Read HDS Newsletter_April 2009 text version

A Publication of Houston Dressage Society

April 2009




Freestyle Farm Frostbite Show

By Syrisse Longbottom & Christy Raisbeck


Karen Robinson Freestyle Lecture

By Syrisse Longbottom

P 20 Birth of a Freestyle

By Syrisse Longbottom & Barbara Stewart

P 24

Sport Psychology: Performance Anxiety

By Seana Adamson, PhD

P 32

By Syrisse Longbottom and Christy Raisbeck KATY, TX Just as spring rolls around each year, so does the Freestyle Farm Frostbite Dressage Show, managed by Christy Raisbeck, owner of Freestyle Farm. This annual event, now in its Q: Hi, Christy! Are you rested up from the 11th year, was held March 78, 2009 at the show?? Great Southwest Equestrian Center in Katy, Texas. Judges for the show were Sandra Hotz A: Hmm, not really. I still seem to fall asleep every time I sit down... ("S") from Colorado, Beverly Rogers ("S") of Ari zona, and Joan Darnell ("R") from Texas. Q: Hey, could I get some scoop from you about the show to go with the photos? Open High Point Winner and overall Training Level Champion was Sandra Adair on her lovely A: Okay, but if you have a photo of me from young Dutch warmblood mare, Zandra ISF that weekend, don't use it! I saw how I (Contango). Their high score was 72.609% for looked in the mirror now and then, and it Training Level Test 1. Gon Stevens, riding the wasn't pretty. Ugh. G e r m a n (Continued on page 14) Riding Pony Farewell B, won the Adult Ama teur High Point Award with a score of 68.684% for their First Level Test 4, and was also the overall First Level Cham p i o n . Hayley Lin ton and Coppertone won the Junior High Point Award with a Lurena BellStanley on Passadena, FEI Champions at Frostbite 68.696% on

Training Level Test 1. Elizabeth Fletcher won the Zella Rowland Memorial Highpoint Freestyle Trophy with a score of 71.458% on Roja. A com plete list of champions can be found in the photo montage. The following is an email exchange with Christy after her show that offers some insight into the `science' behind outsmarting Mother Nature.

Photo by Karen Roepke


Greetings! It is really hard to believe that the year is onefourth over and we are in the full swing of the spring show season. We are so close to the spring show and the planning is underway. We are happy to report that we are close to 200 entries, which is slightly larger than the previous year. Please give us your feedback and let us know what you think about our first threeday show for a nonchampionship. This show will require a large number of volunteers to make it a success. Please consider giving of your time and talent to help all of the competitors achieve their goals. If you can, please contact Jane Holman at [email protected] Thanks! I want to thank Susan Shiba and especially Sandra Adair for organizing the Karen Robinson Freestyle seminar at the Pin Oak Horse Show. Many thanks to all of those HDS members that also attended. I look forward to your feedback and ideas to make this club successful. Kathy Jones HDS President

Auditors enjoying the beautiful weather and Freestyle Riding Clinic

Karla WestDee on Enchanted Love Affair at the Karen Robinson Freestyle Clinic

Photos by Syrisse Longbottom

Collective Remarks is a monthly publication of Houston Dressage Society, Inc., a nonprofit taxexempt corporation.

Editor Syrisse Longbottom [email protected] 9363723367 Submissions Submissions from all HDS members are encouraged.


Advertising Submit classified ads in plain text or Word format and in final form. Display ads must be high resolution (300+dpi) in electronic format. Submit ads via email to [email protected] Deadline is 15th of the month prior to the month of publication.


For the complete calendar, go to Quick Links on p. 35 Date Clinician / Event Christine Traurig Location Rose Ridge Sport Horses at Honeybrook Farm, Tomball North TX Equestrian Center, Wylie, TX Rosehill Ranch, Tomball, TX D&S Ranch, Bellville, TX General Info Slots available audi tors welcome Dressage & jump lessons, rider dead line 3/18 Auditors welcome Contact Info Darcy Buell 4359621380 [email protected] Rachel Campbell [email protected] Annie McChesney 2814338208 [email protected] Suzan Saylor 9798650103

April 2009



Reitmeister KarlHeinz Streng Pati Pierucci Charles deKunffy

1819 2122

May 2009

23 David Blake Stillmeadow Dressage, Dou ble Dime Ranch, Carrizo Springs, TX Clinic $300 (2 private lessons). Optional stabling and accom modations pkg $300. Auditors $30/day Auditors $35/day or $50/weekend Lynne Jones [email protected] 8303749774


Walter Zettl

Silver Oaks Farm, Kerrville, TX

Cindy Dix Weathersbee [email protected] 8307923414

October 2009

31Nov 3 Houston location--TBD Dressage Biomechan ics Clinic Virginia Ellis 7136940694


Bored, bored, bored. Oh, look! What's in here?

Donna Meyer's Elisa's Star at the Freestyle Riding Clinic

Houston Dressage Society is a USDF Group Member Organization (GMO) and all members are automatically USDF Group Members (GMs). For Participating Membership, members must apply directly to USDF.

Change of Email Address Nancy WalkerTaylor [email protected] 8326033835 Or Syrisse Longbottom [email protected] 9363723367



Date Show April 2009 4 Hearthstone Riding Stables Info Location Houston, TX Judge Leslie Cummings Contact Show Mgr: Rebekah Wesatzke Show Secy: Jerry Lyons 2813981665 [email protected] Show Mgr: Trina Shukar Show Secy: Cindy Westheimer 7135151261 Tammie Haynes, Show Mgr [email protected] Kim Hoblit, Show Mgr 2817568461 Jeff Hoblit, Show Secy [email protected] Ginni Cifelli 9796906788 [email protected] Cal Eller, Show Mgr 2817234009 Laura Eller, Show Secy 2817787433 [email protected] [email protected] Ginni Cifelli 9796906788 [email protected] Christy Raisbeck, Show Mgr/Secy [email protected] Tammie Haynes, Show Mgr [email protected] Show Mgr/Secy Marie Morgan [email protected] 7134359817 Show Mgr: Rebekah Wesatzke Show Secy: Jerry Lyons 2813981665 [email protected] Show Mgr: Janet Manley 5123081961 [email protected] Show Secy: Amanda Wilson [email protected] Ginni Cifelli 9796906788 [email protected] 4 All Heart Horse Farm GAG, Intro A&B, Training 1 & 2, Prix Caprilli Manvel, TX Marie Morgan


Spring Stable Schooling Show Spring Series 2

Spring, TX

Leslie Cummings


Grand Oaks Equestrian Center GAG, TR2nd, 3rd4th Manvel, TX Schooling Show on request BACH Spring Dressage School ing Show Sienna Stables Schooling Show 50% off on stalls for HDS members!

