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  1. #41
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    That's why I don't belong to the USDF because I'm not interested in showing; however, it's the USDF's mission statement "USDF retains the core elements first established in the founding meeting in 1973: the dedication to education, ........" that I thought AA's felt the organization was falling short on; is there more emphasis needed on showing and awards for AA's also? I guess I was under the assumption (my bad) that the AADI was created more because AA's didn't feel they were getting as many educational opportunities, not so much the showing aspect but I guess I'm wrong on that. Maybe I'm in the minority for not being interested in showing or awards.
    Last edited by js; Feb. 21, 2013 at 10:59 AM.



  2. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by lorilu View Post
    Pluvinel, all of your posts seem to be just wanting - no, baiting - to cause trouble. If you want to know what is going on, just ask! get on FB yourself (it's easy). Can you not agree that ANY effort to get USDF to acknowledge the importance of their AA members, and the fact that many AAs feel we are not getting our fair share of USDF's programs and opportunities, is a good thing? Even if it moves at a snail's pace? You can stand on the side and complain, or get involved and try to make changes.
    I am just a member, not on any board. Here are some items:
    Each region developed a list of 5 important items to work on with USDF. Here is the lin: https://www.facebook.com/groups/3021...3619520090351/
    Designing a tag line to be used on promotional items. A few suggestions are up for voting.
    Board meeting scheduled for 3/4
    A letter of introduction to USDF, addressed to Mr. Williams, has been drafted and, I believe, mailed.
    Exec. board meeting Feb. 4 minutes have been posted.

    FB is not the best format for groups such as this. But it is what we have.
    I don't believe for one minute that Pluvinel is baiting or causing trouble. I believe she is like me wanting more opportunity for AA's, asking about it but then seeing that once again a great idea is steering in a direction that isn't what she (or I) believed it was initially going. The Facebook page is difficult to follow because of the format of Facebook, conversations don't flow in a timeline or order. It's difficult to ask a question that might not be related to a current discussion, or at least without it getting lost in the postings. I would like to see the letter that was sent to Mr. Williams posted so we can all see what was said. I realize it's Facebook as the format but that may be turning people away, especially those that don't really use it much for many reasons. Which is why I asked here and bumped the thread up. It's impossible to ask on Facebook


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  3. #43
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    If you can access the Facebook AADI page, you can access the minutes from the meetings that have been held under "Files". Hopefully this can give you most of the answers you are looking for as far as the short and long term goals. You can read that it was agreed that FB is not the best medium and there is a plan for a website/message board. The "Laundry List" also covers many of the things people are most passionate about, most of which seems to be education related.



  4. #44
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    js, if you and Pluvinel (and anyone else) is unhappy with this nascent group, and the "direction" it seems to be taking, then you should get involved.

    (the following is in no way meant to let USDF off the hook for forgetting the AAs) It has been my understanding that in general education is left up to the GMOs. Some GMOs are more interested in showing; others have strong educational programs. By not belonging to a GMO, you miss out on the chance to 1: take advantage of any educational programs there might be, and 2. help move the club's activities in a direction you find important.

    By not belonging to USDF, you may not get the info regarding clinics in your area, or other educational opportunities. I know our region has a calendar, and non-USDF sponsored clinics are often listed.... and open to auditors.

    Again, FB has been a great way for ME to stay informed of clinics etc. at farms in the region.... once I friended the trainers, of course.

    I hope that the AADI continues to move in the direction of not only pushing USDF to offer more educational activities (which might likely come through the GMOs), but also to have them understand that AAs are the ones who have not abandoned the recognized show in these economic times. Let EF see to the needs of the high performance, world class teams and up and coming JR/YRs; USDF should take care of the base of the sport - the AAs.

    L



  5. #45
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    I was involved several years ago. Didn't like the tone of the USDF board, I've mentioned it in many posts on both boards. I will not contribute to them because they absolutly nothing to offer me. If and when they ever do then I will reconsider. As far ast the AADI, for the upteenth time there is no GMO in my immediate area and not enough dressage interest to try and start one. Again, its an area specific problem for me that I guess I'm just going to have to live with. That's fine. I and probably Pluvinel still get involved with the discussions so that voices are heard even if they don't participate, there is nothing wrong with letting people know what AA's are thinking. I'm not unhappy with the AADI, just seeing that like the USDF it probably won't have much to offier me in particular. Maybe one day I will have the opportunity to move to a more dressage area, then maybe I will get involved.


