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Western dressage??? Really???

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  • Originally posted by baylady7 View Post
    I think folks should watch the movie "Buck" and observe the fluid, responsive, graceful, up in the bridle work he does in the open field with his horse in western tack (including a shanked bit).
    Yes. He is a gifted trainer and a beautiful rider. But that level is not what the current western dressage tests are about. I hope they get there someday, but they aren't there now.

    The vast majority of folks in this country ride in western tack, to turn them away from trying to improve their riding and their horse's way of going is foolish.
    Absolutely. I don't care what they call it. As long as people are looking to improve their horses' carriage and gaits as well as their own riding, I say carry on.

    jog is very smooth and very very easy to sit
    Hence, my confusion as to why riders would be allowed to post it. You shouldn't need to. Really.
    __________________________
    "... if you think i'm MAD, today, of all days,
    the best day in ten years,
    you are SORELY MISTAKEN, MY LITTLE ANCHOVY."

    Comment


    • We are talking about 'intro' and 'training' level tests.
      Yes.
      Why is the need/allowance of a spade bit for such classes?
      There isn't any need for a spade. Those were curbs in the videos. Someone else mentioned a spade bit in regards to something else.
      We use double bridle with 'our' finished horses. Will we ever see a double bridle at 'intro' level? I hope not.
      I know that. I like to learn about any and all disciplines. I don't agree with only ever bothering to learn just one. We can all stick with our favorites...but as horsemen/women in general; a well rounded education including all aspects of equines will always enhance any rider.

      I rode western. Took lessons with a good reining trainer/judge. Never felt the need to use a spade bit on any of her horse. Ever. And I bet she would not allow a beginner rider, even on a 'finished' horse, to use one at 'intro' level.
      Probably because reining horses don't use spades. They use various curbs, dogbones, shanked snaffles, etc.
      Spade bits are used for some bridle horses. It takes an average of 5 and up to 7 years to train a horse to Bridle Horse. At that point some will go in a spade. (that's full time training) I'm not sure some folks on here know what a finished bridle horse is. It's equal to a GP dressage horse.
      And nobody would put any beginner on a GP any more than they would for a Bridle Horse.

      The problem is, Dressage is about contact. No looped rein.
      The problem with that is Dressage is about training. Not contact. Contact is used and necessary, but it's not what dressage is about.
      According to USDF:
      Dressage is a French term meaning “training” and its purpose is to develop the horse’s natural athletic ability and willingness to work making him calm, supple and attentive to his rider.
      I think an issue here is that some feel that any dressage needs to be done "their way" and anything else is just wrong or bad or somehow ruins their discipline of choice.

      Yet I don't think WD is trying to be competitive "regular" dressage, Classical dressage or anything else. It's an all new version with it's own set of rules. It will ruin dressage no more than hunters ruins jumpers. Or jumpers ruins cross country. Or western pleasure ruins ranch versatility. Or ASBs ruin TWHs ruin NSHs. There already are different types of dressage...classical vs competition vs haute ecole, etc. None are ruining the others. So this one doesn't have the contact you may be used to. Since you won't be judged against it...why does it bother you? It's a new way of doing things and to slam it just helps justify the elitist persona of some disciplines.


      Bethe...a spade is normally only used in what's called a "finished Bridle Horse" which does take YEARS to train and produce. And not all make it there. It's the same as a top level dressage competition horse. Only in Bridle Horses...rein contact is a *huge* no-no. As are weighted reins. Oddly enough a Bridle Horse is ridden with the bridle as more of a decoration, LOL!

      TX is indeed the QH capital. Funny thing is, I was never shopping for a QH. I got the first one solely as a companion for the KWPN mare. She was a real diva and had health issues by that time, so any horse she got along with was what I needed. She met Pete and adored him. I bought him. After she passed away I had Pete solo for 6 months and he was doing okay with that while I shopped for what *I* wanted. And of course once you start seriously shopping, you can't find squat. Pete started acting lonely, I felt bad and bought another horse ASAP to keep him company. Another QH...he was young, safe, sane, sound and cheap. We always joke that I keep ending up with horses I'd normally never buy. But I learned some dressage for the dressage mare and learned some western for Petey (ranch horse) and while Sonny was also a ranch trained horse, he's more versatile and I do a little of everything on him.