Diane Rochau

11 19

College Sta Brenda McCall tion, TX Missouri City, Pam Grace TX

May 2009 2 Topsider Farm Spring Dressage 3 2 Freestyle Farm Schooling Show

College Sta tion, TX Fulshear, TX

Leslie Cummings Leslie Cummings


Spring Stable Schooling Show Spring Series 3

Spring, TX

Julie Berry

10 16

Solstice Farms Schooling Show $500 min. Jackpot Mother's Day Out Training Test 3 Hearthstone Riding Stables

Houston, TX Houston, TX

Grace Harris Leslie Cummings


Hycourt Farm

Intro, Training, Prix Caprilli, 1st--4th

Bastrop, TX

Brenda McCall


Region 9 NAJYRC Benefit Schooling Show

Net Class fees & Topsider Grace Harris revenues will be do Farm, College nated to Reg 9 JR/YR Station, TX

June 2009 7 Sienna Stables Schooling Show 50% off on stalls for Missouri City, Donna Meyer HDS members! TX


All Heart Horse Farm

Manvel, TX

Brenda McCall

Cal Eller, Show Mgr 2817234009 Laura Eller, Show Secy 2817787433 [email protected] [email protected] Show Mgr: Scott Berger 7135151261 Christy Raisbeck, Show Mgr/Secy [email protected]

July 2009 12 Freestyle Farm Schooling Show Fulshear, TX Sue Saylor





Date Show April 2009 35 Texas Dressage Classic I & II 45 2426 Fort Worth Spring Fling I & II HDS Spring Classic I & Breed Show, and Spring Classic II Info O--2/1 C--3/12 O--3/1 C--3/31 O--2/23 C--3/23 Location Judge Contact Texas Rose Sonja Vracko, Barbara Horse Park, Ebner, Kristi Wysocki Tyler, TX Glen Rose, TX Mary Grace Davidson; Susan Peacock Natalie Lamping GSWEC, Gary Rockwell (FEI Marilyn Kulifay Katy, TX "O"); Lorraine Mac [email protected] Donald (FEI "I"); Sarah Geikie (FEI "C"); Ulrich Schmitz ("S" & "r" DSHB) Austin, TX Susan Howard 5122880767, 5124234424 Michelann Tachibana 4696283754 [email protected] 5048328074 [email protected] Sherri Re 2815135745 [email protected] Marilyn Kulifay [email protected]

May 2009 23 Dressage at Silver Hill I & II O--3/6 C--4/3 O--3/16 C--4/11 Dressage thru 2nd Level O--4/13 C--5/11

910 2324 2324 June 2009 1314 1314 July 2009 1819

Dallas Dressage Club Spring I & II Dressage Across the Lake Spindletop Arabian Horse Show HDS Summer Shows I & II

Las Colinas, Irving, TX Folsom, LA

Reg 9 Youth Team Champs Kem Barbosa, Sue Casey GSWEC, Katy, Betty Thorpe TX GSWEC, Katy, TX Austin, TX TBA

CTDS Bluebonnet Classic I & II O--4/14 C--5/22 Windy Knoll Farm Summer Dressage I & II Dallas Dressage Club Lemon ade Daze I & II Serenity Farm Summer Dres sage Show I Dog Day Dressage Show O--5/11 C--6/17 O--6/1 C--6/27 O--6/18 C--7/13

Bill Solyntjes; Doreen Jan Colley 5124153039 Horsey [email protected] Fran Dearing 2813562883; 7137039344 [email protected] Michelann Tachibana 4696283754 [email protected] Vicki Macgowan 9857960317 9853735464 [email protected] Albert Pugh [email protected]

2526 2526

Windy Knoll Kem Barbosa, Kathy Farm, Magno Rowse lia, TX Las Colinas, Irving, TX Serenity Farm, Robin Brueckmann Folsom, LA Orange, TX San Antonio Rose Palace, TX Lone Star Expo, Conroe Las Colinas, Irving, TX College Sta tion, TX Windy Knoll Farm, Magno lia, TX Texas Rose Horse Park, Tyler

August 2009 2223 2930

San Antonio Fall Dressage I & II

Natalie Lamping, Dinah Jan Colley 5124153039 Babcock, David [email protected] Schmutz Tom Poulin, Sandi Chohany Betsy Gosling Sonja Vracko, TBD Marilyn Kulifay [email protected] Michelann Tachibana 4696283754 [email protected] Ginni Cifelli 9796906788 [email protected] Fran Dearing 2813562883; 7137039344 [email protected]

September 2009 56 1213 13 1920 HDS Laborious Day Shows I & II O--7/6 C--8/3 Dallas Dressage Club Yellow O--7/20 Rose I & II C--8/15 Topsider Farm Dressage Show O--8/5 II C--8/26 Windy Knoll Farm Fall Dressage O--7/20 I & II C--8/18 Texas Dressage Classic Fall I & II


APRIL 2009


March 17 - April 12, 2009

Sam Houston Race Park Houston, Texas


Artania is a Cirque Du Soleil style show featuring the legendary Kantemirov Family Cossack Warriors, breath-taking horsemanship and acrobatic artistry with a cast of 55 aerial artists and acrobats and 19 equine athletes including some exotic breeds such as Akhal Teke, Russian Draft, Orlov Trotter and Tersk. The event will be held at the Sam Houston Raceway Park on Beltway 8. The producers erect a big ol' fancy climatecontrolled performance tent in the parking lot!


By special arrangement, HDS members and friends can purchase tickets to any show on Friday, Saturday or Sunday at a 20% discount. And, here's the extra cool part, HDS will receive a cash premium for every ticket sold! So tell everyone you know ­ the more tickets we sell through our passcode, the more money HDS receives. Go to and click on the Enter Artania Promo Code link. Then enter our pass code ­ carrots. Choose your performance date, your price level, etc. And remember that HDS earns money for every ticket sold through our passcode.

