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  1. #41
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    Edited to note that I was replying to Bluey's post.

    Who is suggesting that WD people shouldn't have to, or don't want to, follow the rules? If I was going to show in a WDA-sanctioned competition, then I would expect to fully comply with the WDA rules.

    If I wanted to compete in a Cowboy Dressage-sanctioned competition, then I would expect to fully comply with the Cowboy Dressage rules.

    If I wanted to compete in a USDF/USEF-sanctioned competition, then I would expect to fully comply with USDF/USEF rules.

    If I didn't like anybody else's rules, I'd go start the Tall Mule Dressage Association and make up my own rules. The TMDA Test 1 would be the Beer & BBQ test posted over on the Dressage Forum.

    Again, I'm just not getting what all the fuss is about.
    Last edited by NoSuchPerson; Dec. 25, 2012 at 08:39 PM. Reason: Clarify to whom I was replying


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  2. #42
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    Beer & BBQ test...yes!!

    I'm definitely not "defensive" because I have never ridden a dressage test in my life (and am still working out the order of the letters). But I think I *try* to improve my riding and I know that there are a lot of really good western riders (in my area at least) that might enjoy being able to show off what they work on outside the WP ring.

    How do you find out where a WDAA show might be held (I saw nothing on their website in the northeast at all, but I suspect there are shows that are following WDAA rules?) And/or how can I encourage our local show circuit to try it? (I would guess getting knowledgeable judges would be the key issue?)


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  3. #43
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    I posted earlier in this thread re: how I prepare judges to evaluate me in gaited dressage. I send an email to the GMO with definitions, videos, etc (never of me and mine) and ask that they consider offering it.


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  4. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by NoSuchPerson View Post
    Edited to note that I was replying to Bluey's post.

    Who is suggesting that WD people shouldn't have to, or don't want to, follow the rules? If I was going to show in a WDA-sanctioned competition, then I would expect to fully comply with the WDA rules.

    If I wanted to compete in a Cowboy Dressage-sanctioned competition, then I would expect to fully comply with the Cowboy Dressage rules.

    If I wanted to compete in a USDF/USEF-sanctioned competition, then I would expect to fully comply with USDF/USEF rules.

    If I didn't like anybody else's rules, I'd go start the Tall Mule Dressage Association and make up my own rules. The TMDA Test 1 would be the Beer & BBQ test posted over on the Dressage Forum.

    Again, I'm just not getting what all the fuss is about.
    Sorry, not what I suggested at all, although I see how it may sound like that.

    I was responding to the OP, that thought she could not follow what dressage demands.
    She stated that would be too hard on her horse, that has health issues keeping it from collecting enough.
    That is why I was agreeing that, for her, working/showing in other than traditional dressage as a discipline would be a good idea, if she was not going to be following the rules all the way.
    Western dressage maybe being a bit looser with some of them and so a better fit.


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  5. #45
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    A night of work at the mental hospital where I am employed sort of prepared me for where this discussion has gone. Thanks Bluey, I am indeed glad that you *get*and have tried to explain, what I had originally intended. I am glad that a venue, however "imperfect" has been created where myself and my imperfect OTTB might be able to dabble and have FUN. This is a hobby for me, I doubt I will ever take myself seriously enough to get all twisted up over any of it.


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  6. #46
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    Here is another negative with my using traditional dressage tack; my Tb loves to yawn and relax his jaw muscles. Usually after a ride, sometimes during. It's just what he does, I believe it's a big tension release for him. I just wouldn't put a cavesson and especially a flash on him and make him carry that tension.

    Also I was at a Buck Brannaman clinic a few years back where I watched Buck do a lovely half pass in a wade saddle. Light aids, just a pretty sight. So I guess that's what my goal is with western "dressage" (call it vaquero riding)



  7. #47
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    Have you ever seen this fellow, Pedro Torres? I love watching him -talk about lightness in a horse doing work! This is Working Equitation

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5895K-Xjupk

    Paula
    He is total garbage! Quick! Hide him on my trailer (Petstorejunkie).


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  8. #48
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    I know where you are coming from.
    I want to tell those very intense dressage followers to lighten up.

    I learned with some that were at the top, one five times national dressage champion and many other awards.
    Wonderful people all and they were right to not accept any but the best and know why it was that.

