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Scott Hassler

March 4, 2015

Throwback Thursday: The Seat Is The Foundation Of Dressage

In this Between Rounds column originally published in May 2008, our columnist discussed how he would like to see more emphasis placed on the seat for the benefit of the rider and the horse.

The subject of the dressage seat came to mind after I finished conducting my annual Young Dressage Horse Trainers Symposium last winter with guest trainer and friend Michael Klimke.

February 28, 2011

Totilas Provides An Inspiration For Breeders

While producing the next Totilas is every dressage breeder’s dream, closely examining the traits that make this stallion so special can refresh any breeding program.

Totilas may well be the greatest dressage horse we’ve seen in the history of the sport.

October 14, 2010

Understanding Who We Are

Our columnist points out the unique strength U.S. horse sports have at the grassroots level.

After the excitement of hosting the world’s top equestrians at the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games in Kentucky, it’s natural to get caught up in comparing ourselves to the rest of the world. As with every world games, there’s tremendous excitement to get behind our teams, to cheer them on, and to come together as a nation. These types of events fuel our passion.

February 12, 2010

Where Is Our Breeding Industry Heading?

Our columnist worries that hot trends in breeding are undermining the proven products.

It’s February, the time of year when people are thinking about breeding their mares. Due to the recession of 2009, breeding numbers are down around the world. So it’s a time to be even more responsible about each breeding decision you make.

January 1, 2010

It’s Important To Develop And Preserve Your Training Foundation

Our columnist cautions riders to approach clinics and symposiums with an eye on redecorating, not renovating.

Now that we’ve reached the end of our competition year for 2009, it’s the time when many riders are thinking about their goals for 2010.

At the same time, our country is at a critical intersection where the U.S. Equestrian Federation is developing a system to support our High Performance riders heading into next year’s Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games in Kentucky.

July 31, 2009

We Must Establish A Consistent Standard For Our Horses

Our columnist believes that we need to spend time on the basics so we create a solid foundation based on clear, consistent standards.

What makes dressage beautiful? My answer to this frequently asked question is a happy horse guided by a quiet rider, who is performing its movements in light self-carriage with expressive, balanced gaits.

May 1, 2009

We Must Build Depth Through Educating Our Youth

On the heels of the country’s World Cup dressage victory, our columnist hopes that the sport’s leaders will embrace the future.

We’re at an exciting time in the history of U.S. dressage, with Steffen Peters and Ravel having just claimed the Rolex FEI World Cup title in Las Vegas (p. 10) and the next big international event, the 2010 Alltech World Equestrian Games, to be held on our home turf next year at the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington.

Right now dressage can truly be embraced by the American public with our own stars leading the way.

February 13, 2009

The Horse's Team

Because we want the best for our horses, our columnist believes the support team we create around us is critically important to our horse’s development.

We often think of the word “team” or “teamwork” as individuals working together. Whether it’s the crew of people at someone’s stable or teamwork spread among the rider, trainer and groom, teamwork is generally considered in human terms.

December 5, 2008

The Economy And Our Equestrian Community

Difficult times require innovation and creativity, and our columnist believes our sport horse community will heed the call.

It’s that time of year again, when the national governing bodies are meeting to discuss new proposed rule changes, committees are getting together, sharing ideas and looking at the future, and breed associations are preparing for a new season. And we, enthusiasts in the sport horse world, are considering our plans for the new year too.

October 10, 2008

We Need Systems—Not Just Showcases—For Our Young Horses

Our columnist believes our national championship should be at least as important as the world championship for young dressage horses.

We have two major championships for our young horses. One is the prestigious FEI World Breeding Championships For Young Dressage Horses, which is held every year at a rotating site. For the past several years it has been in Verden, Germany, and will be there until 2011. Our second championships are the Markel/ USEF National Young Horse Dressage Championship, which has been held in Lexington, Ky., for the past four years.

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