Western Dressage - Arabian Horse Assoc - Page 4 - The Horse Forum
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post #31 of 96 Old 07-07-2013, 08:21 AM
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: midwest
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I understand what you are saying. The idea of western jumping does sound a bit odd to me, but western dressage I'm not so sure about. Having ridden both western, basic English hunt seat, and dressage, I feel that western is far more like dressage than English hunt seat. Western riding promotes a longer leg, riding primarily off the seat, turning away from the outside rein, the sitting trot, etc. Hunt seat (used in most other English style riding) promotes none of these, while dressage promotes them all.

But then alas, we come down to costume and tack. Outwardly they look different but western snaffles are certainly common and if you say that non-chairseat western saddles are also readily available, then it comes down to cosmetics and I'm not convinced that should be the deciding factor. After all, authentic cowboys didn't dress as your western riders of today, nor did the original inventors of the word "dressage" dress like dressage riders of today. A person in a western style community is not often inclined to switch over to English attire, nor should they have to IMO, just to ride dressage.

The answer of course, is for we who value what dressage has to offer the horse and rider, but don't care for the attire, to all join the "Baroque Equestrian Games and Institute" (I have) and compete under it's wonderful rules which allow any and all styles of tack and attire, while focusing only on the improvement of the horse and rider. (Beside strictly dressage classes, the BEGI also offers the artistic expression of musical and custume classes, as well as "games".)
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Last edited by Myya; 07-07-2013 at 08:25 AM.
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post #32 of 96 Old 07-07-2013, 09:01 AM
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Aaargh! Those videos!

It grieves me to see people riding in Western tack and moving further and further away from a functional form of horsemanship.

At least this form of riding needs a new name. Something that indicates: Misuse of bit type and unnecessary saddle type.
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post #33 of 96 Old 07-07-2013, 09:18 AM
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I am now going to give my point on WD. Here in my area everyone thinks dressage is stupid. We have a lot of western riders that like western pleasure and trail. After hearing about WD a lot of them said, "Ha never thought that would happen" Any way a lot of them thought dressage was stupid, not important and a waste of time. Soon after their ideas on it changed not for WD but dressage in general. Its just something else for western riders to do, to open their minds to something new. I am all for it and plan on trying it my self.
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post #34 of 96 Old 07-07-2013, 10:46 AM
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: midwest
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Whatever is good for horses and the horse industry is fine with me.
To each his own.
Variety is the spice of life.

If we are going to be very narrow-minded about it, perhaps we should restrict all dressage to Spanish saddles and Spanish horses. All quarter horses would have to be restricted to the western look of course, all thoroughbreds to racing, and warmbloods to jumping. Perhaps ALL western horses should be condemned to the curb bit, whether they need it or not.

But I will tell you one reason I have for wanting to stick to my Klimke dressage saddle: comfort. At my age I need to avoid all the bruises and rub spots possible. I'd love to show in Western Dressage but I'll have to find a comfortable non-chairseat western saddle first.
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post #35 of 96 Old 07-07-2013, 11:00 AM
Join Date: Dec 2012
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IMHO, any horse that lopes on his forehand in a Western Pleasure class and any rider that wants to ride WP correctly is a candidate/target for dressage in a Western saddle.
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post #36 of 96 Old 07-07-2013, 11:41 AM
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Location: southern Arizona
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Why not just encourage them to ride better? There are millions of western horses who move just fine without dressage lessons. There is nothing wrong with 'western horses' learning dressage, or jumping, or polo. It is the mixing of different traditions, combined with marketing that strikes me as demeaning both traditions, that I object to with WD. I'd respect WD more if it was defined as a two-event sport, with a combination of barrel racing scores and dressage providing the final score. Or reining & dressage.
"The Western Dressage Association® of America (WDAA) was organized to provide western riders and horses with an educational program which incorporates the principles of lightness into a whole new way of thinking about riding western. Western Dressage helps a rider to improve the horse’s balance, cadence and carriage. Whether your horse competes in reining, roping, cutting, western pleasure, or enjoys the trail with you, using dressage will improve your partnership and keep your horse happier and more sound far longer than it would otherwise be...It is not the goal of Western Dressage to create western horses that compete in open dressage but to create better western horses and riders through the use and principles of dressage."

It seems the WD people think Western riding is about ham-fisted people riding unbalanced horses resulting in their breaking down and dying after an unhappy life - but WD is here to save western horses from western riding. Because, as we all know, western riders aren't light, or balanced. And our horses go lame early because we allow them to use their natural balance...
"dressage will improve your partnership and keep your horse happier and more sound far longer than it would otherwise be"
According to WD, if we don't use dressage, our horses will be unhappy and unsound...presumably because western riders suck. I don't know why anyone would take offense to marketing like that!
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post #37 of 96 Old 07-07-2013, 01:27 PM
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I dont see much in a dressage ring I would ever want my horse doing. Taht overly collected bounce in place stuff ? Yeh Ive seen a few of them come and try to do an actual trail ride. General Beauregard asked me, "what in tarnation is he doin ?", I told him "I dunno, seems like an awful lot of work to not get anywhere." Then Bo said, "Well maybe its that new "running man dance" I said, "could be, want some tequilla to take the edge off ?"..... Sure why not.
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post #38 of 96 Old 07-07-2013, 02:16 PM
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bsms... You can't take a quote, then claim the speaker is insisting the converse (eg. Dressage will improve a horse's soundness does not mean that a non-dressage horse will go unsound). Why look for conflict where there isn't any?
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post #39 of 96 Old 07-07-2013, 05:38 PM
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the quote says, it will keep the horse sound far longer than it would otherwise be.
That isnot taking the converse as you put it. They are specifically claiming your horse will at some time be unsound when it wouldnt be if you do dressage, Sounds like malarky to me.
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post #40 of 96 Old 07-07-2013, 06:15 PM
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Alberta, Canada
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I think people should do whatever they want, but I have a real issue with seeing shank bits that are parallel to the ground. Good horsemanship? I think not.

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