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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug. 25, 2012
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    157

    Default Calling all US AA's................

    Please take a look.... Janet Foy has announced:

    The USEF Dressage Committee has formed a sub-committee (members: Janet Foy, Hilary Clayton,
    Lisa Goretta, Axel Steiner and Jayne Ayers). This committee is tasked with helping the Adult Amateur community in dressage
    reach their goals. Read more.....

    Janet's Blog: http://janetfoy.wordpress.com/2012/1...ee-for-usefdc/

    If you are on FB please visit the Adult Amateure Dressage Initiative page. https://www.facebook.com/TheAdultAma...sageInitiative

    Mission statement:

    "This page is for the advancement of the Adult Amateur Dressage Rider. Our AIM is to attract USDF and USEF members to this site in order to discuss and develop ideas that we will present, as a united front, to our national organizations to implement FOR US! We are working for greater recognition in the programing for, and funding of, the Adult Amateur Dressage Riders in the USA by the USDF and the USEF. We are lobbying our national organizations for parity in educational programs, funds, grants, transitional classes to rise through USDF and FEI levels, equal access to elite clinics, equal representation as riders in said clinics, and, consequently, in the recognized competitions. As the majority members, and the absolute, ECONOMIC BASE of these oganizations, we are committed to bettering the education, the riding, the training, the competition opportunities, and the overall quality of the American Adult Amateur Dressage Community. We are open to any Adult Amateur Rider, any Professional, Judge, or Licensed Official interested in supporting our Goals."



    You have a voice, it's time to be heard........



    https://www.facebook.com/TheAdultAma...sageInitiative


    5 members found this post helpful.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr. 9, 2008
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    1,205

    Default

    You have a voice, it's time to be heard........
    The AA's have spoken....a lot.

    The "smurfs" try once, try twice, maybe try a third time to get engaged and have the decision makers hear what they have to say, then they quit trying to engage and move on.

    No need to go to FB....Let them read the "internet chat rooms" that they regularly diss at clnics....and perhaps they will understand what people at thinking....

    Perhaps the CenterlineScores blog might help with expanding their consciousness.
    Last edited by pluvinel; Dec. 9, 2012 at 02:53 PM.


    3 members found this post helpful.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb. 9, 2005
    Location
    Ocala, FL
    Posts
    1,786

    Default

    Being organized into a group gives the issue more Credibility and weight. Why not present a more united and organized front?


    2 members found this post helpful.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr. 9, 2008
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    1,205

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by lorilu View Post
    Being organized into a group gives the issue more Credibility and weight. Why not present a more united and organized front?
    If you have the energy, go for it! But the expression, "pushing a noodle up a hill comes to mind." When you're working several jobs, have 2 horses to keep fit, a house and other volunteer work, this just doesn't make the cut.

    Read the USDF Strategic Plan:
    http://www.usdf.org/docs/about/about...ategicPlan.pdf

    It was written in 2007 to revise its 5-year plan. It is now 2012...five years later. How much have they accomplished?

    Under their External Assumptions, they predicted what Centerline Scores is now validating.

    Financial Issues:
    • Financial issues can be major challenges for many people involved with horses. The cost of owning and keeping horses is rising rapidly.
    • The cost of participation and showing in dressage also continues to rise.
    • Economic factors may make dressage and all equestrian sports, especially on a competitive level, less accessible to people with limited income.
    • There will be increased competition for sponsors’ dollars.
    Under "USDF Culture" they address the questions you're asking. How much have they changed?
    USDF Culture:
    How can USDF create a culture that is more inclusive and less exclusive? Do we need to change what we wear in competition?
    How much of their own questions have they answered?
    Membership Value, Relevancy and Indispensability:
    • How can USDF increase its membership base and member participation?
    • In what way can the organization best define, fund, communicate and nurture the diverse membership segments and members who fit and support its mission in many different ways?
    • What kind of programs and services does USDF need to provide to its members, at all levels, so that they value their USDF membership?
    • How can USDF become of value to people interested in dressage but who aren’t currently motivated to join a GMO or become a PM?
    • How can USDF improve the overall quality of dressage instructors and USDF certified instructors.
    • What national programs for adults can USDF develop that are unique to USDF and do not compete with local programs (a national championship? - educational opportunities?)