Tell all your friends, stablemates, hunter/jumpers, everyone!!!



Please email names of the biggest local publications for horses/ dressage in your area. Also any tack shops, or other equine busi nesses that could be contacted regarding sponsorship or involve ment in the USDF Convention in Austin, TX in December 2009. We are also looking for sponsors to help with a Welcome Party and meeting breaks. Open to ideas on how to make this convention the best ever !!!!


Nominations are being accepted for Participating Member Dele gates until April 15, 2009. Nominations for USDF President, USDF Treasurer, are also being accepted until June 1, 2009. USDF President, Treasurer nomina tions will also be accepted from the floor of the Board of Gover nors meeting at the annual convention in Austin, Texas. Nomina tions questions contact: Kat Kyle Region 9 Nominations Coordi nator: [email protected] USDF POLICIES, PROCEDURES & BYLAWS Updated USDF Policies and Procedures are now available on the USDF Web site. The 2009 updated USDF Bylaws document and the Regional Di rectors Timeline have now been posted at index.asp under "Other Important Links". USEF DRESSAGE COMMITTEE MEMBERS Each of the following members will serve a fouryear term begin ning in March 2009. Sam Barish Hilary Clayton Lisa Gorretta Lendon Gray Hilda Gurney Veronica Holt Sandy Howard Marianne Ludwig Janine Malone George Williams Lois Yukins Michael Barisone Carol Lavell Guenter Seidel Lisa Wilcox Jayne Ayers Janet Foy Lloyd Landkamer Axel Steiner Scott Hassler


We are very excited !!!! The new website is up and running. Please take a look and let us know what you think! We have added some new features...with more to come in the fu ture.


A payment toward the pledge for the bench was made to USDF National Educational Center on Feb 18th. If all of the pledges come in there is only $1797 left to achieve our goal. Thanks for considering your tax deductible donations. USDF will send a re ceipt. And thanks for the shows that would like to donate the proceeds from a class. Send checks payable to "Region 9 Bench Fund". Bess Reineman 3797 FM 2915 Lovelady, TX 75851 REGION 9 SUMMER MEETING AUGUST 1516, 2009

The 2009 Region 9 Summer Meeting will be at the Spring Hill Suites Marriott in Grapevine, TX (outside of Dallas). 2240 W Grapevine Mills Circle Grapevine, TX 76051 Ph #: 9727245500 Rooms: $109 per night. More detailed information at a later date. Questions? Contact Bess Reineman [email protected]


Please be reminded that horses earning a score of 77 percent or better in a Great American/USDFBC qualifying class will be eligi ble to compete in the Great American/USDFBC series final event. Please refer to the USDFBC rules for additional information.


The Renee Isler Dressage Support Fund provides up to nine grants of $800 a piece, one for each region. In 2008 Kristine EhrleWebb of Texas became a recipient. She rode in the Jr/ YR clinic with Jan Ebeling. For more information about the Jr / YR clinics visit For information about the Isler Fund:





April 24, 25, 26, 2009

Great Southwest Equestrian Center--Katy, Texas

Classic I and Breed Show April 24-25, 2009 and Classic II April 26, 2009 Official USDF Qualifying Competitions for the 2009 Great American Insurance Group/USDF Regional Dressage Championship and the 2009 Southwest Dressage Championships Official Qualifying Competitions for the 2009 USDF/Platinum Performance FEI North American Junior and Young Riders' Championships and 2009 Collecting Gaits Farm/USEF National Junior, Young Rider & Brentina Cup Championships; Official Qualifying Competition for the 2009 Markel/USEF Young Horse Dressage Program and USEF National Developing Horse Dressage Championship (sponsored by the Dutta Corporation and PSI); Great American Insurance Group/USDF Southern Breeders Championship Series Qualifier (Fri) USEF High Performance Qualifying Competition for the 2009 USEF National Intermediare I Championship

Judges: Gary Rockwell FEI "O" (Wellington, FL), Lorraine MacDonald FEI "I" (Caledon, ON, CAN), Sarah Geikie FEI "C" (Lebanon, CT), Ulrich Schmitz "S" and "r" Dressage Sport Horse Judge (Queen Creek, AZ) Technical Delegate: Joyce Hardesty "R", Overland Park, KS


For info, contact Amanda Miller at [email protected]


April 12 (last call) Submit to [email protected] For all rates, go to


Great Opportunities for Stallion and Mare Owners! Promote your stallion! Purchase breed fees at special prices! For info on Stallion Service Auction [email protected]

For show info - [email protected]


The silent auction shall be governed by the following terms and conditions:

· · ·

The 2009 Stallion Service Auction (SSA) will be conducted by Silent Auction Bidding only. The minimum bid shall be one half of the posted breeding fee unless otherwise indicated. All auctions will end Saturday, April 25th, 6:30pm. Winners will be announced Sunday, April 26th, 11:00am.


Bids are binding and cannot be withdrawn. A bidder may bid on any number of stallion services, however, by placing a bid you are making a legal contract between yourself and the Houston Dressage Society for each service you bid on.


Winners will be notified via email at the close of the auction. Credit card must be on file, or check given to bid.


In the event there are unsold services at the close of the regular auction, the remaining stallions will be listed in a separate "Buy It Now" auction.

· ·

THERE WILL BE NO BID WITHDRAWALS, EXCEPTIONS OR REFUNDS GIVEN. The stallion owner has the right to refuse any mare not registered with the stallion's approved registries. The winning bidder agrees to abide by the terms of the stallion owner's breeding con tract, and HDS does not assume liability for any disputes that may arise between the bidder and the stallion owner.


No refunds will be given. In other words, if you don't want to pay for the stallion service, don't bid!


The auction is open to any stallion owner who wants to donate a breeding. However, the stallion MUST be registered with a breed association, and be able to prove registration(s).


HDS will keep all funds, EXCEPT for ALL BOOKING and COLLECTION and SHIPPING fees, which are payable to the stallion owner separate from the bid.


Stallions must be submitted no later than Friday, April 10th, 10:00pm CT, unless otherwise stated.


