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.

Monday, July 18, 2011

King Oak always fun!

Thank you once again to the staff at King Oak Farm for creating a wonderful show! We always love the atmosphere and the personal attention! And...who can pass up the strawberry shortcake?
Big congratulations to Ariel and Evita who won the inter1 and in two times out at the Inter 1 level have gotten their qualifying scores for the finals in September GREAT JOB!!!
Ariel and Sax were 4 th in the PSG with a slightly tense but very well ridden test, so much fun to see someone executing proper pirouettes in the show ring, way to go Ariel!
Alexis had a wonderful outing but I worry too much about her legs and schooling her until she was relaxed and doing the test seemed too much for my old lady. She did some super work and always a pleasure to ride such a talent.
Glorious was a star! Although I still need to work to get the points higher, he did the test much more on his own and was absolutly a pleasure in a completely new atmosphere and difficult warm up situation! 7.4 over all, his points were dragged down by the mark on the walk 7 which will come up whe he has more confidence in the show atmosphere. I have not had such a wonderful horse to work with in such a long time, his attitude about new things is wonderful and he is beautiful and athletic as well.........lucky me!
We are getting so much response to the Adult Camp we are offering in August! I am so excited. The format will offer sooooooooooo much for the campers and the price to good to pass up. Just having a weekend to enjoy the Ashby Stock Farm will be worth the price! We will be teaching lessons, doing demonstrations and lectures and Linda Powers and friends will be feeding everyone as well.............hope to see you there!

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