This book contains the best of the world’s largest collection of conformation photos of horses belonging to people of ordinary means. Over 400 examples! Highly readable, this book is addressed to every horse owner and everyone who works with horses!
Chapter 1: The Skeleton — Basis for Conformation
Chapter 2: Analytical Techniques
Chapter 3: Type and Task
Chapter 4: Scale and Substance
Chapter 5: Growth and Maturation
Chapter 6: Balance, Straightness & Collection
Plus: Practice judging examples, blank forms, suggested exercises. Includes footnotes, bibliography and references, and index. 209 illustrations.
Conformation judging at its best is not just a question of ticking off faults on a list. This volume begins by asking the important question: “What makes ‘good’ conformation good?” The answer, of course, is found in the link between form and function. Here you will find in-depth coverage of essential principles that are rarely mentioned in other books on conformation, yet are essential to making sound judgements. They are also essential to a full understanding of the material contained in Volumes II and III.
Chapters on type and scale guide the prospective buyer to a solid understanding of what athleticism means—because, after all, we are not choosing horses just to look at them, but because they move well and can perform the task we have defined—whether that be jumping, racing, dressage, High School, endurance, working cattle, or any other kind of work. High athletic ability flows from optimum use of the horse’s natural mechanism. The chapter on balance, straightness and collection is especially important in clarifying how this mechanism works — and thus how to obtain the qualities most desired in under-saddle performance.
The conformation we perceive on the outside depends directly upon the proportions of the skeleton on the inside, and this volume offers many fascinating examples for study. Dr. Deb teaches the “palpation point” method which permits the student to “peg out” proportions, conveying a kind of “X-ray vision” for skeletal structure.
The growth and maturation chapter is an absolute rarity including time-sequence photos, a foal gallery, and maturation tables to help the reader predict the mature height and appearance of foals. Thoughtful discussion helps the horse owner decide when to “start” young stock under saddle. The volume includes biomechanical models, anatomical diagrams, dissections, and many full-color examples of good horses belonging to people of ordinary means. You do not have to be a millionaire to find or breed an outstanding horse!