Seminars & Clinics

First study, then practice

We can not and should not have any hesitation or doubt when requesting anything of our horses in the saddle or on the ground. Any hesitation or doubt will confuse our horse, progressively putting him more in a state of disinterest towards his work or his rider. Even worst we loose leadership and the horse loses trust and peace of mind.

That’s why the seminars must be attended prior to the clinics so that you have the knowledge and techniques in order to proceed to the practices in the clinics. Most of the seminars are followed by several clinics of two days, each one separated by a period of time in which the student can go home and practice in order to digest the new knowledge at his/her own rhythm and speed.

The very unique way that the clinics are set up, give much more benefit to the participants than in the usual way. Most of the clinics are limited to 12 riders, however they are divided in 3 groups of four peoples, each group performs several times a day in the arena. When a group is riding a second group is participating too in the arena as a helper or assistant of the first one. This way everybody is involved in different levels, making the clinics more instructive, interesting and fun.

Seminars

Lightness

Lightness is a philosophy, not a style, so it could be applied to any style of riding.You have to know that lightness is for any horse – any rider – in any discipline; in the saddle, on the ground and around the horse. It is the ability of the horse to respond to the slightest request of the rider always with balance, impulsion and with brio. Lightness is not only a light contact with the hands or the mouth but the self-carriage of the horse, perfect obedience extreme sensitivity to the aids of the rider and a subliminal bilateral communication with the horse.

This is a two day seminar, with booklet and videos. We study what I call the global Lightness, not only in the saddle, but leading and lunging the horse as well, and working in hand with the long reins. From the body language to the horsemanship of French Tradition, this is characterized by lightness. We will travel thru the writing of the old masters and explain those, like Baucher, and why they haven’t been accepted or understood by the modern dressage.

For each of the principles of Lightness, we will propose a set of exercises to develop the tact and sensitivity of the rider and to develop the balance, agility and lightness of the horse. This seminar could maybe change your riding habits! Later, your horses will thank you. So be ready to piaffe, passage, pirouettes only with the weight of the reins.

Piaffe & Passage

This two day seminar will turn on the light to Piaffe and Passage, first gates of the high school. We study the definitions of the gates, then we see a full set of exercises to prepare your horse to be ready to one day start both gates. In the next step we see HOW to start the Piaffe and how to start the Passage. Finally we will study how to develop those magnificent gates.

This Seminar is for all-level riders. For beginners it will give them the knowledge and a way to follow. For more advanced riders it will complete gaps of knowledge or technique and will give them the tools to analyze any problems their horses may have in those gat

Dressage in the Pillars

Manuel is an exceptional, experienced and empathic trainer in the use of the pillars for the horse. Manuel uses the pillars as an inevitable step to prepare for collection and to discover and develop the potential for lightness, vigor, willingness, flexibility, gallantry and nobility in every horse he handles. If the horse is lacking in any of these qualities the pillars has a wake-up effect and can bring the horse to his highest potential. The Pillars can also be a tool used to clam down and relax highly spirited, nervous and give confidence to fearful ones as well.

The pillars are a great tool to develop feeling, balance and stability of seat for superior self-mastery of their riding skills.

Doma Vaquera

The goal of this two day Seminar:

Understanding the Skill and the Art of the Doma Vaquera, the dressage of the Spanish Cowboy.

Open yourself to the world of Doma Vaquera and appreciate how the Spanish cowboy with his highly trained equine partner performs maneuvers with expert timing and execution out on the fincas (ranches) of fighting bulls in Spain.

It is a true partnership. Watching the Vaquera horse and rider work in precise harmony and rhythm is fascinating and thrilling to behold. Turns on the forehand, turns on the haunches in canter, changes of lead, half and full passes, rein back, immediate halts and full gallops- all ridden with one hand – are some of the everyday movements the Spanish horse and rider must master to protect themselves from the horns of a bad-tempered bull.We will be showing great video and have authentic costume and tack.

Bits

What really happens inside of the mouth of a horse with the bit, is one more thing that modern riders have forgotten or that they can not get any more of this knowledge. 

However 4’000 years ago, riders were already using bits, curiously the designs were very close to ours.

Why not much evolution?

There are almost no books explaining clearly what happens in the mouth of a Horse with a bit.

Why such variety of design? How are the different designs used? Are we using the right bit according with what we are expecting of our horses?

A large percentage of trainers and riders are frustrated because they face problems with the mouth of their horse.They find themselves unable to solve their problems which in turn limits the progression and happiness of their horses.

The bit and the mouth of the horse are the most important elements of communication. The wrong bit in the mouth of your horse means you could experience NO further communication with him. 

