The BHS response to rolkur concerns

Discussion in 'General' started by Bay Mare, May 18, 2007.

  1. Bay Mare

    Bay Mare

    Dana Green, a McTimoney Chiropracter and longstanding member of the BHS (35 years) wrote to the BHS to express her concerns about rolkur:

    The reply she got didn't exactly address those concerns:

    Dana sent another letter regarding their reply but at the moment I can't see either that or Graham Cory's (even more astounding) reply.

    Not exactly respectful replies to longstanding members who have welfare concerns!!!
    Last edited: May 20, 2007
  2. bexj

    bexj New Member

    Good lord, well that's certainly put them in their place:eek:

    I'd love to know which part of Heather's letter Mr Print FBHS finds polemic or offensive. :mad:
  3. Bay Mare

    Bay Mare

    I think that it's the fact that she challenges 'the establishment'.

    Did you see the bit where he basically says to Dana that he doesn't know what a McTimoney Chiropracter is? Arrogant .... well, take his last name and substitute a couple of letters ;)
  4. carrieh

    carrieh Benson's Mum

    Nobody in a high position within an organisation such as the BHS should ever respond in such a high-handed arrogant way. It really shows the organisation up in a very bad light indeed. Heather Moffett raised perfectly good points in a forthright but polite manner.
  5. Scarlett 001

    Scarlett 001 New Member

    All very depressing. Anky has been invited by Spruce Meadows here in Calgary to give demos in between show jumping events, and I believe has given clinics when she is in town each year. Whether this is the reason (and I suspect it is influential), at any rate it appears that many of our local coaches (and there are not that many) are starting to adopt overbending approaches to training - I've been talking to a friend who is a dressage trainer, and pure classical training (or even just training that does not overbend horses) is getting more difficult to find. I am thinking of giving up on dressage in any serious way, and just messing about and having fun with my horse.
    Last edited: May 18, 2007
  6. DavidH

    DavidH BSJA-Big Scarey Jump Asso

    Standing outside an orgainisation beating it with a stick will never change anything.
    Its interesting that heather takes the exact approach with the BHS that she so abhors in the horse world.
  7. Bay Mare

    Bay Mare

    Erm ... Heather is a long standing member and Dana is a member of 35 years so hardly 'standing outside' of the BHS.

    Does the fact that Patrick Print can be so dismissive of a member of 35 years not bother you at all?

    Irrespective of your thoughts on Heather and her forthright views I can't see that anyone can condone the reply that Dana got! Prints' dismissive attitude to a well known profession (McT) just shows what kind of person we've got running the joint (and, yes, I am a member and have been for many years).
  8. Skib

    Skib New Member

    I share these concerns.

    I agree too that when one raises concerns with the BHS they have a tendency to settle back into the "All is well with our long term professional members (i.e. the people who keep the thing running locally) and we dont want to upset them" mode.

    But this is a problem in all democratically run British charities and "clubs". In the case of rollkur, the BHS has a dual role - a welfare organisation and a training organsiation. This is an instance where the two could be in conflict.

    BHS train teachers to teach dressage and test riders in their dressage skills. So long as the international dressage authorities accept rollkur and the judges at major dressage competitions award the top marks and prizes to the star riders who advocate its use, the BHS is not in a position to question it. It is the other organisations which have to move first.

    My RI does not aspprove of it. But there is a danger that if a person protests to much about something regarded as normal and successful, they will be dismissed as "over-reacting." because prize money and prestige is so involved, this is already a politicised argument, German versus Dutch, or winners versus sour grapes losers?
    In other words we just get on with life and have to trust that in the end the slow and careful development of horses and kind teaching of students will prove its worth. My own grouses are different.
  9. Bay Mare

    Bay Mare

    That's very true but what worries me quite apart from the rolkur debate is their attitude to long term members. If they respect members of 35 years standing what do they think of the rest of us? They take our money year after year but don't even have the decency to give a polite reply to a valid concern.

    They could have answered a lot more politely than they did (there's another letter which hasn't so far been published) and to dismiss the resignation of Dana without even trying to placate her, not to mention dismissing a well known profession in both the horse and human world is completely beyond me.
  10. Yann

    Yann Guest

    Did we really expect anything else? I do think DavidH has a point though.
  11. *toHorse&Away*

    *toHorse&Away* New Member

    You have to bring down the establishment from within ;)
  12. india

    india Banned

    I agree with you on this one Yann.
  13. Lot1983

    Lot1983 New Member

    BayMare, in the same way that you mention how easily they dismiss members of 35 years, these people have been members for that amount of time, becuase they chose to.

    I think what DavidH is trying to say, is that instead of writing to the BHS to attack them and terminating their memebership, these people could have written to them in a constructive way, asking what was being done about the issue and asking how they could help.

    I abhor the idea/practice of rolkur, but there are ways of going about stopping it, and getting angry with each other is going to get us nowhere.
  14. Daffy Dilly

    Daffy Dilly New Member

    So if for example, I rang up and put in a complaint about a riding school (one of "theirs" infact), they couldn't and wouldn't act on it? :eek:

    I agree with what HM has said, but I don't think it was necessarily tactful. I wonder if she hoped to get them mad and spur them into action (almost literally!) but obviously it hasn't worked.
  15. Mehitabel

    Mehitabel New Member

    is sylvia loch's letter which is mentioned in heather's reply online anywhere?
  16. Skyhuntress

    Skyhuntress Trying to escape reality

    You know, I'm against rolkur, no question. I think it's physically and mentally taxing on the horse, not to mention contrary to classical dressage.

    HOWEVER, I have also met Anky in person and audited a clinic by her. Never ONCE did she have riders attempt rolkur. In fact, all I remember is her asking a student to ride deeply for 2-3 strides and then lighting him up again, as it does stretch the back muscles and regain their focus.

    As a side note though, I believe Heather was also wrong in her approach. Nobody responds to direct attack well.
  17. cough *hold up hand* ermmmm

    Whats Rolkur??? I dont do dressage only XC/PC/RC stuff......

    *Puts down hand in shame*

    Nikki xxxxx :confused: :cool:
  18. Scarlett 001

    Scarlett 001 New Member

    I have an aunt who is involved in animal welfare at very high levels on the international scene (she was well acquainted with the late Dian Fossey and met with her on several occasions - I say this to make the point my aunt is very high profile in the world of animal issues - and in particular, primate issues) - she goes up against international animal smugglers, wildlife trade etc. and has been effective in obtaining huge results. Different issues, but like the sales and training of dressage horses, big money is involved. Honestly, you do often have to take a relatively hard line and tough approaches. One bold letter is not enough obviously (and nor is a more "reasoned" timid letter), but I don't believe timid approaches have any impact on people who are involved in questionable issues related to animals. I don't know what else Heather and others are doing, but large scale actions are needed if this rollkur will ever be stopped from spreading. For example, believe it or not large-scale letter writing campaigns are *enormously* effective. My aunt is a huge believer in them, and has helped ban the export of thousands of primates by employing this as one part of her multi-faceted strategy - seems that the public (concerned riders at least) at large has to react and not just Heather alone.
    Last edited: May 18, 2007
  19. Lot1983

    Lot1983 New Member

    Over bending of the horses neck, into a false outline, believe to cause muscle damage and or breathing difficulties.
  20. Thanks!!! I felt really stupid there :cool:

    Now I can re-read all the posts and actually understand lol!!!!

    Nikki xxxxx :D

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