Dressage Today

Dressage Today October 2018

One of America's most popular equestrian disciplines -- Dressage Today features insights from the world's most respected trainers, riders, and judges. It also includes coverage of national and international dressage events, as well as articles on the care and management of dressage horses.

United States
Active Interest Media
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2 min.
strengths and weaknesses

Identifying the strengths and weaknesses in your career, your hobby, your relationships, etc. is a great skill to have. Each of these facets of life requires flexibility and the ability to assess what you’re good at, what you can do better and, sometimes, what you need assistance with. That last one can be a hard pill to swallow—especially if you have trouble asking for help and want to be able to do everything yourself. (I speak from experience.) But I have often found that once I admit that I’m not great at X, Y or Z, and I find someone who is, it makes my life so much easier. This month, Olympian Sue Blinks takes a look at this topic in “Creating Excellence” on p. 24. In this two-part series, Blinks…

1 min.
news from dt

Did you know that just by watching select Dressage Today Online (DTO) videos you can get USDF eLearning credits? Yup! DTO is part of the USDF eLearning program. For most of us this season, USDF Regional Championships are in October, thus I thought it would be nice to share one of my favorite USDF-credited series to help you not only get excited for your upcoming shows, but likewise fired up about your training in general. The series at is led by U.S. Olympian Steffen Peters and FEI “I” judge Janet Foy. It is quite comprehensive with 39 videos that review the importance of understanding the Training Scale, basic training and focuses on all tests Training through Grand Prix, including the Young Horse Tests. To watch this entire series and receive…

3 min.

News from The Dressage Foundation The Dressage Foundation (TDF) is pleased to announce the creation of a new grant fund that will provide financial assistance to para-dressage riders to attend educational events, such as clinics at the USEF/U.S. Para-Equestrian Association Para-Equestrian Centers of Excellence (COE). One goal of the fund is to reach grassroots and lower-level riders. “This para-equestrian dressage fund has been in the works for a long time so we’re especially excited to see it up and running soon,” said Beth Baumert, TDF president and CEO. “As the details develop, we hope that donors will find this as exciting as we do. As always, TDF tries to help people at the grassroots as well as at the top, and this fund will follow suit.” “USEF is extremely appreciative and excited about…

6 min.
bloodlines of top dressage horses

Cosmo 59 (Van Gogh X Lady by Landjonker) is an 11-year-old bay KWPN gelding campaigned by Germany’s Sönke Rothenberger. Family history has brought rider and horse together. Sönke is the middle child of Sven Rothenberger and Gonnelien Rothenberger-Gordijn, who both competed internationally. Together, they were part of the 1996 Dutch Olympic team that won silver in dressage. Sönke and his siblings, Sanneke and Semmieke, have grown up riding in Germany and are known for their natural, intuitive riding style and competitiveness in Young Rider and German Pony Championships. The branches of Cosmo’s family tree intertwine with Sönke’s: his sire, Van Gogh, was owned by Sönke’s grandfather and his dam, Lady, was owned by the family’s veterinarian, Stan Serrarens. Over the past several years, Sönke and Cosmo have been building a presence…

1 min.
linear scoring

Since the mid-90s, the KWPN studbook has utilized a system called linear scoring to evaluate young horses at the time of inspection. According to KWPN’s website, “Linear scoring means that each individual horse is compared with the average KWPN dressage or jumping horse on all relevant characteristics included in the breeding standard.” The linear score form lists various traits related to conformation, movement and jumping separately. For dressage horses, 28 separate traits are evaluated in relation to the average of the specific traits. For example, dressage horses are evaluated on trot in four different ways: length of stride (long, short), suppleness (elastic, stiff), impulsion (powerful, weak), balance (carrying, pushing). On the score form each trait is evaluated on its own line with nine checkboxes. By choosing a checkbox for each trait,…

4 min.
your horse’s tail health

The appearance of a horse’s tail, both at rest and during exercise, can tell us much about his general health and well-being. The tail should hang straight down and be carried in a relaxed manner. When viewed from behind, it should swing gently from side to side as the horse moves. The height of the tail carriage depends on an individual horse’s croup conformation and breed. For instance, a Morgan may naturally carry his tail higher than a Thoroughbred. There are many reasons that a horse might hold his tail crooked or off to one side. As an equine veterinarian certified in spinal manipulation (chiropractic), I am often called in to assess a horse for abnormal tail carriage. One such cause is when there is a restriction (loss of motion in…