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Western Dressage

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  • #21
    Western Dressage is my first love too. I signed up for the WD Association. Actually, WD isn't that new, old timey cowhorses went in a WD-y way, with a spade. But I'm glad there is something out there. I don't know the interest in my neck of the woods, yet. There are some buckles shows coming up but I haven't checked the bill.

    I'm actively looking for a gelding and he will have to be able to go this way. Needless to say, it's kinda slim pickin's. That's another post....
    GR24's Musing #19 - Save the tatas!!

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    • #22
      This sport is picking up quite a following in the Houston area; don't know about the rest of the country...

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      • #23
        Originally posted by goneriding24 View Post
        Western Dressage is my first love too. I signed up for the WD Association. Actually, WD isn't that new, old timey cowhorses went in a WD-y way, with a spade.

        ..
        This is what I was thinking. If there is a traditional vaquero or buckaroo trainer in the OP's area, they might consider taking lessons and learning more about how they develop a bridle horse. In my opinion, these true bridle horses move more correctly and more like classical dressage than most of the competitve dressage you see today.

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        • #24
          Never having seen WD, it would be a shame if the slow, pokey gaits and low headset were required instead of more natural gaits and headset.

          Years ago I took a clinic with Roy Yates (a reiner) but his basics were dressage based in a loose sort of way.
          Proud member of People Who Hate to Kill Wildlife clique

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          • #25
            I do, I do!

            I show Western dressage. At present, it's mostly on the local level, with the exception of some national opportunities through the Morgan and Pinto clubs. Here in North Texas, lots of schooling shows have included Western dressage on their schedules, and my barn has been trying to take advantage of the opportunity to show our support. We have a variety of horses that show Western dressage: a Paint ex-jumper, some Quarter Horses, a straight Egyptian Arab, and a multiple Pinto World Champion Half-Arab. Right now, we're the only non-Morgans competing in our area that we know of, but we've generated a lot of interest and questions about Western Dressage everywhere we've gone. It's a blast (and you can't beat the clothes)!

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            • #26
              It hasn't quite caught on yet on the west coast. There was a dressage schooling show that offered western dressage and no takers. I'd be interested in trying it out but don't want to buy the blingy clothes and tack.
              Yogurt - If you're so cultured, how come I never see you at the opera? Steven Colbert

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              • #27
                It's also picking up steam in the OK area as well. I have seen a few classes offered at some of the schooling shows in Oklahoma. I'm not sure what the participation was like...but at least there is buzz about it.

                USDF's latest issue of the Connection (the association magazine) is devoted to explaining Western Dressage. USDF has been quite supportive of the discipline. I haven't been to their website lately, but I would recommend checking out the USDF site for more information. That would be my first place to start.

                I'm thinking about sending my Arab mare, who is quite talented, to a Western trainer to see how she would do in Western Dressage. I feel that it might be a great fit for her,
                Unashamed Member of the Dressage Arab Clique
                CRAYOLA POSSE= Thistle

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                • #28
                  I say go for it! You have nothing to lose.

                  Whenever I get a horse, I plan to try western dressage. In northern VA, some barns are having clinics.
                  We could all take a lesson from crayons some are sharp, some are beautiful, some have weird names, and all are different colors, but they still learn to live in the same box. Unknown.

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                  • #29
                    Originally posted by CA ASB View Post
                    For pics of us, here you go. And yes, I've bought all the photos, just haven't uploaded the purchased jpgs yet.

                    http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?s...c9d85d5&type=1
                    Was this at a show? If so, how did you score? I'm curious because the horses in the two western dressage classes I've seen had a much different way of going than I see in those pictures. The exhibitors were mostly reiners.
                    __________________________
                    "... if you think i'm MAD, today, of all days,
                    the best day in ten years,
                    you are SORELY MISTAKEN, MY LITTLE ANCHOVY."

