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The Art of Riding on Every Saddle: Livro da Ensinança de Bem Cavalgar Toda Sela Paperback – June 2, 2011
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Duarte focuses on the rider's seat and use of the lance to hunt wild game and joust. He also describes the saddles and the seats of the era, giving details of the straight-legged jousting/hunting seat and the bent-knee de Gineta style, but he provides only hints about how horses of the era were trained. Still, his advice often provides strong indications about the training style of the era. For example, here is a line from page 139:
"In my opinion, it is not the task of the jouster's servants to bring him the horse by the reins, using wooden sticks to control it or even wounding it if they feel the need for it; at the contrary, it is the task of the jousters to pick up their horses, to control them using the reins and the spurs, and to train them galloping along the tea [the barrier that separates the jousters], closer or more distant, in accordance with the horse's temper."
Dom Duarte also analyzes how human nature affects riding. Obviously a sage observer of man, he gives advice that often sounds quite modern. Here is his advice from page 92 on how to work with a beginning rider:
"So it is of the utmost importance that he gets a beast he can easily mount feeling himself safe, regardless of his initial ability or aptitude. And if he starts making mistakes we should not reprimand him severely, but gently and little by little. And we should praise him with enthusiasm whenever he acts correctly and starts showing gradual development. And we should act this way until we see he has really decided to go on learning and is actually looking forward to being corrected and taught."
For people like me, _The Art of Riding on Every Saddle_ provides a significant piece of the puzzle that leads up to Grisone and the increasing importance of dressage among the nobility of the Renaissance.
Dom Duarte, as translated by Antonio Preto, points out that to "ride well in any saddle," your mind must be confident and at peace. The horse has not been foaled that cannot sense your emotional state. Be safe and confident (not arrogant), ride "with" the horse, not "at" the horse. If you are fearful, admire the equine person from the ground. Also do not stand directly in front - get an expert to identify a safe place to stand near an animal that can bite, kick, shove and bolt.
My favorite advice from Dom Duarte: "Stay erect, no matter what the beast does!" Also, if you are of the jousting (or Working Equitation) persuasion, this book will help you carry a lance without killing yourself.