand whip for teaching piaffe and passage and the horses no longer kick out, but work in relaxation with better movement and more activity.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Ok, this Endotapping by J.P. Giacomini presented in his two volume DVD set, completely bargain priced at 64.95 really works. I have tested it on 6 completely different horses. The latest, our coming 6 year old had been completely soured to the whip of any kind. He would either kick out at the whip, or while undersaddle plant himself and stop moving. I started using the Endotapping stick along with the detailed instructions on the DVD set a week ago, he is now going forward undersaddle with light taps from my leg, stays in the arena, cheerfully canters, does all of the transitions up and down without hessitation and with delight. The Endotapping stick is not a whip, it creates endorphines and relaxes the horse then activates him. Simply unbelieveable. I am very skeptical of any technology but this method of relaxation has been around in Chinese medicine for thousands of years and has been proven to work on humans. Wouldn't you like to tap your horse with the 'stick' and have him relax and not tense from it? That's what I always wanted and now have. Then the horse learns to willingly and without resistance move forward, or sideways in complete accord with the rider's wishes. It takes skill and brains but so does good riding. Get the dvd's and see for yourself. available at http://easternshorecollection.com/J-P-Giacomini-Presents-Endotapping-2-DVDs-6018.htm

Dom Diogo da Brangance Excerpt

"The limit of flexibility is attained when the horse will not go more forward in the requested gait. This is what is happening if the horse, chomping his bit to an excess while at the halt, departs at the canter when the trot or the walk has been requested. The rider can be sure that the mobility of the jaw has been brought to the point of exaggeration. Another example: If the trainer wants his mount to halt perfectly, but the horse engages and mobilizes his hindquarters, putting himself into what one could call “agitated stop;” we must conclude that the flexibility of the hindquarters has been pushed too far."

Excerpt from Equitation in the French Tradition by Dom Diogo da Brangance to be published in English by www.XenophonPress.com in Spring of 2011

Saturday, February 5, 2011

We are fortuanate enough to have obtained a few copies of Harry Boldt's English Translation of 'The Dressage Horse' Chapter III. This book is does a fantastic job of describing and diagramming the aids like no other book. It is out of print and these are some of the only remaining copies. You can order your own copy at http://www.xenophonpress.com/ while they last. They are very difficult to find and an incredible resource to have at your finger tips.