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  6. #46
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    Sorry; I don't keep up with the personal or dressage circumstances of other posters.

    L



  7. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by lorilu View Post
    Sorry; I don't keep up with the personal or dressage circumstances of other posters.

    L
    Quote Originally Posted by lorilu View Post
    js, if you and Pluvinel (and anyone else) is unhappy with this nascent group, and the "direction" it seems to be taking, then you should get involved.
    Quote Originally Posted by lorilu View Post
    Pluvinel, all of your posts seem to be just wanting - no, baiting - to cause trouble. If you want to know what is going on, just ask! get on FB yourself (it's easy). Can you not agree that ANY effort to get USDF to acknowledge the importance of their AA members, and the fact that many AAs feel we are not getting our fair share of USDF's programs and opportunities, is a good thing? Even if it moves at a snail's pace? You can stand on the side and complain, or get involved and try to make changes.
    I am just a member, not on any board. Here are some items:
    Each region developed a list of 5 important items to work on with USDF. Here is the lin: https://www.facebook.com/groups/3021...3619520090351/
    Designing a tag line to be used on promotional items. A few suggestions are up for voting.
    Board meeting scheduled for 3/4
    A letter of introduction to USDF, addressed to Mr. Williams, has been drafted and, I believe, mailed.
    Exec. board meeting Feb. 4 minutes have been posted.

    FB is not the best format for groups such as this. But it is what we have.
    Attitudes like this is what drives people away from USDF and other "dressage" type things. Blame and/or taking potshots at potential members is not the best marketing technique.

    Professional marketers use focus groups to understand what their customers are interested in. Perhaps an attempt to actually try to understand why people have left USDF membership or have never joined will go further than taking potshots. Talking to each other will only further the interests of those already purchasing your product (eg, already members)....the idea of growing the base of membership means that you actually listen to what others are saying.

    Some of us have actually devoted a good bit of time to making a difference (so don't assume we haven't tried)....but when those ideas go against the "party line" and are rejected, well, then we move on and take our moneys, energy and interests elsewhere.

    I was surprised that this thread was resurrected.

    Interestingly, after the thread was resurrected, I visited AADI link. They admit that FB is not best medium, but then they don't do anything about it. I would not have found their "minutes" unless I had clicked on lorilu's link....might be nice if AADI did better marketing and actually listened. I can't believe that js and I are alone. Actually, I guarantee we're not alone since, by definition, people who are not into competitive dressage don't post here and would not know about AADI.

    As the saying goes, "Seek to understand, before asking to be understood."
    Do not confuse motion and progress. A rocking horse keeps moving but does not make any progress.
    Alfred A. Montapert


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  8. #48
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    Pluvinel, you are not alone. I posted way back in the beginning, both here AND on Facebook that I thought FB was the wrong way to do this. I also pointed out to the AADI person (people) that having two FB pages with identical names made it even more confusing and disjointed. The response was pretty negative. I tried following FB, made some suggestions, and even volunteered to be involved, and was not included, so at this point, I give up. Hope they make progress, but agree that if they want to grow membership they need to include people who may want to try "different directions", and they need to open it in a way that is more inclusive, and they need more transparency so people understand how the "Board" and "Reps" are selected, what their bylaws or guiding processes are, and how to be included, at least in the information flow.

    Granted, I am just one person - but suspect there are many others w/ the same feelings. Many of my friends don't do FB - and these are the members that are left out of the AADI.



  9. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by NJRider View Post
    If you can access the Facebook AADI page, you can access the minutes from the meetings that have been held under "Files". Hopefully this can give you most of the answers you are looking for as far as the short and long term goals. You can read that it was agreed that FB is not the best medium and there is a plan for a website/message board. The "Laundry List" also covers many of the things people are most passionate about, most of which seems to be education related.
    Did either of you note at all that they are planning on a web site/message board format? The people that are the driving force of this group are volunteers and using their personal funds for expenses, like the web site. It is not going to happen overnight...if you read the minutes and agendas those will give a good flow of the direction. Yes, the FB posts are difficult to follow and good ideas get lost....thus the goal for the web site.