    Image, Reputation and Brand:

    • How can USDF better position itself as the voice of US dressage?
    • How can USDF be valued for its work when a significant segment of the dressage community does not recognize USDF’s contributions to improve the sport?
    • How can USDF increase its image at the grassroots level? What do people think of USDF, and who knows we exist?
    • How can USDF get the typical dressage competitor to understand and differentiate between USDF and USEF?
    Here is what they concluded they must do...how far have they come?

    Value Proposition:
    (What we will offer)
    • Provide leading-edge innovative forums for dressage education and other
    programs that provide positive and enjoyable member experiences.
    • Understand what members will need, and don’t yet know they need, to be successful in their dressage interest in the future.
    • Develop the vision of what dressage in the United States and USDF will look like in the future.
    • Create new applications of existing training programs.
    • Deliver programs through a variety of formats (face-to-face and virtual).
    • Build a reputation of providing these leading edge programs with excellence.

    Value Discipline:

    (What we must do)
    • Develop a culture that supports inventiveness and innovation in order to provide
    leading-edge and innovative educational programs and dressage activities.
    • Develop scanning mechanisms to know where the sport of dressage is going in
    the future.
    • Create a program/activity development process that supports new program introduction with more thought.
    • Be willing to leapfrog current programs.
    • Operate wit financial stability and security .
    • Provide quality member service.
    To successfully achieve this identity of excellence, USDF’s strategic direction must support and be linked to this branding.
    Here is what they said they would accomplish by 2011
    In 2011:
    -USDF will be its members’ indispensable resource for education and training.
    -USDF will be an advocate for the improvement and development of competitions and awards.
    -USDF will be the recognized voice and information portal for dressage.
    -USDF will be known for its state-of-the-art infrastructure that supports and sustains its success.
    -USDF will be financially secure and able to support and implement its strategic plan.
    Do a search on this BB. This has been discussed before. Ask what does USDF membership get you?

    They want to be the "go-to" for education, then look at the "qualification" requirements to simply attend the FEI trainer's conference held in Fla each winter.

    They want to "Develop a culture that supports inventiveness and innovation" and then spend member's funds on USDFSores to compete with and duplicate what Centerline Scores did for free.

    I respect your enthusiasm and energy and wish you the best of luck. You have a big challenge ahead.


    9 members found this post helpful.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug. 30, 2001
    Location
    Purcellville, VA
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    5,927

    Default

    Some thoughts I had (and I am a Lifetime USDF member, as I did the math and decided it would take me more than 13 years to finish my medals as I'm an amateur w/ a full time job and it took me 5 to get a bronze)...

    Educational opportunities need to be discounted for members, giving members priority. This would include the rider selections for these educational opportunities. If there is no preference given to members, then that removes one of the "benefits" of membership. USDF would need to get clinicians and organizers to actually support this by partnering somehow.

    Reduce the application fees for awards and decrease horse recording/registration fees. I earned my Bronze this year, and it was an eye roll to have to pay $25 to apply, not to mention, this notice:
    ATTENTION: A large percentage of all rider award applications received cannot be processed due to score requirements not being met. Please make sure all award requirements are met! There are no refunds!
    is just shoddy service. Oh Hi, I know you were super excited you earned those scores, but it takes us a few weeks to get the scores into our database, and rather than run a quick query in our database to check for scores, we will just take your $25 more than once if you don't wait.

    And...just partner with Centerlinescores.com already. I don't appreciate spending your IT budget on a downgraded version of score reporting, when you could be improving things like above bad customer service application.

    I think I might like AA only classes in shows. Not combining with Jr/YR and definitely not combining with pros. I know it is not about the ribbons - there is a reason I'm working on "just the medals", because I have a "just a medals" quality horse, IOW, I work hard to get those 60%+ scores, but sometimes, it is fun to get a ribbon.

    I briefly considered going to New Orleans for the convention, I was interested to see what they do at the awards ceremony for a Bronze, and I've never been there, but in the end, I decided I need to save the money for lessons.

    As for ignoring the internet boards? I cannot say that I blame them. It is here on COTH, where posters disparage the medals program "just a medal score". Seriously, it is hard work to even get to the medals. Even Ann Romney only had 2 over-60% scores at Grand Prix and she had major money and a super good trainer helping her.

    The "I can quote every dressage master and tear apart every picture and video I find" sort are worthy of ignoring.

    Maybe I'll ponder this on my drive to work...as I have to get to work now...the curse of the working AA...the job.