Stallion owner must provide a copy of stallion's contract for potential bidders to view, as well as an ad to display on the auction table. Ad must be no larger than 8x10. Ad will not be returned after auction. FOR MORE INFO, contact AMANDA MILLER [email protected]

Is Proud to Present



April 4 & 5, Saturday, Sunday hosted at Honey Brook Farm Hockley, TX Riding Spots are Available Auditors are Invited and Welcome Complimentary Lunch will be Served

Christine was born and raised in Germany and was a longtime rider for the Hanoverian Auction Sale in Verden Germany. She trained with Jo Hinneman in Germany for 5 1/2 years and has competed internationally in the U.S. and in Europe, and was the winner of the USET Intermediare1 Championships, riding Etienne. She was a member of the 2000 Olympic Dressage Team in Sydney, Australia, winning a team bronze riding Etienne.

For more information, contact: Darcy Buell 435-962-1380

Charles de Kunffy Clinic

Tuesday, April 21, 2009 & Wednesday April 22, 2009

Host/Contact: Suzan Saylor 979-865-0103 Location: D and S Ranch 6345 Smith Road Bellville, Texas77418 Time: Starts 9:00 a.m. Ends 4:00 p.m. Riders & Auditors:

· Possible riding slot · Auditors Welcome

$25/day $250 per ride


(Continued from page 1)

Q: How did you like the weather? Pretty balmy for early March, eh? A: Yes, the weather was pretty balmy! Almost could have waived coats. As long as I keep leasing the entire complex, front and back arenas, we are sure to keep having pretty good weather. It's only when I NEED an outdoor arena, that the skies open up and/or the temperature drops into the 20's. (I'm sure some of the competitors from Frostbite 10 years ago remember exactly what I'm talking about....) Q: Now that some scientists have declared global warming, have you considered changing the name of your show? (That's an attempt at a funny question.) A: If I change the name it will be cold for sure. Calling it "Frostbite" is just to taunt Mother Nature into proving me wrong. Q: Did anything unusual or exciting happen? A: Not really... I know the judges in Rings 1 and 2 had a candy fight from their judges stands at one point, but other than that everything ran pretty uneventfully. Q: Horse shows are seeing a decline in entries due to the economy. I understood you were short some riders as well.

Photo by Syrisse Longbottom

Photo by Syrisse Longbottom

Marc Borcshneck and Uvaldi, 64.524% at Second Level T4 AA

A: Yes, the numbers were definitely down from past years. Last year we had 150 horses; this year we had 100, some of which were noncompetes. I'm sure the economy had a lot to do with it. All these years I've kept the Frostbite show one show over two days. But since I'm afraid the economy isn't going to turn around for awhile, I think next year and beyond it will be Frostbite 1 and Frostbite 2, to make the weekend count for more toward USDF and SWDC. Need to make those dollars stretch.... Q: Who were the nonriding stars at your show? A: I had all kinds of nice remarks from competitors about how easy our volunteers were to deal with and how smoothly things ran because of them. It really is all because of them they're fantastic and they keep coming back year after year. Of course, if they didn't, they know I'd make their lessons the following week all without stirrups.... Also, I think Julie and Lew Harkness did a great job. This is the first year they've secretaryd for me and I think they are incredi bly efficient. Q: I see you've scheduled some schooling shows this year. A: Yes, actually there are four Freestyle Farm schooling shows on the calendar for this year: May 3, July 12, Sept 13, and Nov 8. We'll see how that goes! Maybe I should call them the 'Gully Washer' shows so that it doesn't rain.....

Sandra Adair and Zandra ISF, 72.609% at Training Level T1 OP

Photo by Syrisse Longbottom

Tim Martin and Don Juli, 65% at First Level T4 AA




Photo by Syrisse Longbottom

Photo by Syrisse Longbottom

Elizabeth Fletcher and Roja, 71.458% 1st4th Freestyle Champions

Reagan MabrayBarry on the familiar spots of Pay N Go

Photo by Karen Roepke

Announcer Gillian Gourlay

Leslie Cummings and Espresso, 55.745% at Grand Prix B AA

Photo by Syrisse Longbottom

Photo by Syrisse Longbottom

Lynda Langston on Kyra Von Foster, 66.8% at Training Level T4 AA

Virginia Johnson on Exclusive Sport, 65.20% at Training Level T4 AA




Photo by Syrisse Longbottom

Photo by Syrisse Longbottom

Champions Gon Stevens and Farewell B, 68.684% at First Level T4 AA

Katie Conover on Beanie Baby, 68.40% at Training Level T4 JR


Open: Sandra Adair/Zandra ISF 72.609% at Training 1 Amateur: Gon Stevens/Farewell B 68.684% at First 4 Junior: Hayley Linton/Coppertone 68.696% at Training 1


Training Level Champion: Sandra Adair/Zandra ISF 72.198% Reserve: Sarah Clark/Rosemel's Brandy 68.200% First Level Champion: Gon Stevens/Farewell B 66.184% Reserve: Matt Cunningham/Vivienne 65.680% Second Level Champion: Susan Shiba/Fer De Lance 65.715% Reserve: Matt Cunningham/Don't Worry 65.477% Third Level Champion: Daeme Laves/SoHo 61.062% Reserve: Matt Cunningham/Don't Worry 60.698% Fourth Level Champion: Kathy Campbell/Prestige 59.678% Reserve: Melanie Appel/Solitaire 57.073% FEI Champion: Lurena BellStanley/Passadena 64.869% Reserve: Eva OldenbroekTabor/Uberlinus 62.895% Young Horse Champion: Carsten Meyer/Neferhotep 71.40% Reserve: Sarah Clark/Looky I've Got Spots 67.60% Freestyle Champion: Elizabeth Fletcher/Roja 69.896% (No Reserve Champion)

Zella Rowland Memorial Highpoint Freestyle Trophy: Elizabeth Fletcher/Roja 71.458%

Photo by Syrisse Longbottom

Photo by Karen Roepke

Eva OldenbroekTabor on Uberlinus, 63.158% at Int I OP

Nancy Flanders and Vancouver, 66.19% at Second Level T4 AA

APRIL 2009



Photo by Karen Roepke

Barbie Piccinni on Royal Tango, 64.894% at Grand Prix B OP




Photo by Syrisse Longbottom

Photo by Karen Roepke

Susan Shiba on Fer De Lance, 66.905% at Second Level T4 OP

Anne Brickert and Kassidy, 63.810% at Second Level T4 AA

Photo by Karen Roepke

Photo by Syrisse Longbottom

Bridget Rogers and Goldige, Third Level AA

Carole Skelt on Lucille Ball, 61.579% at First Level T4 AA

Photo by Syrisse Longbottom

Photo by Syrisse Longbottom

Jerry Lyons and Laurentide Ice, 61.60% at Training Level T4 AA

Reagan MabrayBarry on Volturno Interagro, 68.4% at Training Level T4 OP

APRIL 2009


So What's a Valentine's Day RAT?