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                    • #30
                      As for the clothes, you see all kinds. Personally, I like the working Western look, so I show in a plain saddle/bridle/breastcollar and wear a nice button-down shirt, jeans, chinks and a well-shaped hat. But I've also seen the typical show-clothes too. But please don't feel like you're expected to have a silver saddle/bridle and a $1,000 show top. :-)

                      And in regard to the judging, the beauty of dressage is that they judge your horse individually. My Paint isn't going to move or frame up the same way a Morgan or an Arab would ... you ride the horse you have. From what I've been told, they aren't looking for a Western pleasure-style horse, with super-slow gaits and a big draped rein. They still want correct, forward movements that follow the standard dressage training pyramid: rhythm, suppleness, contact, impulsion, straightness and collection. The scorecards look just like a regular dressage test and include most of the same principles.

                      If i could figure out how to post a picture, I'd attach one! Try this link. We've got several of our dressage (english and western ... dual-use in some cases) in this album. If it doesn't work, go to "Rose Gate Farm" on facebook and click the Jo-Mar Farms Dressage Schooling Show album.
                      http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?s...4347345&type=3

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                      • #31
                        I offered it last year at our schooling show. We had no takers. I am offering it again this year. We will drop it for the 2013 show if we don't get entrants this year. A GMO a little further south of me is offering it at their schooling show also.

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                        • #32
                          I want' so badly to get into it, alas my dressage type horse is gone, and while D-girl has the potential, it'll be a while...His Haffyness could do it, if I really convinced him he wanted to.

                          They started a 'group' here in VA holding WD fun days with lessons and practice time. I've yet to make it to one but everyone seems to be really enjoying it.

                          And all those photos shared...can I just say THANK YOU!! to all the riders using shanked bits one handed?!
                          Owned by a Paint/TB and an OTTB.
                          RIP Scoutin' For Trouble ~ 2011 at 10
                          RIP Tasha's Last Tango ~ 2010 at ~23
                          RIP In Sha' Allah ~ 2009 too young at 5

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                          • #33
                            Here are some videos of non-Morgans doing Western Dressage

                            http://youtu.be/Tx5MSlPLJAc
                            http://youtu.be/8oJpsjZq4vA
                            http://youtu.be/n0DaABRY1G4
                            http://youtu.be/iGFtCd0hObM

                            Western Dressage has a growing following in NC. Just as important as the shows, look for your state affiliate of the Western Dressage Association of America. They will be the source for clinics and educational opportunities. I'm giving a clinic in Winston Salem, NC in June. We announced the date yesterday and it's already over half filled. If you're in NC, SC or southern VA check out the Facebook page for Western Dressage Association of North Carolina. Our recognition is pending, but should be official by June.

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                            • #34
                              Originally posted by Foxtrot's View Post
                              There is something to be said about collection on a loose rein - don't let the dressage purists put you off - two different disciplines.
                              Ha-ha; ! Those "purists" don't even know they're comparing apples with oranges! Take a look at the REAL "Classical" dressage riding, in old prints and paintings from the time of La Guerinere. They've got an awful lot more in common with a California style "bridle horse" than with anything seen in modern-day dressage arenas!

                              The truth is that modern, competitive-style dressage is only about 150 years old, and evolved around the Germanic-bred cavalry mounts of the late 19th century. Because these horses also had to go X-C, the emphasis became more and more about extension, which became a "big-mover" contest that increasingly, and regrettably, is often decided in the breeding shed.

                              If you look up French Classical dressage, however, you'll find a way of riding & training not incompatible with Western riding at all; it's Old Home Week, self-carriage in collection.

                              Search "Nuno Oliveira," "Cadre Noir," "Saumur," "Jean-Claude Racinet" and "General Decarpentry."

                              No more "Pushme-Pullyu!"

                              Comment


                              • #35
                                Originally posted by SwampYankee View Post
                                Ha-ha; ! Those "purists" don't even know they're comparing apples with oranges! Take a look at the REAL "Classical" dressage riding, in old prints and paintings from the time of La Guerinere. They've got an awful lot more in common with a California style "bridle horse" than with anything seen in modern-day dressage arenas!

                                The truth is that modern, competitive-style dressage is only about 150 years old, and evolved around the Germanic-bred cavalry mounts of the late 19th century. Because these horses also had to go X-C, the emphasis became more and more about extension, which became a "big-mover" contest that increasingly, and regrettably, is often decided in the breeding shed.

