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Discussion Starter #1
So I have been through a bit of a drama on another forums where I posted pictures of the horse that I am now leasing. They say that he is not suitable for dressage because he has lordosis or a sway back and that I would be laughed out of the arena. Now, he is completely sound and is not in pain when ridden. He is also an old schoolmaster and knows his stuff. I can only think that true dressage work can only help him (and any horse for that matter) and that no real dressage judge or competitor would laugh us out of the arena. Heck I doubt they would even notice his minor sway back until I took the saddle off.

So what are some other dressage rider's thoughts on dressage with horses with lordosis?

Here is the best picture I have of him on flat ground, and I think he doesn't even look this swayed in person.
 

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Well he is definatlt swayed that's for sure. I dont see a problem with him compeating if he is compleatly sound
 

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Go for it! I'm sure with some work he may be able to build SOME topline back aswell too. Have fun and good luck.
 

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Well in dressage the horses use alot of there back muscles, so if you start working him in dressage it would help build his muscle.
 

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Well I won't lie, people will probably laugh. But if it's what you want to do, and he enjoys it, then it shouldn't matter what people say.
 

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They may not laugh openly but there will be snickers and remarks. The best thing to do in that case is to show them how well he moves - that will quiet them down.

As everyone else suggested the training may do him some good but I would check with a vet first. Is it caused by age or illness?
 

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i think dressage is benefitial to any horse. some horses are better at it than others, but people making comments about your horse not being suitable for it is really rude.
 

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Well I won't lie, people will probably laugh. But if it's what you want to do, and he enjoys it, then it shouldn't matter what people say.

They probably will laugh.

Your biggest difficulty will be in getting him to get the hind quarters under himself to be effective. It may never truly happen but there is nothing wrong with you working at it anyways.

He just will be limited somewhat in what he can accomplish and how well he can do it.

I was laughed at because I was showing a 15.2hh half arab ( and I am 5' 9" ) that only cost me $250.00. When I got to GP they stopped.
 

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Well I don't think people will laugh at you, but you are definitely going to get very rude remarks and comments from fellow riders, especially in this discipline. I would be careful with the judging as well. The reality is, if a judge picks your horse out and decides that he/she does not agree with you guys competing with this technicallity, you won't place and might get talked to.

Having said that, if you are going to work with a vet and know for sure that the horse is not going to be in pain, discomfort and that dressage is not going to make the condition any worst, go for it.

At the end of the day, you are going to be likely building some muscle and hopefully topline which can only help this little beauty. I have seen a lot of horses with various medical or conformation issues that would make you question their rideablity alone and they have ended up(for the most part), kicking some butt in the show ring. As long as your ducks are all lined up in a row, what people say or think does not matter. Don't let that affect you.

Good Luck.
 

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Well, it's not his fault that whomever had control of him when he was early in age, was ridden too early and hard to create the sway back. Poor guy.

I am sure you can do Training Level Dressage just fine and I do not see you being laughed out of the arena at Glass-Ed shows or at Schooling Dressage Shows.

I am sure he "can do his stuff" being an old School Master, that isn't the question. The question is, "How well" can he do his stuff?

Being a sway back, he may be hindered from doing the movements that are required, in the way that the Judges expect the movements to be done. Yeah, sure, anyone can do a 20 meter circle, and anyone can move from trot into an upward transition into canter. Yep, anyone can go across the diagonal and walk on a loose rein - but the question is, how well can your fellow do these movements?

I am not sure exactly what the Judge looks for in Training Level tests, yeah the test is strait forward and the test offers hints about what the Judge wants, but what does the Judge reallllly look for with each indavidual horse and rider team?

I am sure softness, suppleness, bending, roundness, forward open movement, tracking up, not heavy on the forehand -

It isn't that you'll get laughed out of the arena because he is a sway back - it is, how well will he beable to do the movements required, conformationally?

If you want to do Dressage, go ahead and do Dressage. But I think you are all over the place with what exactly it is that you want to do. and what horse you want to do that with.

I would wait for Spyder or Anabel to answer your questions.
 

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They probably will laugh.

Your biggest difficulty will be in getting him to get the hind quarters under himself to be effective. It may never truly happen but there is nothing wrong with you working at it anyways.