By Marie Morgan Although the day began a bit cloudy and gloomy, we had a won derful time at the first Valentine's Day RAT (Ride a Test) at Sol stice Farms. Nothing makes a gray cloud disappear like a bunch of riders and horses dressed in pink and having fun. OK so maybe it was the day after Valentines (Feb. 15) and perhaps we made hangovers disappear but I digress . . . The day began with a serious ride a test that Marie Morgan judged. Mandi Krasney/Mattie and Barbara Stewart/Usache both rode Second level tests, taking advantage of this educa tional opportunity to improve their showing skills. Clio Rooney and Charlie took their first level performance to a new high fo cusing on details. Cyndi Craig brought her fabulous new youngster, Faxx, to show us all how it should be done! Dela Huss, Megan Rahlfs, and Mala Murthy dipped their booted toes in the dressage waters for a test. Then the real fun began! We tried a new idea that everyone seemed to enjoy The "Share a Ride". Suitable horses were vol unteered and their names put into a hat. Eager (sort of ) volun teer riders drew a name and then rode training level test three on a horse unknown to them. I hear there was some bargaining and bribery going on in the barn after the names were drawn but who knows! A special thanks goes to all our riders, helpers and volunteer horses for being such good sports! We hope to do this again in about two months. It is a wonderful way to work at dressage, but feel like you are at a party. Join us next time! Valentine RATs Barbara Stewart and Usache Second level test four Mandi Krasney and Arabesque,Second 1,2 Clio Rooney Charlie First 1,2 Cyndi Craig, Faxxsimilie Tr.1,2 Dela Huss Henry Tr. 1 Megan Rahlfs, Tabasco Tr. 1 Mala Murthy, Merlin, Tr. 1 Share a Ride Darian, Megan, Mala, Carlan, Mandi, Darian Tredennick Helpers Eliz Copper, Carlan Hassoldt, Diane McManus, Stefni Tredennick, Mandi Krasney, Dela and Mike Huss, Valerie Jefferis, Jamie Bruns

$500 Jackpot Winners at Solstice Farms' St. Patty Day's Schooling Show

Congratulations to the $500.00 Jackpot Training Level Test Three winners at the 2009 St. Patty's Day Schooling Show held by Solstice Farms: 1st Place: Kendall Raisbeck(JR) on Farewell B 76% 2nd Place Mandi Krasney(AA) on Merlin 74.0% 3rd Place Becky Brake(AA/YR) on Maxamillion 73.6% Due to the popularity and success of the class, Marie Mor gan of Solstice Farms will again offer the Jackpot Training Level Test Three at her Mother's Day Out Show on May 10, 2009. This jackpot class is open to all riders, but profession als can only ride horses that have not been shown above First Level. Juniors and amateurs can ride any horse, includ ing a school master. Once a rider has won this class, she/he cannot compete for the jackpot again.




Report by Syrisse Longbottom

KATY, TX ­ Approximately 25 HDS members were treated (for free by HDS) to a delightful three hour lecture and video presen tation by professional freestyle designer, Karen Robinson, on the art and science of creating and riding musical freestyles on Sun day, March 15 at the Great Southwest Equestrian Center. San dra Adair arranged for Karen to give the lecture, hosted by HDS, in conjunction with a twoday riding clinic the following week during the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show. After Sandra welcomed the attendees, a repre sentative from Brehm's Feed, one of the riding clinic sponsors, gave an informative presenta tion on various supple ments offered by his company. Auditors also enjoyed complimentary snacks and a silent auc tion that included a $100 gift certificate from Charlotte's Sad dlery (which Karen made Sandra Adair, clinic organizer sure she won), two $25 gift certificates from The Horse of Course, and several donated bags of the new Progres sive Super Feed, Loose Minerals, and weight product Envision, all from Brehm's.

Karen lectured to the group for a full three hours, but the time flew by in a hurry due to the compelling topic and the fact that Karen was such an e n t e r t a i n i n g speaker. For those who were unable to at tend, you really missed a good thing. Never theless, the following is a summary of Karen Robinson Karen's lecture Freestyle guru, designer and lecturer for your reference. THERE'S ALWAYS A BIT OF SURPRISE IN FREESTYLE Karen started her lecture by showing an awesomely performed freestyle by her client, Bernadette Pujals, a Spaniard now riding for Mexico. Bernadette's story was fascinating and perfectly illustrates the element of surprise in freestyle. She was the first rider to represent Mexico at the World Equestrian Games (Aachen 2006). Karen created Berna's freestyle and selected the music, but then it got put aside when, approximately two months before WEG, Berna lost the ride on her horse, Vincent, due to a divorce. She managed to get him back, but only 2 weeks before WEG. Since they were relative newcomers to the European dressage scene and hadn't been able to train together for several months, Berna wasn't expecting to finish high enough to qualify to ride a freestyle. But they did qualify, so she had to quickly refresh her memory of Karen's creation. Up to that point, Berna had heard the new freestyle music only one time. Fortunately, Karen was covering the WEG as a journalist, so she was available to help Berna rehearse the freestyle the night before the competition. As we saw on the video, Berna and Vincent performed brilliantly ­ with sharp and concise movements to strong and committed beats to the music ­ as if they had been practicing it for months. A little bit of surprise is a good thing, Karen said, but that is not the kind of stress any one wants to regularly deal with!

(Continued on page 21)

An attentive group at the lecture, including Winston the JRT



Karen Robinson Freestyle Clinic (Continued from page 20)

test for sustainability of the trot tempo.