                                If you look up French Classical dressage, however, you'll find a way of riding & training not incompatible with Western riding at all; it's Old Home Week, self-carriage in collection.

                                Search "Nuno Oliveira," "Cadre Noir," "Saumur," "Jean-Claude Racinet" and "General Decarpentry."

                                No more "Pushme-Pullyu!"
                                YUP!

                                But to be honest I highly doubt we will see any REAL "bridle horse" type riding in WD. I'm yet to see a video or photo of a Western Dressage ride straight up in the bridle, reins in the wind. Modern western riding (save for the very few California Reinsmens/Vaqueros left) has gone same way everything else has gone. Poorly broke horses, push-me pull-ya, draw reins, crank n spank, over bitted, under balanced ect ect. It you find it every where, english, western, dressage ect. The Dressage world could learn a TON from the Bridle Horse crowd, but good luck convincing the dressage crowd that they have anything to learn from TRUE western riding.

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                                • #36
                                  Originally posted by BabyGoose View Post
                                  If there is a traditional vaquero or buckaroo trainer in the OP's area, they might consider taking lessons and learning more about how they develop a bridle horse.
                                  OHOHOH! It just occurred to me that "buckaroo" is the same word as "vaquero", if you english-ize it.
                                  Join a new horse sim where you can train, show and breed dressage horses, jumpers and eventers! Fun and free with mature players.
                                  Join Horse Eden Eventing Today !

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                                  • #37
                                    Originally posted by danceronice View Post
                                    You might also want to stock up on adult beverages before doing so.


                                    "And I'm thinking you weren't burdened with an overabundance of schooling." - Capt Reynolds "Firefly"

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                                    • #38
                                      Originally posted by RougeEmpire View Post
                                      YUP!

                                      But to be honest I highly doubt we will see any REAL "bridle horse" type riding in WD. I'm yet to see a video or photo of a Western Dressage ride straight up in the bridle, reins in the wind. Modern western riding (save for the very few California Reinsmens/Vaqueros left) has gone same way everything else has gone. Poorly broke horses, push-me pull-ya, draw reins, crank n spank, over bitted, under balanced ect ect. It you find it every where, english, western, dressage ect. The Dressage world could learn a TON from the Bridle Horse crowd, but good luck convincing the dressage crowd that they have anything to learn from TRUE western riding.
                                      Did you ever look, really look at the drawings and pictures of old CA vaquero bridle horses?

                                      Most of them rode very stiff, u-necked horses, not exactly what today's western or for centuries what you may call dressage horses were supposed to be.

                                      While the old CA vaqueros had their own ways and some of those were good, the overall riding was not that good or precise, although the skills in what they appreciated were awesome.
                                      Then, they were a very local group, not many in other places rode like they did, for good or bad.

                                      Comment


                                      • #39
                                        History is an interesting thing. Without living examples to share knowledge, it gets twisted. Until the 1970s many horses shown western in many parts of the country were shown with a spade. Even here in the East. In 1971 I saw 8mm movies of Western Equitation classes in California. These were the classes to qualify for the AHSA finals. Every horse was ridden in a spade. Every horse carried itself in collection. I was freshly back from England where I have been immersed in dressage and I was in love at first sight. Ed Connell had just published Hackamore Reinsman and I read it as a dressage text.

                                        True the old drawings and pictures of vaqueros show horses with upside down necks. If you watch videos of ranch horses today you'll see the same thing. And right next to that bad example there can be another horse that is balanced and properly muscled. In a utilitarian world, not every horse gets the time it takes to do it right and not every cowboy is a master horseman.

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                                        • #40
                                          I was showing western during the 60s and 70's in California. The bits being used were not spade mouthpieces. They were usually roller ported, copper hooded bits with mouthpieces like the Mona Lisa, Salinas, and Frog and very fancy carved silver cheekpieces. They were used with romal reins. The equitation outfits were usually all one color and very elegant...not like the flash and trash of today's western rider.

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