Opened jaws, rolled tongues, insensitive mouths, heavy mouth or contact, forehead under the vertical, behind the bit, inverted pool etc… are types of resistances that result from bit discomfort.

When the bit is not the right one, the horse is trying to tell you something, just listen to your horse and learn to find the right one for him and for you.

This one day seminar will provide answers to those questions in a clear way and will give you:

  • Enough knowledge to understand and be familiar with the different designs of the bit.
  • A strategy to use and evaluate according the progression of the training of your horse and YOUR SELF,
  • A method to specify the correct bit according to your horse and you.
  • A way to upgrade from a current bit to a new one. 

Working Equitation

The Working Equitation (WE) or Doma Vaquera de Trabajo is having huge success in Europe and now is becoming very popular in the US.

Try it and you will love it!

In this seminar, you will have an opportunity to learn everything about WE. The rules, the phases, how to select the best horse for this discipline, how to train him, the obstacles and requirements, how to approach and perform each obstacle, how to ride with all the reins in your left hand, tack and attire, etc..

This seminar will cover the 4 phases and will explain the rules, obstacles, penalties, what the judges are expecting and so on. In WE, more than in any other discipline, it is true that prior to working in the arena with your horse, you need to know the rules of the game! Regardless of your actual discipline, you and your horse can gain from the training and the challenges in the WE.

Clinics

Lightness

There are 3 clinics, of two days each, to cover the basic concepts and exercises of riding in Lightness. But I could have done 30 of them, because it’s a cycle and as soon as riders and horses become lighter, we can continue onto a new cycle, pushing the limit of perfection farther each time, minimizing our aids to the thought and the balance of our horses to a sublime equilibrium.

In the firsts clinics we work under saddle on the separation of the aids of the riders to erase any contradiction in the instructions given to the horse. “Descente des aides” or Release of the aids will be study thru a full set of exercises to teach the horse, self-impulsion, self-carriage, self-collection and self-execution. We will practice jaw flexion, how to raise the withers and how to perfect the balance of the horse before any request.

On the ground from the lunge to the long reins, we will perfect the body language until the lunge and the long reins, keeping the contact with the horse are free of tension. In the third clinic we will study Baucher’s “Effet d’ensemble”, and persevere with more fine techniques towards our Conquest for Lightness. Those clinics are for any riders and any horses, no matter the level of the rider, horse breed or riding style. Lightness will allow your horse to improve quicker and will push farther the limit of his skill limitation, going higher in his training program and going over your expectations. You could be very surprised at how fast your horse could change. For the riders, some times the task is not so easy, some times it’s necessary to unlearn or to unblock our sensors to develop tact and sensitivity; but what a challenge!

Piaffe & Passage

This is a set of 3 clinics of 2 days each. Learn now what you have to do in order to get your horse ready to piaffe. Practice step by step the methodology to make almost any horse piaffe and passage. In the first one, we go through all kinds of different exercises in preparation for both airs in hand, with the long reins and under saddle. The second one is focused on the process of initiating the Piaffe and the Passage, in hand with long reins and under saddle. Finally, in the third one we study the techniques to develop the two airs, and make the necessary corrections to perfect the gates. This is a set of two clinics of two days each. In the first one, we learn and practice all the basic techniques of the long reins and of course in the second one, the more advanced techniques.

In my opinion, the use of the long reins is one of the best tools that a trainer can have to develop the collection of a horse and to teach him during the first steps of Piaffe & Passage.

If the trainer has skills with the long reins or in hand, horses will learn easier and even go faster through the learning process of this two airs.

For the development of the Piaffe & Passage, the long reins will save us time.

There are 2 mains reasons why I recommend strongly the use of the long reins:

  • The first is that the horse works without the rider and his parasitic movements in the saddle. The horse has trouble finding the new balance; the rider on his back will certainly not help him
  • And the second is that the trainer can see the entire horse working and can see better what and where he as to do in order to help his horse find the new balance.

To make myself very clear, the use of the long reins as I recommend will be limited to the work of collection, piaffe, passage and high school. The goal really is to collect the horse and not to improve the physical condition of his trainer running after him. That’s why, I prefer the words “Long Reins” even if it is not very correct in English. Most people are familiar with “Long Lines” which sounds to me seems too “Far away” and imperfect according to the distance where we should be behind the horse.

As the horse improves and gets used to the long reins, the distance between the horse and his trainer decreases until the chest of the last one is stuck to the horse’s tail and his hands on the horse’s croup.