According to Karen, selecting and putting together the music is not the hard part. The real rocket science is finding a collection of music that matches the horse's footfalls and provides that extra `something' for the horse. Another challenge in creating a good freestyle, especially for professional designers, is to avoid sending a rider "to the prom in the same dress". It is difficult to maintain variety in the music. Many riders end up performing to the same music as others in the same competition, which removes much of the distinctive ness ­ besides being less entertaining or memorable. Keep in mind that spectators usually remember a freestyle by only one song and/or a particular movement to one song. Unless a person has a vast music library, using iTunes is now al most de rigueur. iTunes has radically changed and broadened the variety, not to mention making the search and selection of music vastly more economical. Now a person can listen to the same song in many different varieties without having to buy a single CD ­ but can then download the songs for 99 cents each! START YOUR METRONOMES The first step in creating a freestyle is measuring the horse's gaits with a metronome, then measuring the music. This measure ment establishes the tempo and lets the rider know how much the horse's tempo varies from the tempo of the music, which indicates how much the music may need to be sped up or slowed down. As a point of reference, the average trot tempo is 150 beats per minute (bpm), although it can range anywhere from 140160 bpm. The average canter tempo is 90 bpm. Karen recommends electronic metronomes that beep or show colored dots. She uses Seiko brand, but there are many manu facturers from which to choose. Metronomes can be purchased in any music store. A midrange cost is $25 to $45. Karen actu ally works with two metronomes, with one set at the trot tempo and the other at the canter tempo, so that she doesn't have to switch between settings. As a designer, she also uses the type of CD player that DJs use, which allows her to speed up or slow down the music by as much as 12%. For music mixing software, Karen recommends programs such as Sound Porch, Cakewalk, and Apple's Garage Band. Some are complicated; others are not. She prefers a very simple software program for her freestyle designs.

Do measure his tempo on both reins. Horses are asymmetri cal due to genetic, soundness and strength issues. Typically, they have a slower tempo going to the right. Do periodically recheck his trot tempo. Since the trot is the more developable gait, a horse's trot tempo will likely change throughout his career.


Lecture attendees shopping at the Silent Auction


Music can either enhance or detract from the quality of the gait. For instance, with the right music you can strategically hide a disconnected canter. It is better for the music to be quicker than the horse's tempo, than to be slower. When the music is slower than the horse, it makes the rider chase the horse which makes the horse look like it's moving faster, but with a loss of suspension. In freestyle mu sic, delay equals suspension and drama, so loss of suspension can be a double negative. A single down or driving beat, as in most techno music, sounds quicker than what it measures. It is always best to have a beat plus tension, i.e. boom chicka boom chicka boom. For FEI riders, be sure to measure the tempi changes. It is the highlight of the test, but the tempo tends to slow down as it pro gresses. There's no need to measure the canter pirouettes. It is simply a slower canter. Waltz music does not work for canter ­ unless it is double fast enough or slow enough to match the beat, but that is rare. The walk is the one gait you don't need to follow the tempo of the music. Lateral work is another time when matching the tempo is not important. Riders usually want to speed up the trot music, but then it starts to sound frantic. Riders usually want to slow down the canter,

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· · · ·

Don't measure his tempo while at freedom. Don't measure his tempo when a trainer or someone else is riding him. Do measure his tempo when you are riding him. Do measure his tempo in the lateral work. This is the real

APRIL 2009


Karen Robinson Freestyle Clinic (Continued from page 21) but then it starts to sound klunky. The ideal is to find music that doesn't require any changes to be made to it. Not all digital music is suitable for speeding up. Data is actually lost in the digital editing process which can cre ate an undesirable anomaly in the sound. Music with lots of string instruments and sustained notes don't work well. Karaoke versions of songs are easy to use, except that they tend to provide only the background beat. There are, however, some karaoke versions that are definitely better than others. Do not select music with dominant vocals. The message can easily overpower the visual presentation. Vocals are okay, though, if not too loud and if they enhance the movement. Small amounts of vocals are starting to become popular in free styles, and some riders are even including their own short voice overs for special effect. Riders can get away with using Bob Seger vocals, for instance, at the entry and in the walk, but such theatrics are usually enjoyed most by the judges at the beginning or at the end. The best time to add risky music is at the end of the freestyle because the judge will have already made its d e c i s i o n s based on prior move ments. Representative from Brehm's Feed Disco music is difficult to use because its tempo is only 120 bpm, which is much slower than the average 150 bpm for regular trot work. Consequently, disco is best reserved for passage work which has a slower tempo. Don't take as many musical risks in the lower level tests. It can feel overpowering and out of scale. MUSICAL SELECTIONS: IT'S NOT ABOUT YOU Sure, everyone wants to ride to music that they like, but music that the rider personally likes doesn't necessarily work for her horse. The top priority is finding music that creates something special for the horse, so keep an open mind when it comes to selecting music. It must match the horse, e.g. no heavy music for a delicate Arabian horse. It should emphasize the positive and neutralize any negatives.

At the lower levels, the audience will be energized more by the music than the movement, so select music that is especially en tertaining to them. It is best to stick to a theme of mu sic performed in a consistent style. It should not sound as though the radio station is r e p e a t e d l y being changed or that the music is skip ping eras of Karen Robinson time. Consis tently themed music allows for better musical transitions be tween the gaits. Soundtracks are hard to use because they can have so many varieties of music in the score, making it difficult to create seamless transitions. There is a tendency at Grand Prix to continually change the mu sic to match the transitions. Karen noted that Anky van Grusen never uses more than six segments in her Grand Prix freestyles. Contrary to some people's assertions, horses do not `listen' to or follow music. Horses listen to music only to the extent that they hear a series of sounds ­ mainly, they just react to sound. Granted, horses may behave differently when being ridden to music. Possible reasons are that they associate music with per forming at a show. Most likely they are reacting to the rider's physical and emotional response to music. In any event, horses do not change their rhythm or gait to match the music. Some music, however, can create fear in a horse, e.g. deep booms and high pitches. Usually any extreme in the frequency, whether high or low, can create fear in the horse. High pitches, as in violin music, can be fearful. Mares tend to be more sensi tive to extremes in sound frequencies. Some horses react to the speakers more than others, depending on where they are located. The best way to desensitize a horse to the speakers is by exposure to them. Start with a boom box at home, then move it around the arena. Make it part of his daily environment. Also, be sure to inquire about the PA system and location of speakers at the venues where you plan to show and try to mimic the arrangement at home.


