You are here

Schooling and Riding the Sport Horse

A Modern American Hunter/Jumper System
Paul D. Cronin

BUY Cloth · 320 pp. · 6 × 9 · ISBN 9780813922874 · $35.00 · Nov 2004
BUY Paper · 320 pp. · 6 × 9 · ISBN 9780813938301 · $29.95 · Aug 2015

A protégé of the legendary Vladimir S. Littauer and for more than thirty years director of the riding program at Sweet Briar College, Paul D. Cronin is a well-known and highly respected trainer and riding instructor. Schooling and Riding the Sport Horse is Cronin's clear and practical guide to getting the most out of your horse in a humane and sensitive way.

Beginning with a brief history of educated horsemanship from the earliest published riding masters of the sixteenth century, Cronin clarifies the differences between forward riding and classical dressage, and how at times the two have become inappropriately mixed. He then gives an in-depth presentation of the American forward riding system that is the basis of hunter/jumper riding and examines the ways in which a rider's position and controls are essential to the training of the horse.

In the system as Cronin explains it, the three basic pillars are position, controls, and schooling. In clear language, he walks the reader from the beginning stages of training through advanced jumping and cross-country work. He sets out proper methods of early schooling of the young, green, or reclaimed horse, based on freedom of movement under the weight of the rider at the walk, trot, canter, and jump; of gaining the horse's trust and cooperation; and of establishing agility and calmness in the horse at all gaits and over fences.

Schooling and Riding the Sport Horse is an important book on horsemanship for riding instructors, trainers, and amateur riders alike.


The system Cronin lays out is beautiful: simple, direct, humane. His book is filled with telling observation and advice that will stay with any reader who wants to improve his or her work with horses.

Holly Menino, author of Forward Motion: Horses, Humans, and the Competitive Enterprise

Written with convincing clarity, Schooling and Riding the Sport Horse is applicable to the amateur or to the professional horseman in a wide variety of venues in today's equestrian population. Cronin's book demystifies the concepts behind the modern forward seat and offers a legitimate system to the American horse show world to improve the quality of hunters and jumpers.

Patte Zumbrun, Equestrian Director, Goucher College

An excellent and practical application of Vladimir S. Littauer,'s classic forward riding system. Cronin, provides a system for developing rider position and controls, as well as basic principles, selection of the horse, and a detailed schooling program.

The Equestrian Journal

Interested in this topic?
Stay updated with our newsletters:

Related Books