    One example, I was teaching a horse the spanish walk and was berated, as "that is a disuniting movement, not suitable at all for a dressage horse".
    Ok, I get that, never again while I was there did I cross those lines.
    We did what was proven and everything else was wrong and with good reason.

    BUT, in most other settings, you do what you want to do and you know, in the end, it just seems to work fine anyway.

    It is very insightful that you realized your horse is not a good candidate to be a happy camper with any kind of cavesson and respect that.
    Me? I probably would have tried one anyway, very loose at first and then see what happens.
    I felt it was not right for that horse, find a way to make it work, or give that up and not use one, even if the rules may ask for one.
    Or, like you did, see if another venue may be better for a horse you don't want to use that on.

    I would say, there may be some that start with other dressage than traditional and may end yet, who knows, in traditional dressage after all.

    I think that associations should not be restrictive, but open to give others a chance and I think Dressage is trying to do that, tentatively at first, without losing who they are.


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  9. #49
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    for the OP: to ride dressage you dont need to use a tight noseband... you also dont need to ride in a dressage saddle. there are good trainers out there that will happily teach if you are interested in learning.

    my "fear" about western dressage is that it will muddy the already muddy waters of dressage and people will get more confused instead of less.

    if you are interested in learning dressage find someone who can help you - and the good trainers are flexible and will work within the ability of you and your horse.

    good luck.


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  10. #50
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    oh, i want to also comment - i think what some folks are having a hard time with is that WD is taking the already existing dressage tests and rules, that were developed over many decades (actually almost a century now) and altering it as they see fit and saying it is their new sport.

    this frankly pisses people off. If you want to start a new sport - fine - but make up your own rules and create your own tests.... dont just take "ours".


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  11. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by mbm View Post
    oh, i want to also comment - i think what some folks are having a hard time with is that WD is taking the already existing dressage tests and rules, that were developed over many decades (actually almost a century now) and altering it as they see fit and saying it is their new sport.

    this frankly pisses people off. If you want to start a new sport - fine - but make up your own rules and create your own tests.... dont just take "ours".
    Oh come on, really? That is why people are upset? What is this, middle school? Did the WD people try to pretend they invented them or something? If this is honestly the real issue, that's sort of sad.

    What sort of "test" could the WD people possibly come up with that was "new"...horses can walk, trot and canter...there aren't exactly infinite possibilities.


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  12. #52
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    Wylde Sage said:
    "A night of work at the mental hospital where I am employed sort of prepared me for where this discussion has gone."

    This may be the best observation and comment so far!


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  13. #53
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    Interesting discussion. I know of a woman in Colorado who rode one of her horses to Reserve National Champion Western Pleasure and was long-listed for the Olympics in Dressage back in the late 60's in the same year I think. He was a tall Arabian stallion, Kishtee Timp. She has gazillions of Top Ten awards in every area under her belt..English Pleasure, Western Pleasure, Park, Driving, Combination classes. Those classes require riding with contact and without contact...they require expertise..she did these classes often on the same horses...switching "disciplines". It is not just about tack..it is about feel, balance, and knowledge. Her horses were correctly ridden..she wasn't a "kidney" rider. She schooled in her western saddle no matter what she was doing. She is a national R judge and is the most talented rider I've seen on any horse...ever. She just had more feel than anyone, and I believe could have held her own with the most well-known dressage riders of today, if she was competing now. I don't know what she is doing now, but if I was in CO, I would stalk her..to pick her brain. She's a tough cookie. Her name is Judy Wilder Wilson, and she's on FB. Just a tip. If I wanted to pursue Western Dressage, I'd go straight to her.


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  14. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by mbm View Post
    oh, i want to also comment - i think what some folks are having a hard time with is that WD is taking the already existing dressage tests and rules, that were developed over many decades (actually almost a century now) and altering it as they see fit and saying it is their new sport.

    this frankly pisses people off. If you want to start a new sport - fine - but make up your own rules and create your own tests.... dont just take "ours".
    Did all the fox hunters have this same kind of reaction to show ring hunters? "Those show ring hunter people are taking an already existing sport with its own rules, that were developed over many decades - centuries, in fact, and altering it as they see fit and saying it's their new sport. What they're doing is not 'hunting" and they have no business calling their horses 'hunters.' If those wussies are too sissy to ride out following the hounds they should just start a new sport, not take 'ours'."