      Check out ranch versatility...that's wicked cool too. I also love the western extreme trail and anything to do with cows looks like fun. Over the years I've learned that while I love jumpers the best BY FAR I've also found out I *really* enjoy a lot of other stuff too. So my next horse that I actually pick out on purpose will have to be an all arounder type. I'd also love to try driving some time and I've never ridden anything gaited really. (don't want a gaited horse but might try lessons some day for fun) Vaulting is probably the one I'll never try. Looks deadly for someone as uncoordinated as I am!
      You jump in the saddle,
      Hold onto the bridle!
      Jump in the line!
      ...Belefonte

      Comment


      • Originally posted by alibi_18 View Post
        The problem is, Dressage is about contact. No looped rein.
        Really?

        "It's like a Russian nesting doll of train wrecks."--CaitlinandTheBay

        ...just settin' on the Group W bench.

        Comment


        • MistyBlue

          Thanks for your posts. Even though you don't consider yourself a western rider you get "it" and are a well rounded, open minded horsewoman. I used to think that riding working cowhorses was the ONLY way to go.....I'd have never imagined that at 43 I'd be gearing up for driving and showing miniature horses and possibly getting into CDEs but you have to think outside the box when life throws you a curve.

          The glass is always half full.....

          Comment


          • My problem is not with western people doing dressage. My problem is western dressage being judged differently than the USDF dressage tests that happen in the same show.

            Now, I have noting against crossing disciplines. I've done it, and I've been pretty successful at it.

            But when I take my dressage horse to an open show, I know he'll be penalized in western pleasure/HUS because he moves like a dressage horse. At the same time, we sweep up in the pattern classes because he's a dressage horse. Of course, we wouldn't dare play in the AQHA sandbox... because he's a dressage horse... and I know that they are looking for different movement than we practice.

            I dislike the western dressage classes because of the hugely inflated scores. If my horse had put in a WD test like the one I saw at my last schooling show in his english gear, we would have been slaughtered (and rightfully so) for a lack of connection and not being through. Because that horse was in western gear they earned an 80%.

            Have you guys ever seen an 80% ride at the lower levels? I think that an 80%, no matter the level or the tack, should leave the audience wowed.

            So, my meandering point to this is that, sure we should welcome western riders to dressage with open arms... as long as they expect to play by the same rules.

            Comment


            • The fact that this relatively young movement is NOT starting in the breed shows is a HUGE improvement over the way hunt seat & saddle seat started in the western breeds. For those of you who haven't been around that long, consider a hunter class (someone read that the fences should be 3' or 3'6", so they were) where the fences were single rails (sometimes the poles from pole-bending) often balanced on the top of a barrel. The judges were ignorant (and I mean that in the actual definition of the word, NOT in a derogatory sense) of how a hunter was supposed to go, so getting over the fence was considered the highest art form.

              For years, even AFTER the various associations realized that the judges needed some education in this newfangled, citified, sissified way of riding, many had no clue. At one double-pointed show (each class judged separately by two judges), I won Amateur HS Eq class under one and got the gate under the other. After the show, the one who placed me on top & I were talking (I'd seen her be crowned National Appaloosa Queen at the first Ap Nationals I'd attended decades before), and the other judge walked by. She grabbed his arm, and said, "This is the woman you need to apologize to." She then looked at me and said, "I couldn't believe that he hadn't pinned you. I asked him why he hadn't and he said because you weren't posting correctly without stirrups. I told HIM that you were the only one in the class doing it correctly, and he needed to learn more about the discipline." Poor man - he sort of hung his head and did, sincerely, apologize.

              And I can't tell you how many Ap Saddle Seat classes were won by WP horses in funny clothes, RACING around at a trot and doing an itsy-bitsy canter.

              So hats off to the brave folks feeling the waters of WD. They're going to the source to ask, "How's this? Are we on the right track?" And the judge worthy of the title will go out of his/her way to make appropriate, constructive comments to help them along.

              Carol
              www.ayliprod.com
              Equine Photography in the Northeast

              Comment


              • No. Dressage is not about contact. Dressage is about producing a good horse which uses his body in an efficient manner. Contact is an effective tool to achieve that goal.

                And NOMIOMI1, based on your posts, it is rather obvious that you are not only lacking basic knowledge, but lacking the ability to learn what you don't know. You know, it is better to be thought as a fool, than to remove all doubts. I'm not sure who you are trying to mock in such a distasteful manners: the "open minded" riders who don't want to do real dressage.