  10. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by NJRider View Post
    Did either of you note at all that they are planning on a web site/message board format? The people that are the driving force of this group are volunteers and using their personal funds for expenses, like the web site. It is not going to happen overnight...if you read the minutes and agendas those will give a good flow of the direction. Yes, the FB posts are difficult to follow and good ideas get lost....thus the goal for the web site.
    NJ....I have always said I support AADI....go at it. I appreciated your PM and support AADI.....but I gotta tell you, from where I sit, it sure seems the same-old/same-old with no indications that there is any openness to new thinking....as exemplified by the reactions to this thread.

    There is no need to spend moneys.....There are free blog hosting sites......there are AADI members with farm web sites already in place where a page could be devoted to periodic updates....places to get the word out. I know this because a group of us already did this when we were doing the stats study.

    Money is just an excuse. It doesn't take money to periodically post a simple (FREE) update here in COTH, UDBB, with a links to FB or any other site will go a long way to giving people updates to what AADI is doing. Don't expect us to go looking for you.....

    Marketers have to market...eg., to go where the customers are....and those customers are NOT on FB looking to find some group's web site.

    Mystic Oak Ranch made a point.....she tried to get involved as lorilu suggested and found rejection.....so AADI should understand that they are coming across as a Mini-Me of USDF.....

    As they say in marketing......perception is reality.
    Do not confuse motion and progress. A rocking horse keeps moving but does not make any progress.
    Alfred A. Montapert


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  11. #51
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    So.....AADI has posted their "wish list." It is a nice list. I wish someone from AADI would market this on public boards such as COTH, UDBB, etc....would help to get the word out and enhance their efforts....perhaps it would engender feedback and suggestions from the rest of the smurfs.

    But at least it is out there.
    2.27.13_AADIWishListDraft.alw..pdf

    May I suggest that the requests to USDF/USEF be SMART:
    Specific - Be specific about what you're asking for
    Measurable - Have some way of measuring before/after
    Achievable - Make sure it is achievable and not pie-in-the-sky
    Realistic - Related to "Achievable"
    Timely - Provide a timeline by which it is to be accomplished
    ....eg., be veerrry specific about what you're asking for

    The pieces and parts of a lot of what is being asked for are already in place. Now it is up to AADI to hold USDF feets to the fire.

    So here is how to make it SMART

    Item #1
    Provide more clinic opportunities for AA's at all levels including USDF AA Clinics in every region once a year (participation by lower level riders and ordinary horses)
    Item #2
    Provide accountablity to the membership for dollars spent on all programs
    Item #3
    USDF/USEF mandates SEPARATE pinning of AA's at rated shows where separate classes/divisions are not available regardless of the number of AA entries in the class
    Item #4
    Institite parity in support for AA programs and educational opportunities--at least equal to the money and effort they spend on Jr/Yr programs. Better yet, program support in proportion to the AA membership dollars that go into the organization.
    Item #1 & 4:
    Specific: FEI Trainer's Forum & L-Judges
    Measureable: Count auditor participation before/after
    Achievable: Can be done "by the stroke of the pen"....programs are already in place and scheduled. Just "decree" that it shall be done....emminently achievable.....if there is a will
    Realistic: Well, it is the USDF.....
    Timely: If there is a will, it can be accomplished immediately.

    The USDF already holds clinics/seminars (FEI Trainer's Forum, and L-Judges Training). Open those to participation to all comers. Right now the FEI Trainer's Forum has a litany of criteria. AADI should be specific about allowing AA's into that program. The L-Judges' treats auditors as 2nd class citizens....usually with the excuse that the it is a program for the judge. It is an excellent forum to educate AA's. It just takes the will to admit auditors as valid contributors. Auditors can ask those "pesky" questions that the judge-candidates are thinking but fear asking for fear of reprisal and not getting their card.

    Item #2 & 3: Separate pinning of AA's and accountability of funds
    Basically the same as 1 & 4.. All it can take is a "decree".

    I would hold a timeline, and who is is responsible.

    As a former boss told me once...."If you are not measuring results, you are not in the game.....you are just practicing."

    (I picked items that did not require "funding" or additional resources. Items above just require "will"....no money required)
    Do not confuse motion and progress. A rocking horse keeps moving but does not make any progress.
    Alfred A. Montapert



  12. #52
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    I suggested on the AADI facebook page that they make the application process for clinics more AA friendly. That is the one thing I've felt the USDF application process for their adult clinics were not really AA friendly, since they ask for show records/scores, trainer and trainer input, videos etc. and while I realize some of those things were optional I'm guessing if you didn't provide it you probably had a slim chance of being selected.

