SYLVIA LOCH BOOK REVIEWS
The Classical Seat
DJ Murphy (Publishers) Ltd - £9.90
THE EAST ANGLIAN DAILY TIMES, 26/3/88 reports...
Authorities on horsemanship have been attempting to define the ideal position of the rider in the saddle since riding and writing were invented.
This book looks back to the oldest suriviving text, that of Xenophon in Classical Greece, who declared.."I do not approve of a seat which is as though the man were on a chair but rather as though he were standing upright, with his legs apart."
It is to this ideal that all students of dressage aspire from Pony Club upward. Its achievement has proved notoriously elusive.
Sylvia Loch, who with her late husband Lord Loch ran the Lusitano Stud and Equitation Centre, the renowned dressage centre in Suffolk, has written a 'slim volume' of deceptive simplicity.
"A book so cleverly written and easy to comprehend," says Lucinda Green, Britain's top event rider, in appreciation.
The making simple of a subject which too many instructors appear anxious to surround in mystery makes this little book a delight. The author cuts through the jargon and makes imaginative use of photographs and diagrams to get the message across.
All riders of no matter what standard, aiming to improve their dressage marks - or just get fun out of hacking - will find interest and enlightenment here.
RIDING MAGAZINE REVIEW (1987) Gideon Williams (aka Elwyn Hartley Edwards) writes..
A recent addition to my review shelf is Sylvia Loch's slim paperback book The Classical Seat. Slim it is, but do not be discouraged by the size. The best things often come in little packages and big, as we learn to our cost, is not necessarily, or even frequently, beautiful.
This is a thoughtful, indeed even empirical study of the classical seat, and in it she exceeds the work of past mentors...
Her polite correction of the ugly German braced back position and her preference for the more elegant and far lighter French and Latin interpretation is refreshing and indeed, long overdue. Indeed, I thought the exposition of the back influence was masterly and her explanations and supporting diagrams of the pelvic influence and that of the seat bones is no less so. The summaries of the leg function are, I believe, better and far more straightforward than those put forward by Museler and even the far more perceptive Decarpentry, and her explanation of the 'right button to press' is ingenuous.
Finally, there is the emphasis on the hand. How I applaud her expressed opinion that 'today, less emphasis appears to be placed on how the hands are used'. To a large degree this small book compensates for that general failing, the position, use and lightness of the hands being examined with much perception.
If you wish to approach that state of being 'at one' with your horse, you could do worse than begin with this little book.
Currently in its 6th edition, this best selling paperback deals in-depth with correct posture, and how and how not to use the seat and back as aids. Leg, hand and weight aids for forward and lateral work are discussed generally. If you think you can ride, you may be surprised how this book will change your life. A must for all dressage riders, no matter how experienced!
To include post and packing, an autographed copy direct from the Author will be sent on receipt/clearance of a normal UK cheque or an international money order in ££s sterling. Dollar cheques not acceptable.
Order Sylvia's books now