Mistakes made during the performance of a freestyle can often turn into creative results if the rider can think fast and recover quickly. Bernadette's WEG freestyle was yet another good ex ample. During her ride, she inserted serpentines to cover for a

(Continued on page 23)



Karen Robinson Freestyle Clinic--(Continued from page 22) moment of indecision as to which way to turn in her unfamiliar freestyle. During a test, it is easier to catch up to the music, but more diffi cult to kill time. It is easier to start with a higher level freestyle and reduce it to a lower level freestyle to allow for development. Conversely, it is more difficult to start with a simple freestyle and then add diffi culty. Walk the Line Should a freestyle ever begin at the work? Heavens no. It is boring. The only time to start out with walk is if the horse will not walk later in the test, e.g. after it has cantered and gotten goosed up a bit. For the walk, it is best to have 30 seconds of uninterrupted music, otherwise it sounds chopped up. To get brownie points at the walk, select interesting music that enter tains and provides a treat for the judge. Hot to Trot Don't get stuck in predictable routines. Be creative and ride shoulderin at the quarter lines or down the middle. It must be parallel to the long side, though. Link the trot with other move ments to make it more interesting. The score for degree of difficulty is the only artistic mark with no coefficient. It should be the judge's least important decision about the freestyle, but it is often what the judge comments on the most. Be aware that judges don't necessarily `know' music, but they do know choreography and thus are more likely to make comments on difficulty. It generally isn't worth the risk to increase degree of difficulty if the movement is likely to be blown or the quality diminished. Also remember that judges start with a `6' in mind for the move ments. A norisk taker can easily get a `6' just by not failing, but a risktaker that fails will be penalized below a `6' since it impacts the score for movement and harmony. Counter the Canter Even though Second Level doesn't contain counter canter, it is good to include it in the program anyway. Third Level freestyles are one of the hardest to do because counter canter is required and by that time in the training the counter canter has given way to work on tempi changes. Set up the canter work with a pattern that engages the horse. Do walk transitions in serpentine across the short side. The turn engages the hindquarters and the wall acts as a half halt, which sets up the horse for a great canter depart. If the horse is good at simple changes, then include more of them, e.g. 4 loop serpentine with 3 simple changes. Or, do two simple changes on the long line; counter canter in corner; simple

change on the diagonal; counter canter; simple change; canter on the opposite rein. MAINTAIN PRIORITIES Karen's recommended priorities are: Priority 1: High Quality Priority 2: Interesting Choreography Priority 3: Difficulty Symmetry is pleasing to the human eye, so do movements equally on each side and in the same place. With travers/renvers, pick the one the horse does best, but re member to be consistent on both sides. How much of a movement should be included? Go by the amount and steepness in the highest test of the level, without sacrificing quality. Showing only the minimum amount required, though, can be dangerous because it risks a score of `insufficient' if it takes awhile to get the movement started. Never perform a movement more than once if a `6' can't be earned for it. Always show a movement on the horse's stronger side. Don't do lateral work more than once, except for half pass at the upper levels. Only in rare in stances should the extended trot be Winston, Susan Howard's precocious JRT performed on the diagonal. Also, never show an extended gait on a circle. Judges know that a horse physically cannot achieve full extension on a curve. If the horse has weak areas, put those movements in an obvious place (based on the tests at that level) so that the judge can rec ognize it. Never make the judge wonder what the gait was sup posed to be. Remember, the judge doesn't have a test to pro vide guidance as to the rider's intent. Extended gaits are okay on the centerline when the horse is really straight. Be aware, though, that nothing else can be seen, so be sure to show that particular gait somewhere else in the test so that the judge can see and score the gait.

(Continued on page 24)

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Karen Robinson Freestyle Clinic (Continued from page 23)



By Syrisse Longbottom with Barbara Stewart

Photos by Syrisse Longbottom On the Tuesday and Wednesday following the lecture by Karen, Sandra Adair hosted a 2day riding clinic with Karen Robinson for riders interested in either creating a freestyle or revamping one, and also for auditors to watch Karen implement the design process. Barbara Stewart, with her 8yr old Dutch Warmblood gelding, Usache, signed up to work with Karen on creating their very first freestyle. "Prior to my involvement with this clinic, I had not considered even beginning to create a freestyle. In my mind that was for the "big" riders. Discussing the freestyle with Sandra Adair (clinic organizer) and my trainer Marie Morgan, I realized that the freestyle could be a fun and diverse training tool, removing some of the focus from the prescribed tests, yet still focus ing on required movements for a particular level," Barbara explained. The following is a snapshot of Days 1 and 2 of Barbara's riding clinic with Karen where together they experimented and strategized to find the best type of music and choreography for her and Usache. Karen Robinson coaching Barbara on Usache

So, if the technical elements are at least twothirds of the mark, and the music interpretation is only 11%, a rider might ask, "Why worry so much about the mu sic"? Yes, judges weigh the technical more than the artistic, but really great music can provide a winning edge. Again, it's not what genre of music that you or the judge may like, but rather what works best for the horse. Great music creates distinction between the other competitors. Note that the first two artistic marks (rhythm/energy and harmony) are actually technical marks and will be judged accordingly. THE TOTAL SHOULD BE GREATER THAN THE SUM OF ITS PARTS As Karen reminded the audience, there is a dimension of emotion when riding to music that does not exist when there is no soundtrack, and good music can transform the way a horse looks when performing in the ring. With that I mind, Karen closed the lecture with an inspirational video of another one of her cli ents, Lauren Barwick, a gold medal winner at the Hong Kong Paralympics. Lauren performed her freestyle to a delicate Asian melody, a nod to the host country, something most of the other riders avoided, but which certainly was a crowd pleaser. With no feeling in her legs from the waist down, Lauren rode not only the walk and trot, but also the canter and counter canter, neither of which was required in her Division II riding category. The technical risks she factored into her freestyle, combined with musical artistry and an awareness of her audience, resulted in something far more special and greater than an Olympic gold medal. That special `something' is the goal every freestyle rider should strive for.


