The Eurobodalla Dressage Association’s competition at the Moruya Showground, last Saturday was well attended. While enjoyed by riders the event is also widely enjoyed by spectators who have an admiration for the horses and for control and partnership shown between rider and horse. The next competition is scheduled for Sunday, September 17th and spectators are welcome. Some tips on being a spectator and understanding what you are watching.
The term ‘dressage’ is derived from the French word “dresa”, which simply means training. So anyone with a reasonably well trained horse, that can be ridden in a walk and trot within a confined arena (60 metres by 20 metres), can ride a dressage test.
Now you need to understand the arena.
The arena is 60 metres by 20 metres and has twelve letters along the sides indicating where movements are to be performed and where changes of paces are to occur. Not shown are the letters which are on the Centre Line, being D, L, X, I, G. X” is in the middle and often where a competitor stops and salute at the beginning and end of your test. At one end will be the letter “A” which has the entry to the arena and the other end has the letter “C” which is where the judge will sit in his/her car with her penciller (writer),just outside the fence line,to judge the test. If a novice rider is concerned about remembering their test pattern they can have a caller. This person stands at either B or E just outside the arena and can call each movement. In addition to scoring the horse and rider for each segment of the dressage test, overall marks are also awarded for impulsion, regularity of paces and freedom of movement, responsiveness and willingness, balance and correct performance of the movements, rider position and correctness and effectiveness of aids
The next EDA competition will be held on Sunday, September 17. For more information visit http://eurobodalladressage.org/
Photos in the above slideshow by Jenny Andrews
Above: this video is Jenny Andrews riding a test, on a not so dressage type older stock horse she came home with last year. The horse had been left in a paddock for 3 years prior to Jenny taking him as a friend for her other horse.
This is the most basic dressage Test a competitor can ride, it is only walk and trot.