    Why can't a clinic be just something you pay for and either you get a slot or not? Why does one need to apply with creditials? Perhaps I'm wanting something different than most. The clinincs I have attended were open to anyone/everyone, you need only pay to get a slot.



  13. #53
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    Pluvinel, I went through the USDF L Program an I am an AA. It is a great education (albeit it pricey). The vast majority of the auditors in the program I went through were AAs, although most of the participants were pros (there were a few of us AAs in the group). I didn't hear anyone feeling they were a "2nd class citizen" - but they were auditors, not participants. The participants participate (and pay 10 times as much for that participation), the auditors audit. I don't have any problem with the way the program works in that way.

    I'm currently auditing the USDF Instructor Cert program, and it is the same - the participants pay 8 times what the auditors pay and the program is focused on them, but the auditors are taking notes and listening and watching. And, like the L Program, at the end of the day, there is a Q and A that the auditors can also join in.

    I do believe there is a difference between auditing and participating in a program, and I do believe there should be much more opportunities for ALL to audit. The audit fee is quite inexpensive - in a Symposium (such as the FEI Program), the fee is higher because the program is suppose to be more focused on educating the audience, versus the participants.

    I agree that opening all educational programs to auditors is a good plan, but I don't think auditors should become the focus of the programs when participants pay so much for those programs.



  14. #54
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    MOR.....All I was saying is that the posted list of AADI initiatives is pretty vague and suggested that AADI get pretty sprecific about what exactly they are asking of the USDF/USEF.

    We have discussed ad-nauseum that the USDF FEI Trainer's Conference (basically a horse riding demo) has more criteria to attend (criteria.doc) than a week-long course for how to design nuclear reactors.
    http://www.asme.org/products/courses...ection-iii--di

    All I'm suggested that AADI should present specific proposals directly.

    As far as the L-Judges program, I have attended 3 different A/B/C sessions and been a 2nd level demo rider in one. Perhaps it is due to who was the instructor, but definitely in one of the sessions, auditors were 2nd class.

    In the spirit of SMART, to be specific,.....a suggestion could be made to USDF to add a category to the participation to allow people to "Participate" in the A/B/C sessions. In that case, you would have 3 levels:
    1. - "L-Candidate": People on the judge track paying full fees

    2. - "Participating Auditor": People who want to participate but are not interested in judging - These people would pay some pro-rated portion of the program to participate in A/B/C, at perhaps 3/5ths of the cost of the full tuition......so if full tuition is $2500, a "Participating Auditor" would pay $1500.

    3. - "Silent Auditor": Just as it says, basically an observer, paying (last time i checked) about $70/weekend session.

    So this isn't intended to be a diss at L-judges program...not at all. Just a hypothetical example of how to be veerrryyy specific about what AADI is asking of the USDF.

    JS has another example of a specific request to be made:

    Why can't a clinic be just something you pay for and either you get a slot or not? Why does one need to apply with creditials? Perhaps I'm wanting something different than most. The clinincs I have attended were open to anyone/everyone, you need only pay to get a slot.
    Right now the AADI list is too vague to be actionable.
    Do not confuse motion and progress. A rocking horse keeps moving but does not make any progress.
    Alfred A. Montapert



  15. #55
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    Why don't you post your suggestions on the AADI page? (Oh, that's right, I think you don't do FB). They are good suggestions.
    And, it appears that USDF is beginning to listen. The editorial in the new Connections discusses AADI (by G. Williams).
    Regarding the L program, I have audited as an auditor, and scribed for candidates three times. Scribes can attend D and E sessions, and can get questions answered through their candidates..... highly recommended, much more learning!
    regarding applying for the clinics - I think there is an application because the clinics are specifically addressed to the AUDITOR, not the rider.... and they want a good cross section of horses. There was LOTS of opportunity for auditor questions, which were directly answered, at last weekend's Region 3 Adult Clinic (first in the new series w/Hilda Gurney). Most of the riders were AAs. Unfortunately, rider position issues took most of the first day - so it wasn't until the second day that I got to see training patterns, etc; which is why I paid to attend as an auditor. I do not know why those issues were not visible on the tapes provided - the application is clear that the riders should have fairly independent seats and hands and aids.... ut this is a topic for another thread.



