When riding travers the horse is moving forward across two lines but on four tracks. When riding travers you bring the horse´s quarters inside off the track with a slight bend in the direction of travel. The forehand stays on the straight line of the long side while you move his quarters away from it onto the second line so that the horse is lightly bent around your inside leg.
Travers is a lateral exercise that requires a lot of bend through the body. Most horses find this a difficult movement when they are first introduced to it because it is an exercise where the horse is bent in the direction of travel. In this way it differs from leg-yielding and shoulder-in which means the coordination needed is fundamentally different. As soon as shoulder-in has been properly established with the horse maintaining his balance and responding well to transitions then he is ready for travers. Once the horse has mastered this movement you can start to introduce variations. You can alternate travers with shoulder-in or you could ride travers on a circle, in trot, as a change from travers on a straight line. But you can also ride it in canter to start preparing your horse for the canter pirouettes. In one of the next episodes we will discuss this topic in more detail.
Duration: 8min 52sec