    Or, sticking a little closer to home, how do you (the generic modern dressage competitor, not you specifically) feel about the classical dressage purist saying the same things about modern dressage that you're saying about WD?

    A quote taken from the first thing that popped up when I googled this question:

    ‘Modern’ Dressage uses methods of training that are not used in original Dressage. ‘Modern’ Dressage started using tools to get the horse to a certain point in training faster than originally intended. Why do people want to be at that point faster? I can give some reasons but that is just assuming. It probably has to do with money, competition urge, pride etc.
    So since people started using methods that were not used in the original Dressage, there has come a split between this original Dressage and how ‘modern’ trainers train their horses. The people who refuse to practice those modern methods still use the Classical principles and they are rather not compared to people who use modern methods (and I can understand as I am one of them) So there you have it, the difference is born, Classical versus Modern…


    Do you suppose the classical dressage proponents are pissed off because modern dressage proponents have "just taken" their sport? Should you be calling what you (generic modern dressage competitor) do something else, not dressage? Because apparently, according to the classical dressage proponents, what you're doing isn't really dressage?

    I agree with S1969.


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  15. #55
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    i am just going to post this from the other thread:

    Quote Originally Posted by Guilherme View Post
    During prior "discussion" on "gaited dressage" I did some research and found a memo from a USDF committee that was directed to explore the possibility of including "gaited dressage" into the USDF format. The committee recommended against this inclusion. Their primary reason was that "purity of gait" is a critical element in evaluating a horse. Given the multiplicity of definitions of gait in most gaited breeds (not to mention the fluidity of those definitions within the breeds) it was unreasonable to expect a judge to master all of them and give an intelligent evaluation. Some major breeds, like the TWH, do not have a breed standard; breed standards would normally be expected to include a gait standard. They do have judging standards and gait descriptions, but even among TWH enthusiasts there is huge variety of opinion on what constitutes a correct "running walk." IMO the committee was correct in their assessment.

    Re "western dressage," there are about as many styles of "western riding" as there are stars in the sky. Applying the same logic as was applied in the "gaited dressage" question how does a judge master all the various styles and how they affect movement?

    Any individual "gaited horse dressage" or "western dressage" organization can control these variables by setting out a defined set of standards that a judge can apply. They might look to USDF for guidance (formally or informally) but the program will be unique to the organization creating it.

    Personally, IMO the western and gaited folks trying to "storm the battlements" of USDF to get "recognition" are on a fool's errand. The practical difficulties are overwhelming. They are better off to stay in their own venues and do their own thing in the ways that they need to do them. If USDF folks have issues with those ways then I'd tell USDF to "kiss my grits."

    Approaching organizations like USEF or FEI for formal recognition would be a subject for another day.

    G.



  16. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by mbm View Post
    i am just going to post this from the other thread:
    Re "western dressage," there are about as many styles of "western riding" as there are stars in the sky. Applying the same logic as was applied in the "gaited dressage" question how does a judge master all the various styles and how they affect movement?

    I guess I don't understand what this is supposed to mean. The issue with gaited horses, I get that - they do truly move differently. But why would it be different to judge a quarter horse? Especially since it's been mentioned repeatedly that I could show my APHA mare in traditional dressage and it wouldn't change the way we are judged (although a paint or QH might not be as competitive in the upper levels).

    Or is it judging a WP horse against a horse like mine, that has been ridden "english" and not been encouraged to go around like a WP horse? I guess I still don't really understand what the "style of western riding" would have to do in the WD ring -- whatever other discipline the horse competes in should be sort of left at the gate, wouldn't you think? We see a lot of horses that go western and english in the local show series and the good ones switch "style" with their tack.

    Maybe you are referring to the style of contact with different bits? And I do see how that could be difficult to judge - a western horse could be ridden with contact even if the reins appear to be loopy. But it seems like that could be overcome if that's more of the issue?

    Obviously the proof of the judging will be in practice...and I think it might just be too early for it to be consistent across the country. Clearly what will make WD "legitimate" will be how it is judged, and whether the judging actually recognizes and rewards "purity of gait" in the same way that traditional dressage does.

    ETA: just FWIW, I don't disagree that it is too early for the WD movement to want USDF acknowledgment, and probably many of those that might want to try it won't actually care if they are recognized by USDF anyway.


