Dressage (a French term meaning "training") is a path and destination of competitive horse training, with competitions held at all levels from amateur to the Olympics. Its fundamental purpose is to develop, through standardized progressive training methods, a horse's natural athletic ability and willingness to perform, thereby maximizing its potential as a riding horse. At the peak of a dressage horse's gymnastic development, it can smoothly respond to a skilled rider's minimal aids by performing the requested movement while remaining relaxed and appearing effortless. Dressage is occasionally referred to as "Horse Ballet." Although the discipline has its roots in classical Greek horsemanship, mainly through the influence of Xenophon, dressage was first recognized as an important equestrian pursuit during the Renaissance in Western Europe. The great European riding masters of that period developed a sequential training system that has changed little since then and classical dressage is still considered the basis of trained modern dressage.

Early European aristocrats displayed their horses' training in equestrian pageants, but in modern dressage competition, successful training at the various levels is demonstrated through the performance of "tests," or prescribed series of movements within a standard arena. Judges evaluate each movement on the basis of an objective standard appropriate to the level of the test and assign each movement a score from zero to ten - zero being "not executed" and ten being "excellent." A score of nine (or "very good") is considered a particularly high mark, while a competitor achieving all sixes (or 60% overall) should be considering moving on to the next level.

Friday, April 30, 2010


Absolutly wonderful news! We have our first sponsor for our 2011 Leukemia Lymphoma party!!! Anita Fialkow of Bronxville, NY and Wellington, FL has pledged to sponsor the food for our Equestrian of the Year fundraising party in Feb. This is a fantastic gift and we are so appreciative that Anita has stepped up to make this generous donation! Please join Anita and the LLS team to make the 2011 Equestrian of the Year fundraising effort the most succesful to date. We need your help!! We still need sponsors for the bar and dessert! Please contact me if you are interested in helping, remember all your donations are tax excempt! Thank you! Nancy

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Our biggest fans!

Gold Coast Dressage

Ariel also did her PSG Freestyle with Evita for the first time this winter and they did great. Marlene Whitaker has prepared a beautiful freestyle for Ariel and it really shows off her beautiful Evita. Here she is preparing for the big test.

Gold Coast Dressage

Congratulations to Gail Gibb's Noah and his second and third place finishes at the show last weekend. Noah and Nancy competed at third level and Noah recieved 8's on his half passes and a 9! on his last centerline and halt. Good boy Noah!

Gold Coast Dressage

Congratulations to Ariel and Alyson Miller's Nirvana. They competed last weekend in training and first level and were second in both classes! This was Nirvana and Ariel's first outing together and Nirvana's first show in more than 8 months! They looked beautiful and did a great job!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Leukemia Lymphoma Society

Many of you know that I actively fundraise every year for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society and Mary Ann Grants Equestrian of the Year Competition. For those of you that don't know Ariel and I were named Equestrians of the year this past February! This has given me new momentum for next year and we need your help!! We are looking for a sponsor that will be willing to donate money that will go toward the costs of the party, so that even more of the entry donations will go directly to LLS. To begin around $15,000. So this could be one person, or 3 people with $5000 each or 5 people with $3000 each. We all know people affected by this terrible disease. The Leukemia Lymphoma Society is such a fantastic organization, helping people hands on with counseling, travel arrangements doctor and treatment help, as well as funding research.
We need all hands to help us with next years fundraising campaign and party in February. Lets show the Leukemia Lymphoma Society that Equestrians can make a difference!! So let me know if you are interested to be a volunteer, make donations or become a participant.
Thank you!!

Saturday, April 10, 2010


Yesterday was Pikksi Wish's first lesson! Pikksie Wish was purchased from Horses Unlimited as a weanling in 2007. She is by their stallion Pik L and out of a Wolkenstein 2 mare. She spent last winter with us and in Florida and then went to Nancy Sharpless beautiful farm in North Carolina to grow up on the hills. Last week she arrived back in Florida as a 3 year old! and we will begin to break her in. Yesterday April 9 was her first lesson and I am not sure she was a fan. She is still learning about the cross ties, but because she is shedding so much it is not hard for to figure out she needs to stand to get this nice brushing. The bridle was not as much fun for her, but she handled it. I do not think she loved the bit in her mouth but by the end of the lesson she was relaxing. We went to the arena for our first lunge and without some assistance this process was not going anywhere, so Raymundo helped to walk her around the lunging circle and they even did a couple of rounds of trot.
From this point of view she was looking very beautiful. She has very good hind legs and a very elastic gait. I am excited to see what she will grow into.

Thursday, April 8, 2010


Congratulations to Tiron and Matti Karni for the purchase of Domingo's Shadow! Good Luck and we look forward to seeing you in Florida next winter!

Friday, April 2, 2010

The Beginning

"Do not seek to follow in the footsteps of the wise. Seek what they sought." Basho