Welcome to Western Dressage!

The latest buzzword is Western Dressage. For some of you, you may be scratchin' your heads thinking - well we've already been doing this for a long long time- after all, the word Dressage means "training".

You might be thinkin', the really effective Western horse trainers and riders teach the principles of rhythm, suppleness, straightness, impulsion and collection to their horses. Whether they are riding for the show ring in Reining or Western Pleasure, Trail or Western Riding; these are core principles.

So while for some of you Dressage training for the benefit of Western riding and training is not new; there are a lot of Western riders who think those ideas belong only to the English riding world of Dressage competition. And also, up until now, it was a method of training... not an organized Western discipline.

With the purpose to promote, educate and teach Dressage principles to Western riders, the U.S. based Western Dressage Association of America; http://westerndressageassociation.org/ has already developed, competitions, seminars and an active and enthusiastic membership as well as many affiliates including the Canadian affiliate, the Western Style Dressage Association of Canada.

For many Western riders the thought of competing in the traditional rail classes doesn't do it for them, but the challenge of working with your horse to a specific goal and exhibiting your horse through a pattern that tests your mental and physical partnership with the horse... this is a thrill for many!

The Dressage competitions are open to all breeds of Western horses and there are rules and guidelines for judging as well as specific Dressage patterns that are based on the classical tests used by English Dressage riders.

And whether you ever step into the competition ring to ride that test doesn't matter! By advancing your Western horses training, you are enhancing your enjoyment and safety, as-well-as your partnership with your horse... and that's a really good thing! Everybody loves a better ride!

Although Dressage is relatively new to Western Riding, the irony is that I have always taught these principles since my early riding years were English and Dressage. As a result the Western Riding lesson program here at Harmony Ranch has always worked with the classic principles of self-carriage, light hands and correctness. In the past we have worked on our own modified Dressage patterns as well.

So for all our Western Riders here at Harmony, formalizing the discipline of Western Dressage, together with the patterns and competitions, are a natural addition to our lesson program.

Return from Western Dressage to Home

New! Comments

Have your say about what you just read! Leave me a comment in the box below.

Recent Articles

  1. if a lazy horse is ridden more often will they become more forward?

    Jun 12, 18 09:30 PM

    at the yard i ride at they are loaning out one or two horses for the summer. i am considering asking if i could loan a skewbald gelding called mr. huggles.

    Read More

  2. Read Harmony Ridge testimonials from those who spent time on the ranch.

    Nov 03, 17 02:28 PM

    These are Harmony Ridge testimonials from students and other guests.

    Read More

  3. Special events are hosted at Harmony Ridge from time to time.

    Nov 03, 17 02:10 PM

    Don't miss the Harmony Ranch special events. Mark your calendars for some family fun time spent outdoors with the horses!

    Read More

  4. Learn all about horses from well seasoned experts on the subject.

    Nov 03, 17 02:07 PM

    Here you'll find your answers to all horse related questions. Come learn all about horses.

    Read More

  5. Boarding

    Sep 14, 16 10:39 AM

    I am new to horses however have a daughter who is very interested in getting a pony. She is much more knowledgeable than I am and has asked that I inquire

    Read More

  6. Harmony Ridge Provides Exquisite Facilities Just North of Toronto

    May 31, 16 10:40 AM

    Harmony Ridge is an incredible destination just north of Toronto. This multi discipline facility provides the finest lessons and horse care. Come see first hand why we have such an excellent reputatio…

    Read More