Paul Stecken

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Paul Stecken
Dedicated follower of
classical riding philosophy

Classical riding philosophy, training of horses and riders

“Horses want to do the right thing!"

Retired Major, the late Paul Stecken (1916-2016), was dedicated to the correct and variated training of horses and riders his entire life. Starting in the Riding Regiment 15 of the Realm Defence, then the Cavalry Regiment 15 of the Defence Force, he was the Chief of the Rider Inspection of the Cavalry School as the war ended. In the 1930s, he assisted in updating the German Cavalry Manual for Training Horse & Rider, known as the HDv12, and continued to work for the implementation and further development of training that prioritized the horse’s well-being.

In 1950 Paul Stecken took over the director position of the Westfalen Riding and Driving School from his father, Heinrich Stecken. For more than 30 years he influenced the training of countless riders and horses, until his retirement from the office in 1985. He continued promoting the Classical Riding Principles through his work as a trainer, FEI Judge and team leader in International Riding. He was awarded the Riding Cross in Silver and Gold and at the age of 80 was presented with the Gustav-Rau Medallion.

The Münster born Horseman trained numerous successful horses and riders, leading some to the Olympic Games. He is known for being the mentor of Dr. Reiner Klimke and for training the Olympic champion Ingrid Klimke and her horses until passing away late 2016. In his publication “Observations and connections- findings of a horseman” Paul Stecken shares his experiences and convictions so that the next generation can continue to practise, develop and pass on his passion for the classical training that always has the horse as the number one priority.

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Related videos

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This series allows you to watch as Olympic medallist, Ingrid Klimke, trains the young dressage gelding “Just Paul” over two years. Even though the training conditions were not optimal today, this provides an opportunity to get the young horse used to a new situation. Watch how Ingrid does it!

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In order to ride fluid transitions between and within gaits, the rider must be able to coordinate the aids accurately. Having explained the technical aspects in the first part of this series, Reinhart Koblitz now demonstrates in practical terms what it means to ride the horse back to front.

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Just Paul Part 1: First Dressage Training Session with Paul Stecken for the Young Horse

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This video allows you to follow the young dressage horse “Just Paul” and Ingrid Klimke during his first training session with Paul Stecken!

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Develop and Improve Impulsion

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In her dressage training, Ingrid Klimke received regular coaching from her mentor Major Paul Stecken. In today’s training session, they work with the 4-year-old Trakehner mare Eternity on developing impulsion according to the classical training principles.

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Philippe Karl gives us not only a theoretical understanding but also explains how to put this into practice, today teaching a horse the canter transitions. He uses various arena figures and lateral work to help the horse. It is interesting to watch how the French Master teaches the flying changes, from working canter to counter canter on a circle. A high degree of collection is necessary before commencing the canter pirouettes.

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Videos from Paul Stecken

Paul Stecken Interview: Insights of a Horseman

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Paul Stecken has been passionately passing on his knowledge of fair and correct horse training for decades. In this video, he discusses his latest book, shares his experiences with the viewer and his opinions of modern-day competition horse sport.

Duration: 00:28:17 Minutes

Related videos

Just Paul Part 3: Dressage Training in Windy and Noisy Conditions

Ingrid Klimke

This series allows you to watch as Olympic medallist, Ingrid Klimke, trains the young dressage gelding “Just Paul” over two years. Even though the training conditions were not optimal today, this provides an opportunity to get the young horse used to a new situation. Watch how Ingrid does it!

Duration: 00:10:07 Minutes

The Successful Halt Part 2: Riding Transitions

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In order to ride fluid transitions between and within gaits, the rider must be able to coordinate the aids accurately. Having explained the technical aspects in the first part of this series, Reinhart Koblitz now demonstrates in practical terms what it means to ride the horse back to front.

Duration: 00:19:09 Minutes

Just Paul Part 1: First Dressage Training Session with Paul Stecken for the Young Horse

Ingrid Klimke

This video allows you to follow the young dressage horse “Just Paul” and Ingrid Klimke during his first training session with Paul Stecken!

Duration: 00:23:13 Minutes

Develop and Improve Impulsion

Ingrid Klimke

In her dressage training, Ingrid Klimke received regular coaching from her mentor Major Paul Stecken. In today’s training session, they work with the 4-year-old Trakehner mare Eternity on developing impulsion according to the classical training principles.

Duration: 00:20:01 Minutes

The School of Légèreté Part 5: Canter transitions, Flying Changes, Pirouettes

Philippe Karl

Philippe Karl gives us not only a theoretical understanding but also explains how to put this into practice, today teaching a horse the canter transitions. He uses various arena figures and lateral work to help the horse. It is interesting to watch how the French Master teaches the flying changes, from working canter to counter canter on a circle. A high degree of collection is necessary before commencing the canter pirouettes.

Duration: 00:21:19 Minutes