dressage quotes

Nothing can compare to the feeling you get when you put both feet in the stirrups and get ready to ride. Sure, it’s something you know you’ve done countless times, but the start of the ride is like an open book. Anything can happen. And as soon as you sit in the saddle, it’s you and the horse, and nothing else. Every other sound is silenced. No other thoughts can clutter your mind, and your head feels clear and indescribable.

On a horse, you feel important. You feel strong. You feel invincible. Something as simple as a collected canter or sitting trot or the electric feeling of the connection in the reins can make you feel more alive than you’ve ever felt before. Nothing compares to that. Nothing compares to feeling like a real dressage rider. And that’s when you know you’ve found what you truly love.

There is no way to tell non-horsey people that the companionship of a horse is not like that of a dog, or a cat, or a person. Perhaps the closest two consciousness can ever come is the wordless simultaneity of horse and rider focusing together on a jump or a finish line or a canter pirouette, and then executing what they have intended together. What two bodies are in such continuous, prolonged closeness as those of a horse and rider completing a hundred-mile endurance rides or a three-day event? I have a friend who characterizes riding as “one nervous system taking over another” i often wonder; which is doing the taking over and which is being taken over?
—  Mr T’s Heart by Jane Smiley