                Since you are too ignorant to know the "real dressage", or the "real Morgan world", I will tell you a bit more about myself: I do not ride Western Dressage, I compete in Open Rated Dressage shows, I ride with FEI trainers who have trained multiple horses and riders to FEI, and I have on my pony beat fancy warm bloods at their open dressage shows, who are no doubt in real dressage world. In Morgan world, I have won multi-world titles, I have known and be friends with many riders who have won multi-world titles, and I have known and be friends with top trainers and breeders in Morgan world. What have you done?

                Comment


                • I spent about 20 years doing western/hus for AQHA/APHA/Aphc/AHA and some of that time in reining. I worked with top trainers as well as international ones in reining and cattle work. I touched on some cow events but those people are a lot braver than I am even though I have schooled not one but two working horses of the year (one as recent as last year). In 2009 I was nationally ranked 4th in one of my divisions.

                  I helped train an AQ WP point earner as recent as last winter so I know what I am talking about when I say that I dont feel all of the dressage love you do when you want the training tied to one another.

                  I dont like mixing my ice cream with my fried chicken either.

                  Call me silly
                  ~~Member of the TB's Rule Clique ~~
                  http://www.off-breed-dressage.blogspot.com/

                  Comment


                  • My problem is not with western people doing dressage. My problem is western dressage being judged differently than the USDF dressage tests that happen in the same show.
                    But it is different...so of course it's going to be judged differently. Western horses, in general, are not ridden with contact in the reins.

                    I can go to one show and show over fences. In the next ring they're also showing over fences. We're BOTH jumping...I ride jumpers and they're riding hunters. Both jumping, done differently so judged differently. I don't expect to be judged like a hunter and a hunter wouldn't want to be timed and judged like me. Yet we're both at the same show.

                    Heck, eventing dressage and competition dressage are judged differently. You certainly wouldn't want your scores to be as low as possible, right? Yet both are dressage.

                    Is it that you'll be on the same showgrounds at the same time that's bothering you? Or that the way they're scored produces higher scores at lower levels than what you do? Neither reason sounds reasonable IMO. Nobody is going to say, "Well the one in the western saddle doing into scored higher than you in your dressage saddle doing 3rd." They're simply not comparable. Just like nobody says to the eventer, "Well you must stink because you got such a low score and we're both riding dressage."

                    So they're on the same grounds at the same time and both have dressage in the name. It's not a big deal. I don't think they're trying to oust anyone or show anyone up. It's just a new way of doing something.

                    It's just dressage...it's a discipline no better or worse than any other one. It's not the holy grail where it's blasphemous to ride or judge it differently if you change the tack.
                    You jump in the saddle,
                    Hold onto the bridle!
                    Jump in the line!
                    ...Belefonte

                    Comment


                    • Originally posted by amm2cd View Post
                      My problem is not with western people doing dressage. My problem is western dressage being judged differently than the USDF dressage tests that happen in the same show.
                      You know, I think this is the biggest concern for all dressage enthusiasts, and probably a confusion to many Western riders. I myself have problem with that but I'm not in a position to make any difference there. At least so far, as far as I know, there is a clear message that western dressage is not and should not be western pleasure on patterns, which is a big step up forward toward the principle of dressage. And I'm hoping that when they finally figure out more higher levels stuff, where greater amount of impulsion is not only nice to have, but needed, it will be trickled down that they have to encourage lower level horses to develop impulsion in addition to submission, or they will never make it to higher levels.

                      Comment


                      • Originally posted by Gloria View Post

                        And NOMIOMI1, based on your posts, it is rather obvious that you are not only lacking basic knowledge, but lacking the ability to learn what you don't know. You know, it is better to be thought as a fool, than to remove all doubts. I'm not sure who you are trying to mock in such a distasteful manners: the "open minded" riders who don't want to do real dressage.

                        Since you are too ignorant to know the "real dressage", or the "real Morgan world", I will tell you a bit more about myself: I do not ride Western Dressage, I compete in Open Rated Dressage shows, I ride with FEI trainers who have trained multiple horses and riders to FEI, and I have on my pony beat fancy warm bloods at their open dressage shows, who are no doubt in real dressage world. In Morgan world, I have won multi-world titles, I have known and be friends with many riders who have won multi-world titles, and I have known and be friends with top trainers and breeders in Morgan world. What have you done?
                        Well you could always look at her blog to get an idea of her riding and if it matches up with the "dressage expertise" she's always writing about...
                        "A horse's face always conveys clearly whether it is loved by its owner or simply used." - Anja Beran

                        Comment


                        • Originally posted by Pocket Pony View Post
                          Well you could always look at her blog to get an idea of her riding and if it matches up with the "dressage expertise" she's always writing about...
                          I never said an expert but I did say WP is not dressage and having plenty of experience to be able to say such I think.

