DVD Review: any Horse any Rider Relational Riding: A Universal Foundation Print E-mail
Sunday, 05 October 2008

DVD Review: any Horse any Rider
Relational Riding: A Universal Foundation with Michelle Binder, A.R.I.A. Certified Instructor

Produced by: Relational Riding Video Education, Copyright 2008
Relational Riding Academy, All rights reserved--$29.95 for DVD • http://www.relationalridingacademy.com e-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it

Points Of Light Farm, Spokane, Washington, 509-290-4301

Michelle Binder is a well known trainer in good standing in our region of the Northwest and a member of the American Riding Instructors Association (A.R.I.A.). As such, she is dedicated to promoting safe, knowledgeable riding instruction. Her purpose with this well done video is to further her teachings and inspire horse lovers everywhere. It is good to see such an altruistic product in the equine industry market.

Her admirable intent is to show a viewer how to teach a horse in motion to relax through the top line so as to enable it to arrange and engage its whole body better dynamically, thus improving its quality of carriage and heightening the comfort of its rider in a more natural and balanced way.

She effectuates this intent by introducing the concept of “the open rein,” a term I was not familiar with. My previous references had been variations on terms like “direct rein, indirect (neck) rein, leading rein, or plow rein.” In her concept the horse does nine things in response to a Forward-Up-Out action with the reins by the rider. Michelle rides some great looking horses and uses some seriously eager student riders in welcome settings to illustrate these responses.

I like many things about the video. It generally addresses disciplines (eg. Western as well as Dressage). It is super proficient technically giving special and careful attention to terminology; the lighting is optimized; the camera work is expert (4 different operators); and continuity is never compromised. Local facilities are used and all are sparkling clean and tidy. The scripting is concise and well written, plus Michelle’s narration is great, and the other narrator is superb. He has a fabulous voice. The student riders are young, bright, and attentive. Showmanship and professionalism are apparent, born of the obviously joyful involvement of the substantial production crew. The spick-and-span video presentation is greatly enhanced by the beautiful horses of various breeds who look to be enjoying their training and keep their ears on their riders.

To watch the Appaloosa, King of Broken Hearts (“Joey”), from Vision Quest Ranch in Fairfield, Washington is a special treat. It is great to see his “way of going,” especially in Part VI at the lope and canter, after I’ve seen so much print advertising on him.

The video is artfully packed with subtle information and, certainly, my eye isn’t trained well enough to understand it completely in one showing. Anyone can recognize the difficulties in producing an ambitions video like any Horse any Rider. I can see where it should be used repeatedly as an instruction tool, and as such, it is priced right. Give it a whirl and see for yourself.

Fasten the gate! Bob Howdy, PhD

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