These two clinics are for all riders and all horses, beginner, medium and advanced riders and horses. All levels can take advantage of these clinics to advance their skills. 

Long Reins

In my opinion, the use of the long reins is one of the best tools that a trainer can have to develop the collection of a horse and to teach him during the first steps of Piaffe & Passage. If the trainer has skills with the long reins or in hand, horses will learn easier and even go faster through the learning process of this two airs. For the development of the Piaffe & Passage, the long reins will save us time.

There are 2 mains reasons why I recommend strongly the use of the long reins:

  • The first is that the horse works without the rider and his parasitic movements in the saddle. The horse has trouble finding the new balance; the rider on his back will certainly not help him.
  • And the second is that the trainer can see the entire horse working and can see better what and where he as to do in order to help his horse find the new balance.

To make myself very clear, the use of the long reins as I recommend will be limited to the work of collection, piaffe, passage and high school. The goal really is to collect the horse and not to improve the physical condition of his trainer running after him. That’s why, I prefer the words “Long Reins” even if it is not very correct in English. Most people are familiar with “Long Lines” which sounds to me seems too “Far away” and imperfect according to the distance where we should be behind the horse. As the horse improves and gets used to the long reins, the distance between the horse and his trainer decreases until the chest of the last one is stuck to the horse’s tail and his hands on the horse’s croup.

Pied-A-Terre

Like a puzzle, piece by piece

We learned or will learn, for new participants, the Pied-A-Terre section of classical dressage. Pied-A-Terre includes the Long Reins, the work In-hand and the Dressage in the Pillars

This clinic will treat the 2 first elements composing Pied-A-Terre. First timers are welcome, the will work accordingly to their skill level and horse’s training. It is all about making your horse better, more balanced, more collected

Collection for Dummies

Like the book series for Dummies, this clinic will treat collection from A to Z, from zero to the highest level in two parts.


While presenting clinics, teaching seminars and giving lessons, Manuel was struck by the participants hunger for knowledge and correct training principles for collection.


Most students felt that collection was an unattainable goal, a mystery, something better left for the more advanced horse and rider. Collection was not possible for them.

This clinic will give you the correct knowledge, the right tools, a discerning eye and seat so that collection can be effortless.


In part I, we did work on developing the rider’s feel in the saddle, feeling the lifting of the horse’s leg, the movement of the back, shoulder etc. We also did work on perfecting timing of the aids, effectiveness of each aid, and several effects of seat, legs and hands.


In part II, we will refresh the techniques learned in the first part and we will continue developing the rider’s feeling regarding collection.


Riders will be helped by an assistant. Each rider will also assist other riders.
Why is collection so elusive to the average rider? Why does collection seem to be reserved for upper level riders and horses?


This clinic will give you an organized system for obtaining the correct formula to ride collection presented in a way to meet the needs of the average rider.

Doma Vaquera

This is a set of 3 clinics of 2 days each. We will go thru all the exercises of Doma Vaquera of the test “Caballos iniciados” (initiated horses) and “Caballos Domados” (for advanced horses). In the Spanish way and with the Spanish traditions. However our main goal is to play and have fun with your horses, that’s why each group in turn practices some of the techniques of Garrocha and Rejoneo with the Carreton.

Dressage in the Pillars

PILLARS ARE THE TOOL FOR THE CULMINATION OF PERFECTING COLLECTION. Almost a lost art, this classic training method is still preserved in all the prestigious riding schools such as the Real Escuela de Arte Ecuestre in Jerez in Spain, Saumur, the Spanish Riding School in Vienna, and the Portuguese Riding School.

Manuel Trigo is an exceptional, experienced and empathic trainer in the use of the pillars for the horse. Manuel uses the pillars as an inevitable step to prepare for collection and to discover and develop the potential for lightness, vigor, willingness, flexibility, gallantry and nobility in every horse he handles. If the horse is lacking in any of these qualities the pillars has a wake-up effect and can bring the horse to his highest potential. The Pillars can also be a tool used to clam down and relax highly spirited, nervous and give confidence to fearful ones as well.

The perfect seat with Pilates

This is a clinic of a totally new kind Kerry and Manuel have designed for YOU, putting together their knowledge of Classical Dressage and Pilates.

While presenting clinics, seminars and giving lessons, Manuel realized the majority of the students have a hard time to position correctly their body and use their seat efficiently. Students understand the words used by the instructor, but they cannot move their body correctly when told to tuck their pelvis forward, backward, not to collapse, collect their seat, push forward, take the position of the shoulder-in, haunches-in, haunches-out (Travers/Renvers), shift forward their weight etc.