                          Its nice to know that the conversation turns nasty when you say "Yes I know enough about this subject".
                          ~~Member of the TB's Rule Clique ~~
                          http://www.off-breed-dressage.blogspot.com/

                          Comment


                          • Originally posted by NOMIOMI1 View Post
                            I spent about 20 years doing western/hus for AQHA/APHA/Aphc/AHA and some of that time in reining. I worked with top trainers as well as international ones in reining and cattle work. I touched on some cow events but those people are a lot braver than I am even though I have schooled not one but two working horses of the year (one as recent as last year). In 2009 I was nationally ranked 4th in one of my divisions.

                            I helped train an AQ WP point earner as recent as last winter so I know what I am talking about when I say that I dont feel all of the dressage love you do when you want the training tied to one another.

                            I dont like mixing my ice cream with my fried chicken either.

                            Call me silly
                            What I don't see in your long list of accomplishments is anything relating to Morgan, or dressage, so do spare us since you obviously don't know either subject.

                            So No, you do NOT know what you are talking about, not the subject at hand anyway.

                            When people talk about subjects I have no ideas of, such as cow working horses, or team penning, or cutting, or racing, I shut up and listen. I don't try to pretend I know something that I don't.

                            Comment


                            • Originally posted by Ghazzu View Post
                              Really?

                              Looks like a single looped rein attached to a rather long curb shank...
                              Team Ginger

                              Comment


                              • If it's not about contact then why does the training pyramid have contact as the 3rd step up it? I'm not against wd but I am against someone not getting the info correct and the training pyramid does tell you contact.
                                Horses aren't our whole life, but makes our life whole

                                Comment


                                • Oh I dunno about that

                                  I have been lucky enough to work with some great people when I made the switch to dressage.

                                  Lucky enough to ride horses all the way up through GP and school upper level movements.

                                  I am not a genius but I can feel a slight slight difference in tempi's vs pattern changes LMAO

                                  Just slight ya know

                                  I too could be rude and point out that your own accomplishments hold nothing of western style either. So I guess youre in my boat anyway LOL
                                  ~~Member of the TB's Rule Clique ~~
                                  http://www.off-breed-dressage.blogspot.com/

                                  Comment


                                  • Originally posted by NOMIOMI1 View Post
                                    I never said an expert but I did say WP is not dressage and having plenty of experience to be able to say such I think.

                                    Its nice to know that the conversation turns nasty when you say "Yes I know enough about this subject".
                                    But of course we're not discussing Western Pleasure, we're discussing Western Dressage. Two different skills with different expectations and criteria.

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

                                    Comment


                                    • Originally posted by NErider View Post
                                      Looks like a single looped rein attached to a rather long curb shank...
                                      Indeed.
                                      "It's like a Russian nesting doll of train wrecks."--CaitlinandTheBay

                                      ...just settin' on the Group W bench.

                                      Comment


                                      • I think the conversation turns nasty because you have put these riders down and then to look at your own riding on your blog you are far from perfect. The horses also are far from it. Not saying I'm great. I know I need work and I ask for critiques on here even and put myself through it to get better. I can offer advise to help others but I don't put every western rider in a clump of crappy riders that know nothing and you are much better then them mindset. Let's ask for a critique of your riding and see what happens. This is life no one is perfect and if they want to try something different so be it. Also, was it you talking about the bump bump bump in the warm up ring?

                                        This is like the never ending train wrecks in hunterland. Some fox hunters have issues with hunters being called hunters. Yes it came from fox hunting but has developed into it's on sport. What's so wrong if the basics are dressage in wd and becomes it's own sport? No a true fox hunter isn't a true hunter in the ring but it's different just like this will end up being.
                                        Horses aren't our whole life, but makes our life whole

                                        Comment


                                        • So I've been so hooked by this discussion that I've been obsessively scouring the internet for everything I can find on WD. I found this video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Fv9W...eature=related

                                          Freestyle -the first 1 minute 23 sec. I loved the heck out of it.

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

                                          Comment

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