    9 members found this post helpful.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug. 14, 2004
    Posts
    7,538

    Default

    USDF Culture:
    How can USDF create a culture that is more inclusive and less exclusive? Do we need to change what we wear in competition?
    ok, this is ridiculous! they think that it is only the clothing that is holding people back from participating?

    umm, what about the fact that riding well is hard work, riding dressage well is harder, having a competent trainer in your neck of the woods is a crap shoot, etc etc.

    its not about the clothes!!


    3 members found this post helpful.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec. 2, 2002
    Location
    Waterford, VA USA
    Posts
    4,831

    Default

    I'm with pluvinel on this 200%! The USDF is finally recognizing the fact that their money source (aka AA's) is drying up for a variety of reasons. What makes them think that after all these years we're going to believe what they promise now (aside from the fact that they're missing the boat on most issues anyway)?
    Siegi Belz
    www.stalleuropa.com
    2007 KWPN-NA Breeder of the Year
    Dutch Warmbloods Made in the U. S. A.


    1 members found this post helpful.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec. 20, 2009
    Posts
    3,193

    Default

    Interesting - I just looked at the requirements to "apply" for the right to ride in the Hilda Gurney adult am. clinic in Ocala next spring. Its more complicated than applying to a college...A video required, a whole host of questions re your show record, a recommendation from your trainer, whether or not your horse has been injured or out of work in the last four months, etc etc. And no explanation as to what they will use as selection criteria. Now I understand that there must be some process used to screen applicants - but why not explain that criteria; why not say that she will only work w/ x number or riders at each level - or no riders below XX level; why not say that it will be based on scores, or whether you look good in the video, whether you have a mare or gelding or whatever? Why not do first come, first served? If its anything other than that, you are eliminating people w/out giving them a chance. I know someone who rode last year w/ Lilo Fore (sp??). She had a fancy horse w/ a BIG price tag AND a BNT - is that the selection criteria? I would love to get a slot in this, but have a horse w/ a mystery injury and a light show record from last year for various reasons. Hopefully we will be back in work soon, but really, there is no hope of meeting whatever the apparent criteria are...Though I'm more than willing to spend the money and haul the horse up there, stay overnight, etc for the opportunity to ride w/ her... I dont know what the right answer is, all I know is that I learn best when sitting on my horse, I'm willing to spend $ for training, I've supported USDF for a BUNCH of years, and because right now I can't do a video, oh well tough cookies. This is a VERY big country, so to do one clinic per region likely excludes many people. Last year the region 3 clinic was way up near Atlanta; there is no way I'm hauling 10 hours for a clinic. Why not do more in each region? They get paid anyway...
    This is mostly a vent - discouraged re the mystery injury - trauma to the withers with no known reason, but definitely not saddle - frustrated w/ my goals, not riding, etc. But still I think some of the above points are more than valid.
    We don't get less brave; we get a bigger sense of self-preservation........


    4 members found this post helpful.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan. 29, 2002
    Posts
    1,605

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by 2tempe View Post
    Interesting - I just looked at the requirements to "apply" for the right to ride in the Hilda Gurney adult am. clinic in Ocala next spring. Its more complicated than applying to a college...A video required, a whole host of questions re your show record, a recommendation from your trainer, whether or not your horse has been injured or out of work in the last four months, etc etc. <snipped>
    Here is a link to the application, in case anyone wants to review it:
    http://www.usdf.org/education/clinics/adult/AdultClinicSeriesRiderApplication.pdf

    I think that it is the same application no matter who the instructor is; a generic USDF application for Adult Clinics.

    I chuckle at the question "How long have you been riding at this level?" Guess why?

    It seems that these clinics are geared toward the competition rider that is in regular training and has a horse with the ability to more up a level or more.



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug. 25, 2012
    Posts
    157

    Default

    We all agree.....there are problems with how the USDF regards it's AA's and we are "trying" to change that. Please, check out the page. Help and suggestions are needed from everyone. The only way to attempt to address the issues is by pulling together for form a voice. We need to stand united and demand that our issues are addressed.


    2 members found this post helpful.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Apr. 9, 2008
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    1,205

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by KurPlexed View Post
    We all agree.....there are problems with how the USDF regards it's AA's and we are "trying" to change that. Please, check out the page. Help and suggestions are needed from everyone. The only way to attempt to address the issues is by pulling together for form a voice. We need to stand united and demand that our issues are addressed.
    Again, I applaud your efforts. However, I don't do Facebook, Twitter, etc. Perhaps doing some searches on this BB, TOB, etc might give you some clues as to who/what has valid opinions. This topic has been discussed here ad nauseum.

