Totilas - Facebook may have Banned the Pictures But ...

disappointing video of Totilas emerged this year showing a somewhat lackluster and deadened dressage performance at Vechta which caused a little bit of uproar from people who questioned what had happened to him or had Totilas just lost his love and sparkle for Grand Prix Dressage

So I'm sure the pressure was on for Rath to up his game and get Totilas back to loving life, being more upbeat and extravagant in his dressage paces once again. But I'm just not sure what to make of the latest photos to emerge of the two of them - the following were taken in the warm up ring before their test in Hagen (where they won the Grand Prix class with a score of 83.809%)

Matthias Alexander Rath has come forward to say that he does not use rollkur as a method of training. When questioned Klaus-Matin Rath (father and coach) said "Totilas has been trained for six years this way, if you take over a horse and try to work only in your own riding method yo find out very quickly that it is not an easy work. Overtime you can progressively change".

Matthias Alexander Rath went on to say " We did changes working at home in winter and he is better in front o the leg, there is more submissiveness but we are not doing the rollkur".

I've heard that Edward Gal used the rollkur hence that Rath has to do the same ... which totally goes against what he said? The pictures clearly show him doing it and it could be argued that they are a snapshot of his warm-up and not a true representation of how he was riding ...  but there are quite a few of these 'snapshots' in the same outline for it to be a once off movement that just got badly captured. He seems to be using force in every picture and Totilas' head is yanked into his chest, his outline is broken and his legs are trailing. Sorry but I think he is guilty as charged! 

Strangely though all the pictures from the warm up have been banned and removed from Facebook which I think says it all. Why are they being removed? Surely if the Rath family felt Totilas was happy and comfortable being ridden like this then surely they would let the images be available to the public?

What do you think? Is he guilty or do you believe that Totilas really does need to be ridden in this way to get the best performance from him?

Here is a video of their winning test in Hagen


  1. No, it is not true that this horse has been ridden this way by Gal.
    Both routines have been completely overscored. The horses head was bumping up and down in piaff an passage and the head is the most time behind vertical line. In the left half pass he lost bending and the horse lost uphill movement as well in all paces. Passage and piaff are flat. In former times the horse lifted up and down the whole body. Now the horse lift only his feet from the ground. Out of balance. Under Gal he never had mistakes in changes and Gal gives only minor aids. Now Rath throws himself from side to side. No it is not the same horse. It looks broken but still trying to get rid of the aids from the rider. Think he has trouble with his back and legs meanwhile but pain Rath is given him is higher and every moment the horse sees a chance it tries to run away under the rider.

  2. this horse looks very uncontroled. he looks like the rider is giving him sloppy aids. The rider her looks like shit. totilas doesn't look happy, and i sure as hell know that paint Gal riding him.