  16. #56
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    What good is it to riders if clinics are selecting riders based on what will provide the most for the audience? The point of a clinic for me at least is that I am paying to get a private lesson (if you will) with a BNT, so I can learn and get the education I'm seeking from a trainer at a level I don't ordinarly have access to. I'm not there for the education or entertainment of the audience. As an auditor, I'm there to just observe the rider who is getting instruction from the clinician. I am not there with any presumption that the clinic should be geared to me as an observer. I am there as a paying guest to watch and hopefully learn. I don't want answer/questions from the BNT. I think we have two very different views on what a clinic should be. FYI I am posting my thoughts on the AADI facebook page, for the little good it is doing.
    Last edited by js; Mar. 5, 2013 at 10:44 AM.



  17. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by pluvinel View Post
    MOR.....All I was saying is that the posted list of AADI initiatives is pretty vague and suggested that AADI get pretty sprecific about what exactly they are asking of the USDF/USEF.



    In the spirit of SMART, to be specific,.....a suggestion could be made to USDF to add a category to the participation to allow people to "Participate" in the A/B/C sessions. In that case, you would have 3 levels:
    1. - "L-Candidate": People on the judge track paying full fees

    2. - "Participating Auditor": People who want to participate but are not interested in judging - These people would pay some pro-rated portion of the program to participate in A/B/C, at perhaps 3/5ths of the cost of the full tuition......so if full tuition is $2500, a "Participating Auditor" would pay $1500.

    3. - "Silent Auditor": Just as it says, basically an observer, paying (last time i checked) about $70/weekend session.

    So this isn't intended to be a diss at L-judges program...not at all. Just a hypothetical example of how to be veerrryyy specific about what AADI is asking of the USDF.

    JS has another example of a specific request to be made:



    Right now the AADI list is too vague to be actionable.
    Actually, the L program already kind of operates that way - you pay for the A-D1 sessions as a participant. If you go through D-2 and Testing, it is paid separately - and there is no requirement you do the testing. So when I went through it, the prices were almost exactly what you recommend!

    I do agree, the suggestions should be more detailed. But people need to understand the current criteria before making requests.

    Also agree (this is to JS and Lorilu), that a clinic should be aimed at educating the rider. Auditors are there to watch, but the main goal of a clinic is the rider's individual lesson. A Symposium is aimed at educating the audience - the rider is there to demonstrate the clinicians changes and excercises. So for a Symposium, you NEED a rider and horse that can make the corrections and do the exercises quickly and effectively, so the audience can see what the clinician is asking for. IN the case of a Symposium, the riders should be screened - and in my opinion, perhaps not charged much for their ride, since they are a demonstration rider more then a student.

    And of course, my original complaint - FB is not the forum for this group! They are leaving behind the vast majority of AA riders by using the forum they chose, and electing their "officers and reps" the way they chose.



  18. #58
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    I'm not involved wtih AADI, but personally, I like having it be on facebook. That way the input is coming from people under real names, so it's not the complaints of random anonymous people on the internet. I think the legitimacy of having real names makes it substantially more meaningful to organizations like USDF, and although some people are easy to identify on forums like this based on what's in their signature, that's not universally true and figuring out who is who on a mass scale would take way too much effort.

    Facebook is free and anybody can join, and it's not really any harder to sign up for than it is to sign up for a forum like this one. And if you don't like the rest of what goes on on facebook, you can always just sign up, keep your privacy settings very strict, and limit your facebook participation to just AADI activity. (Also, maybe it's a generational thing, but I feel like 95% of the horse people I know, across all ages, are already on facebook.)

    JMO.



  19. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by js View Post
    What good is it to riders if clinics are selecting riders based on what will provide the most for the audience? The point of a clinic for me at least is that I am paying to get a private lesson (if you will) with a BNT, so I can learn and get the education I'm seeking from a trainer at a level I don't ordinarly have access to. I'm not there for the education or entertainment of the audience. As an auditor, I'm there to just observe the rider who is getting instruction from the clinician. I am not there with any presumption that the clinic should be geared to me as an observer. I am there as a paying guest to watch and hopefully learn. I don't want answer/questions from the BNT. I think we have two very different views on what a clinic should be. FYI I am posting my thoughts on the AADI facebook page, for the little good it is doing.
    The point of the USDF Adult Clinics is to reach more than the 8 riders - the auditors. It is clearly stated in the application and description.
    I entirely agree with you regarding OTHER clinics, though.....



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