    After working in business consulting for corporate America for 30 years, organizations don't generally embrace change from the inside. Unless businesses are on a "burning platform" that puts them in a "change or die" position, change is not welcome, and the climate is typically "shoot the messenger" when someone tries to deliver bad news and attempt change. Most would rather sink with the ship. Very interesting organizational psychology stuff goes on...denial, blame, etc.

    Some corporations have established "formalized" procedures to deliver bad news. They bring in consultants to query the organization, compile results of the survey and deliver the bad news to management. Then management has to address concerns of the people with a formal action plan. Usually this requires the power of the office of the CEO to drive the change.

    In business, the market place usually takes care of "non-performers"...eg., customers take their money and go elsewhere. The USDF and especially the USEF have "monopoly power". But there is no reason there shouldn't be another organization for AA riders....(that would send a shock to the USDF).....after all there is the IDTC and IDRC...why not the AA Club?

    Be forewarned, you tread in sensitive territory. I can tell you from personal experience that people who have tried to make change have been denied a ride at clinics given by "big names" in USDF.

    Just make the simple suggestion to open up the FEI trainer's forum in Fla to all payers. See how that flies. Suggest a first come, first served basis for USDF clinics. Ask about progress towards the Strategic Plan....especially the part about a "culture that is more inclusive"...see what answers you get.

    I do applaud your energy.... the younger generation in corporations always is more enthusiastic and embracing of new things. Some of us longer in the tooth just become curmudgeons.

    I say, go for it!!! We will cheer you on.
    Last edited by pluvinel; Dec. 11, 2012 at 06:25 AM.


    4 members found this post helpful.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jan. 10, 2002
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    Area VIII, Region 2, Zone 5.
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    6,615

    Default

    I know someone who rode last year w/ Lilo Fore (sp??). She had a fancy horse w/ a BIG price tag AND a BNT - is that the selection criteria?
    When our GMO hosted the Lilo Fore clinic, we were very careful in choosing the riders. We made sure we had a wide variety of types of horses and levels of riding, plus we wanted to be sure that we selected people from all areas of the region. Yes, there were one or two fancy horses (I couldn't tell you their price tags), and there were also a few draft crosses, there was at least one Paint, and a Lusitano, that I can remember. People rode from 1st level to I-1 or 2 (can't remember exactly).

    If you want a slot, apply. There's no guarantee you'll get a slot, but I guarantee you won't get one if you don't apply.
    Quote Originally Posted by Linny View Post
    Those martingales were so taut, you could play Ode to Joy on them with a comb



  13. #13
    Join Date
    Mar. 25, 2011
    Location
    Pennsylvania
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    Default

    I've been reading this thread over and over and just can't get up the enthusiasm to unite for change. I am trying to sort out why. It may be that this isn't my kind of organization -I like to try different things, I am not focused on one riding discipline. Also, I am not encouraged to join organizations that seem so fraught with details. Eh -maybe it's my lack of attention span. Let me say I recently joined another style of dressage and its organization (I'll not mention who because it can stir up strong feelings), but I can't help but compare the two organizations and see vast differences when it comes to rules, showing, openness (or lack of openness), warmth and a sense of invitation. Granted one organization is much older than the other, so who knows whether this new organization will suffer the same failings later, but for right now I can't be moved to try to fix/change the issues with USDF/USEF.

    Frankly I find the competitive dressage organization so complicated that I just shrug and do something else. That may just be me. Maybe I'm just not cut out for it. Meh.

    Paula
    Last edited by paulaedwina; Dec. 11, 2012 at 08:41 AM. Reason: grammar
    He is total garbage! Quick! Hide him on my trailer (Petstorejunkie).


    3 members found this post helpful.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Dec. 20, 2009
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    3,193

    Default

    pluvinel: Ahhh - Thanks for being a calmer voice of reason than I was in my current grouchy state. Your comments about change are exactly right on based on my 30 yrs experience in financial services industry.
    I would not belong to either USDF or USEF if I did not want to show and work thru the medal program; the rules, however leave me little choice.
    I liked your paragraph re making a couple of suggestions and seeing how they fly. This becomes change a step at a time. For example - I applaud the Dressage Foundation grants to GMOs, getting money back to grass roots levels, (with less paperwork than the adult amateur regional clinic ) I fear that the USDF, much like our federal government, has too big and too broad a constituency to be truly effective. Very hard to find out what people truly want and then to implement. I know there are regional representatives - I wonder how they really determine what their regions AAs want or need. Perhaps pushing some $ and authority back to the regions would be a good idea.
    But one place to start is implement the concept of inclusiveness. What would be so bad about 100 AAs showing up to watch a trainers clinic? What would be so bad about someone riding in an AA regional clinic on a horse that isn't going to make it to FEI levels?
    And though I'm a big fan of the internet as a source of information, the USDF needs to remember that very few (if any) of the good riders in the dressage world have gotten there by watching stuff online or even reading a book. Its a hands on thing and the more access we can get to living breathing creatures and experts, the better.
    We don't get less brave; we get a bigger sense of self-preservation........