He just will be limited somewhat in what he can accomplish and how well he can do it.

I was laughed at because I was showing a 15.2hh half arab ( and I am 5' 9" ) that only cost me $250.00. When I got to GP they stopped.
AH! I was going to say "ask Spyder"

Glad you posted!
 

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If they laugh, they are only showing tremendous ignorance.

While it may be a bit harder for him to perform some movements, dressage is more a judge of a horse's heart than breeding. I have seen less gifted horses with huge hearts outperform the fanciest moving warmbloods with no heart.

I know of a 26 year old GP horse with a much more swayed back than yours. She still does wonderful piaffe and passage.

Go for it. Let the ignorants snicker. Get back at them through good training and simply beat them!!
 

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While it may be a bit harder for him to perform some movements, dressage is more a judge of a horse's heart than breeding.
That sounds very altruistic but I can't believe that it's true. A dressage horse is scored on his movements and how well they are performed not the "try" that is in him.

That isn't to say that he would not benefit from the training. Although I do not nor have ever shown in Dressage, I do follow it and watch it whenever I can. The scores are always based on performance. You are correct in that breed has little to do with it.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
MIEventer -yep I have kind of been all over the place, I know what i want to do (dressage and jumping), its just been a matter of finding a horse! I decided after trying a bunch of "pretty" horses out that I really need an old dead head horse so I can work on me for a bit, and get my confidence back.


Major moves really well, collects and goes onto the bit, moves off of leg pressure and is pretty sensitive to seat aids. I know that our biggest challenge is going to be getting him to round, but how much of that do they really expect at training level? My QH gelding was terrible about that and we did decently at the one dressage show I took him to.

I know little of his history other than he has been used as a beginner lesson horse the last 5 years or so.

Oh, and I have no plans of taking him much past training level, just want to get my feet a little wet.
 

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If I had a school master i would compete him anyway! if he was sound of course. i bet a nice cosey sheep skin would cover it up for the most part, you can go into that dressage ring with a 'ha, my horse has a swayed back and were still better that you!' attitude :)
 

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That sounds very altruistic but I can't believe that it's true. A dressage horse is scored on his movements and how well they are performed not the "try" that is in him.
Their performance of a movement reflects in their DESIRE to do it. I have seen many horses who simply put more of themselves into their job. I have also seen many more gifted horses who do not have that desire. They hold too much in reserve. It shows loud and clear in their performance.

I'm surprised you don't think a horse who desires to please will not have this reflected in their overall performance.
 

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If the horse's condition does not affect his movement and ability to give and bend then there should not be any problems score-wise. However I have the same condition and I do suffer a bit from it. Not unbearable pain but I do have some problems and sence your horse cant talk to you, Im affraid you cant say without a shadow of a doubt that he is not in pain. Warm him up slowly. Lots of trot work(this builds back muscles) and lots of bending,flexing, sidepasses etc.
 

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I know that dressage judges are supposed to judge different than breed show judges but I have found some dressage judges who'd be better off judging a quarter horse show (not saying AQHA is bad, I show in it too xD). Some judges can be biased towards things like that which is unfortunate because not everyone can afford 18 hand European warmbloods. I say, if it's something you want to do and he is capiable of doing it, you should. You should get a riser pad and a very thick half pad to help fill in the "dip" and make it comfortable for him.
 

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haha this 'they will laugh' thing brings back GREAT memorys! my first horse was a little TB. the first time we went into the ring, you know what score we got? 40%.... how could you get lower then 40%???? but everyone in my barn kept me enjoying showing because we would all go out for dinner after and have a great time, they are like family :). the first year of me and my horse showing i was pretty much the laughing stock, and 'loser' of the shows, lol. i was actually really young, and i owe a lot to my mom and my trainer. they told me to keep going... you know what?> the next year we got first and second place throughout all the shows we went too! and we were at a higher level! haha

personally, i think one of the funniest things to do is prove everybody who laughs wrong, i dont think they would laugh at your horse, and i think you should show, and if they do laugh? well, you can be sure you have something they dont have... a horse you love, and a horse that means more to you then any show or ribbons.......OR, you could just take that person out back and give 'em the ol' one two.lol. but i would love to see pictures when you guys do show!!! your hrose is adorable!
 
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