Now with this new clinic, you will experience something very different as NEVER before. You will learn on a gym-ball and simulate all those movements under the direction of Manuel & Kerry, before practicing on your horse.

A revealing experience, You will finally feel each movement correctly. But that’s not all… Kerry will help you to fix, develop and give more strength to the muscles you will need for each movement with Pilates. Finally after this first part on the ground, participants will ride their horse and be AMAZED of the changes in their seat and riding. A revealing experience. “If you want a happier horse, ride him better”

This is the statement and conclusion of many of Manuel’s students after striving to have clarity in their aids and a good communication with their horses. This is one more reason why this clinic can help you greatly.

Two Disciplines Fusion for YOU, Participants will ride their horses, work on gym-Balls on the ground and will work with the Pilates instructor to fix their asymmetries in their body between the left and right side, to avoid collapsing in the core and to learn to use the correct muscle for each movement. We will also give you a personal program to develop your seat step per step. The Six Pilates Principles: A body/mind/spirit approach

Centering, Concentration, Control, Precision, Breath, and Flow.

For many, these six principles are the foundation of the Pilates approach to exercise. Their application to the Pilates method of exercise is part of what makes it unique in the fitness world. Pilates will change the movement patterns in your body to make things better in everyday life, not just your riding. In this clinic we will just skim the surface of what is possible to make changes in your body, but the exercises we give you will make a profound difference immediately.

The Pilates Method emphasizes the balanced development of the body through core strength, flexibility, and awareness.

Working Equitation

This two day clinic taught by Manuel Trigo is designed to address the knowledge about authentic WE and training techniques necessary to correctly perform in the Ease of Handling phase of Working Equitation.

The manner in which the horse transits the obstacle is very important, including agility, submission, working attitude, and ease of movement and of handling.

Try it and you will love it!

Regardless of your actual discipline, you and your horse can gain from the training and the challenges in the WE.

Don’t miss this exciting opportunity

to develop your technique and learn the attributes of the correct working horse and rider, indispensable steps before moving onto the Speed Phase of Working Equitation.

Flying Changes & Canter Development

This clinic is for every horse and rider level, any breed, any discipline. 

Learn step by step to prepare and initiate your horse to the flying changes

  • Learn to teach correct flying changes from the beginning, so there will be no need to fix them in the months after the first ones.
  • Learn to improve flying changes and how to put them together to ride tempis in a circle or figure 8.
  • Learn to improve your seat and aids for and during the flying changes.
This clinic will improve any horse and rider regardless their current level. 
  • For the riders that need to be prepared for having the first lesson of Flying changes soon, the clinic will give you many exercises and a sequence to get your horse ready for that day.
  • For those riders that are ready for the first flying changes, the clinic will give you a methodology step by step to request and get correct flying changes from the very first one.
  • For those riders who have individual flying change, the clinic will give you many exercises to improve them and start putting them together. We will also work on improving the seat, aids and timing of the rider.
  • Finally for the riders that have flying changes together, the clinic will give you a set of exercises to improve and develop the balance of the horse and improve lightness of the aids of the rider, this until peforming them only with the seat.

Musical Artistry

Too often riders have a hard time creating a choreography for a freestyle, a competition, an exhibition or just for fun.

Too many people show the same way, the same movements, in common and boring ways

Learn to think out of the box and highlight your ride. Show what you and your horse can do and not what he/her and you can’t do. Pick the appropriate music for your horse, it is not only a matter of rhythm and gate. Interpret the music to give an extra dimension to your ride.

Stop doing what everyone else does; do better. 

In this clinic, you will learn everything you could need for

  • Exhibition
  • Competition
  • Looking good and having fun with your horse
A new kind of clinic

Regardless the level of your horse, you will learn how to show him/her in the best conditions, how yo exhibit his/her strength and hide the weaknesses. Make it look like everything you are doing on your horse is easy.

  • Learn to exhibit your horse in the saddle, in hand or with long reins in a artistic way.
  • How to show in-hand in the most advanced exercises of classical dressage.
  • Learn to be creative on a horse, only the sky is the limit.
  • Learn how to interpret your music or improve on a music.
  • Learn to “Dance” with your horse. To prepare and create a free style.
  • Handle stress and keep the horse relax.
  • Many aspects will take the personality of your horse and your skill levels in consideration.

Artistic Garrocha

Feel the Flamenco’s or Sevillanas passion on the Spanish music, play with the Garrocha and dance with your horse.

you can participate with your horse or without a horse (Just on the ground with a garrocha)

Includes:

  • 1 x Lesson on the ground (without the horse) to learn the moves.
  • 3 x Lesson under saddle