  15. #15
    Join Date
    Dec. 20, 2009
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    Quote Originally Posted by SillyHorse View Post
    When our GMO hosted the Lilo Fore clinic, we were very careful in choosing the riders. We made sure we had a wide variety of types of horses and levels of riding, plus we wanted to be sure that we selected people from all areas of the region. Yes, there were one or two fancy horses (I couldn't tell you their price tags), and there were also a few draft crosses, there was at least one Paint, and a Lusitano, that I can remember. People rode from 1st level to I-1 or 2 (can't remember exactly).

    If you want a slot, apply. There's no guarantee you'll get a slot, but I guarantee you won't get one if you don't apply.
    Yes I well know that I wont get in if I dont apply. But sadly for me, right now there is no ability to do the video - see earlier post. Maybe in a month we'll be working enougn. Maybe next year. That said, I still think the PROCESS is too complicated (just one person's opinion). And I do believe that I would be more willing to go through that process if there was an explanation of the selection criteria such as you mentioned above included in the forms. Your choice of riders/horses seems quite well rounded and logical; but really not what I would have expected from having read the application requirements.
    We don't get less brave; we get a bigger sense of self-preservation........



  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jan. 10, 2002
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    Area VIII, Region 2, Zone 5.
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by 2tempe View Post
    What would be so bad about someone riding in an AA regional clinic on a horse that isn't going to make it to FEI levels?
    Have you ever actually gone to a regional clinic? Of course there are some horses that are going to get there, and some that are already there. I don't think our clinic was very different from the others around the country -- at least I hope not.

    Adding: I guess it's possible that some regions don't get applications from people with less fancy horses. They have to go with what they get in terms of applications. So I would encourage everyone who would like to ride in the clinics to apply, fancy horse or not.
    Quote Originally Posted by Linny View Post
    Those martingales were so taut, you could play Ode to Joy on them with a comb



  17. #17
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    Dec. 20, 2009
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    Silly horse - no need to get huffy - if you look closely you will see that our posts were happening at the same time, so I did not have your info when that comment was typed. And if you read the next one you will see that I commended your process. I will go to the Hilda Gurney sans horse most likely. Last year's was 10 hours away, so it wasn't a realistic option.
    We don't get less brave; we get a bigger sense of self-preservation........



  18. #18
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    Jan. 10, 2002
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    Default

    Sorry. We were posting at the same time.
    Quote Originally Posted by Linny View Post
    Those martingales were so taut, you could play Ode to Joy on them with a comb



  19. #19
    Join Date
    Jul. 11, 2000
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    Brookline, NH, USA
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2tempe View Post
    Interesting - I know someone who rode last year w/ Lilo Fore (sp??). She had a fancy horse w/ a BIG price tag AND a BNT - is that the selection criteria?
    Just to play devil's advocate....I just want to say...I hover around the edges of the dressage world, with my primary sport being eventing. But I have always felt welcomed: eventer, "off-brand" horses, career low level amateur and all.

    Case in point: NEDA had a symposium with Robert Dover a few years ago. When my instructor encouraged me to apply, I turned to look around the ring to see who she was talking to. At the time, I was competing that horse at beginner novice in eventing. Did I mention he was an Appaloosa? We had to send in a test sheet from a competition as a part of the application process, and since I hadn't done a dressage show with him, I sent in a copy of an eventing dressage test. We got accepted as the 1 horse/rider representative for 1st level in the symposium.

    That's pretty darn inclusive & welcoming, I think, and honestly, has been the case whenever I've gone over to compete/clinic in the dressage world.

    Me & the Appy at the Robert Dover symposium (warming up before our session started)


    2 members found this post helpful.

  20. #20
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    That's what I'm talkin about!
    Quote Originally Posted by Linny View Post
    Those martingales were so taut, you could play Ode to Joy on them with a comb



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