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  17. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by fairtheewell View Post
    Interesting discussion. I know of a woman in Colorado who rode one of her horses to Reserve National Champion Western Pleasure and was long-listed for the Olympics in Dressage back in the late 60's in the same year I think. He was a tall Arabian stallion, Kishtee Timp. She has gazillions of Top Ten awards in every area under her belt..English Pleasure, Western Pleasure, Park, Driving, Combination classes. Those classes require riding with contact and without contact...they require expertise..she did these classes often on the same horses...switching "disciplines". It is not just about tack..it is about feel, balance, and knowledge. Her horses were correctly ridden..she wasn't a "kidney" rider. She schooled in her western saddle no matter what she was doing. She is a national R judge and is the most talented rider I've seen on any horse...ever. She just had more feel than anyone, and I believe could have held her own with the most well-known dressage riders of today, if she was competing now. I don't know what she is doing now, but if I was in CO, I would stalk her..to pick her brain. She's a tough cookie. Her name is Judy Wilder Wilson, and she's on FB. Just a tip. If I wanted to pursue Western Dressage, I'd go straight to her.
    Sounds like a neat lady.

    Little me, not by far very accomplished in the arena, a good 40 years ago, was at a small show riding a filly about her 30th saddle, just watching and they needed one more rider for points in their WP class.

    They asked me if I would fill in, so we changed my English saddle to a western saddle, first time I had sat in one, they could not even get the stirrups short enough for me, so I had to keep reaching for them, we went in that class and guess what, WON it.
    If you ride correctly, in those days, you could do well, no matter what was under you.

    I expect it is a bit more difficult today, the level of technical requirements more specific to each discipline.
    Ask Anky about reining.


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  18. #58
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    Guilherme's comment only applies to those who are trying to get USDF recognition and the right to compete at USDF-sanctioned shows.

    As I have said repeatedly, I, as a potential WD competitor, have absolutely no desire to be affiliated with USDF or to show at USDF-sanctioned shows. And, I strongly believe that the vast majority of folks interested in competing in WD share that view. If I wanted to belong to the USDF and compete in their shows, I would do it in a dressage saddle, wearing boots and breeches, under the guidance of a traditional dressage trainer. But I'm not interested in doing that, at least not right now.

    You (the generic traditional dressage competitor who is fussing over WD) are getting all fired up and blasting a fledgling discipline for disrespecting your sport and trying to horn in on your turf when 99.9% of the people involved are doing no such thing.


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  19. #59
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    OP, yes an OTTB can do anything, as long as it has the desire and ability. My OTTB mare had been started in a feedlot and was well prepared for any career after the track as a result. I could open gates from the saddle, sort cattle with her -- she'd get down nose to nose with a bunch quitter -- and she loved to jump! She probably would have enjoyed WD, if it had been available at the time.

    WD is in its infancy. There are currently three organizations promoting it around the country. The principles of training are the same, in spite of what the purists say. Yes, the gaits are not as "expressive" as we're used to in the traditional Dressage world. So what? Not all horses are Olympic quality movers. Some are "working" breeds, not "Sport" breeds. Not all riders desire to ride "traditional" dressage, but appreciate the principles behind it. Starting with the rules and regs of the traditional dressage world was a logical place to start. I do NOT understand the dressage folks who are getting all wound up about that. It's the same, but different in places. Let the WD's be! They aren't harming you.

    I think WD is a wonderful outlet for riders who want to dip their toes in the dressage waters. It's an attractive option for WP riders who are bored, or for older riders who want a challenge but not the danger of cattle work or speed events. Give it a try and ignore the naysayers!

    Oh, and Paula, Bluey has forgotten more about horses than you'll likely ever know. She's done it ALL.


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  20. #60
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    BTW, there is nothing in either western or modern competitive dressage about cranking a horse's head into a position. USEF rules wouldn't have to be modified for the OP's horse nor do WD dressage rules make it easier. They require the same carriage. More important, they both require that the horse work from back to front, using the entire circle of muscles to best advantage. The fact that horses with high set necks and uphill build are preferred for FEI levels has nothing to do with correct application of dressage principles.

    Sorry, I'm a page or so late getting my reply up. You can ignore this if you want.


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