Beginner level dressage

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Beginner level dressage

This is a discussion on Beginner level dressage within the Dressage forums, part of the English Riding category

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    10-09-2012, 03:09 PM
Super Moderator
Beginner level dressage

I was kind of wondering if I could maybe do a beginner level schooling type of dressage show with Riley. If something like that existed. He's not super flexible although we are doing a lot of exercises for it. I'm using a stage 3 Myler bit on him english and I'm not sure it would be considered legal for dressage:

Myler Ported Barrel Dee Bit With Hooks, Level 3 - Quality Tack at Outlet Prices - VTO Saddlery

I'm pretty sure I can use a regular snaffle on him in a show environment and get away with it though.

He leg yields and side passes fairly when but he would never be an upper level horse. I wouldn't want to waste my time or money going to a show that we absolutely did not belong in but if we could go to one and fit in, I'd like to maybe try it.

I have a bates saddle (not a dressage saddle), the tan paints and a blue coat. No dressage attire. I have a hunt cap and a certified helmet as well. I'm not even sure how I would go about attending a dressage event. You sign up in advance don't you? And they mail you your course? I haven't done one in over 20 years....

I added some pictures so you can see how he normally rides. We have actually been almost galloping him lately because we are working on forward motion. I will slow him down once we have real movement which is actually getting very close now. I included a picture of the bit but I don't think you can really tell from it....
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File Type: jpg rileyjuly4.jpg (34.0 KB, 279 views)
File Type: jpg riley-head.jpg (15.7 KB, 268 views)
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    10-09-2012, 03:58 PM
I only do low level dressage. I am certain you and Riley could do it, and enjoy it, too. The large D ring bit looks a bit odd in dressage. I might find a bit with a similar mouthpiece but either eggbutt or loose rings. Depends on whether or not he likes a loose ring type.
I find that horses that "lean" on a bit in a solid ring, will be much softer and carry their own head better on a loose ring. However, in some cases, the opposite is true; the horse becomes overly worried about the movement of the bit in his mouth in the loose ring style. Have you ever tried him in a loose ring?
My all time favorite bit is the KK ULtra loose ring. In every horse I have ever ridden it on, they all go better.

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    10-09-2012, 04:11 PM
Super Moderator
I think I may have some loose rings laying around the barn. I'll have to look around. I know I have a french link and some egg-butts. Probably an ordinary snaffle or two, a slow twist, and a thick wire....
    10-09-2012, 11:06 PM
Oh my yes By all means, please show that gorgeous horse in dressage!!

I second the KK Ultra - I loved it for my guys, and used the bradoon version in my double bridle rig.
    10-10-2012, 12:28 AM
You posted a nice picture of you on Riley, I think, in a western saddle and he had a nice "frame" there. In the "diversity of HOrse Forum" thread.
    10-10-2012, 01:06 AM
Super Moderator
D rings are OK, but not ones with the rein hooks. That one will have to go. The tan breeches and blue coat are fine. I would try to get a white shirt, if you can.

I think you could do fine at the entry level. The long and somewhat flat frame may get discounted a little, but so what? Have fun!
    10-10-2012, 09:35 AM
Super Moderator
I can round him some and raise his head up above the withers and still have him on the bit. Not like a "real" dressage horse but more closer to that look. I definitely wouldn't try anything above the entry level. I will go search through my bits. I'm pretty sure I have some w/out the rein hooks that I could use. I have sweet pea's old bit, it's just a double roller but it's on a d-ring I think, but a loose one.
    10-10-2012, 10:57 AM
D rings are fine in dressage but that one is not legal if you are showing because of the hooks and the ported mouthpiece (at least in the US). I love Myler bits and use them myself but try the MB01 or MB02. They come in loose ring, eggbutt and D ring. Roller's are not allowed as well.
    10-10-2012, 12:28 PM
Super Moderator
The bit thing is going to stress me out. Can I use a slow twist?
    10-10-2012, 12:57 PM
No. The bit rules are on the USEF website. Basically it must be a smooth snaffles with no more than 2 links, no port and ay least 14mm thick (or 12mm I can't remember off the top of my head). D rings are fine, so are Os, eggbutts, full checks and b rings.

Honestly at the lower level shows no one cares if you are in a blue jacket and tan breeches. I show in tan breeches a lot because they are easier to keep clean. As long ad the jacket is dark, it is within the rules and you will need an approved safety helmet. I would start out at training level if I were you.

Good luck!
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