Q: How did Karen kick off the design process? A: We began by discussing the level of freestyle that I wanted. Usache and I are schooling second level movements, but have only ridden Second Level Test 1 in a schooling show with middle of the road re sults. We have a way to go in second level. however my objective was not to show the freestyle this season (2009). I wanted a freestyle we could grow into. I asked Karen to give her input if she saw that our movements were not enough for second level and we would back it down to first level. Q: Karen asked what types of music you liked/disliked. She mentioned country. What were your initial preferences? A: I told Karen that I was an open book. That I liked Sinatra, big band, jazz and rocknroll, but I was open to anything.

(Continued on page 25)

Karen Robinson



Birth of a Freestyle (Continued from page 24) Q: What were Karen's initial thoughts about Usache's music? A: Karen first mentioned Native American music and then per haps African music. Q: How did Karen determine Usache's tempo? A: Karen instructed me to trot and include circles, straight lines and later movements. She told me when she had measured his trot beats per minute and then asked me to move to the canter with similar instructions. Q: Karen's first trot music selection was Native American mu sic with a fairly strong techno beat. Did you like it when you first heard it? A: Yes, I did like it. It would not be my first selection to listen to at home, but I like music with a strong beat. Q: After testing a couple music selections on Usache Karen said he was a "techno beat dude". Did you hear that? A: No, but I like it! Q: The second and third trot selections were slightly different. What did you think about them? A: Native American music again, I believe from the same group. It had a heavier down beat and it made Usache's move ments appear heavier. He is a big horse so we wanted something not too frufru, but anything too heavy would make him look heavy and slow. The third selection had a lot more background sounds to it and was busier. Usache voted by shying twice at the sound coming from the speak ers.

A: Yes, the first canter music selection had a strong down beat, which was accurate for Usache, but the down beat over emphasized the landing stride at canter and created a sense of heaviness in his movement. The second canter selection had a medium strong down beat, but included some embel lishment in the betweenbeats that deemphasized the down beat. It worked better because it was a little more forgiving of the moment of the down stride and created a sense of suspension. The third canter selection had less of a down beat and included even more embellishment in the betweenbeats. That one worked best of all because it cre ated a sense of reach in Usache's movement.


Q: This was choreog raphy day. How did the ses sion start? A: We began by replay ing the c a n t e r The Wizard at Work s el ec t ion from the previous day to confirm the fit. Usache was tired. The first day we had a long warmup and trailered in and out both days. I think I was a little tired too! Q: Did the previous day's music selections still seem to work? A: The trot music just fits him, techno beat dude that he is! Karen wanted to try one other canter option with less of a downbeat, but we all agreed the original selection was the best fit, tired horse or not. Q: Since you decided to shoot for a second level freestyle, what movements would be required? A: Freewalk of 20 meters minimum Shoulder in at trot* Travers and/or Renvers at Trot* Medium trot 10 meter circle in canter* Simple change of lead* Medium canter *At least one must be shown in both directions Q: Which movements did you want to emphasize or de emphasize? A: In the freestyle you want to show your horse's strong points. Some movements, such as renvers, are more difficult to ini tiate. It is better to use travers unless your horse has a tal ent for renvers. At second level you also have counter canter. It's not required, but we discussed adding it for diffi

(Continued on page 26)

Q: You, Karen and the auditors voted that the first selection with the techno beat worked best. What type of music was selected for the canter work? A: Karen chose music from the same genre as the trot music. Q: Karen introduced several versions of canter music, each with varying amounts of sound between the down beats. Did you have a preference?

The dreaded speaker. Continual exposure to speakers is the only way to prevent horses from shying at them, Karen said.

APRIL 2009


Birth of a Freestyle (Continued from page 25) culty. Since Usache and I have good counter canter days and notsogood counter canter days we decided to pass on adding it. Q: What kind of strategy did you and Karen use for movements that you wanted to deemphasize? A: We trotted around with shoulderin and travers, hav ing some difficulty with travers. We initially started on the quarterline with travers, but were not getting the movement. We moved to the rail and it improved. Usache is stronger with shoulder in right and travers right, so we would show these two early on to impress the judges. Q: How did you and Karen coordinate the movements to form a test pattern? A: Karen likes symmetry with the test, as do I. We began to put movements together, highlighting Usache's strength combined with symmetry. The choreography then came very naturally. As we moved to the canter with the 10 meter circles, we knew we wanted to put the circles in an interesting place, not the typical A, C, E or B. We chose P and V. That gave a natural oppor tunity to add the medium canter when coming out of the circles. For the simple changes we first tried them on the diagonal. Karen noticed Usache's tendency to get strong after canter work, so we moved the simple lead changes to come after a turn. That makes the down transition more likely to happen and felt very comfortable for us. Usache has a very strong trot gait and we wanted to emphasize this strength in the test. Q: Did you actually pull together a test pattern the sec ond day? A: Given that Usache was tired that day, we did not at tempt to ride the entire test for timing. Instead we decided to outline the choreography and then, as Usa che and I get stronger in the test movements, we will have a video made of us riding the choreography. We will send the video to Karen and she will be able to time the movements and set the music. Q: What was your favorite part of the design process? A: Selecting music was fun, but the choreography was just as exciting as you focus on your horse's strengths which makes riding even more fun and natural. It was a privilege to work with someone as talented as Karen who could so easily select appropriate music and could zone in on your strengths. Q: What advice would you give to other riders about freestyle? A: Add a freestyle to your training is not just for upper level riders! Best of luck to Barbara and Usache! We look forward to seeing their musical freestyle in competition.


In her private life, HDS member Barbara Stewart is a Certified Financial PlannerTM. She worked for several years in Tokyo and Hong Kong advis ing US citizens living abroad on their financial planning needs. Barbara made a deal with her husband that, upon their return to the US, she wanted to buy a horse and start riding again. The search for a horse and a horse sport that fit in with life in the city took several years, but then she discovered dressage and Usache, her handsome Dutch Warm blood gelding. They have formed a successful partnership and regularly compete at shows. Barbara is looking forward to moving up the levels with Usache as she pursues their training in dressage and using musical freestyle as yet another tool in her training kit.

Photos by Syrisse Longbottom



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particularly General Office, Capital Expen ditures, Marketing, Publications, Mem bership, and Competition/Awards. March 27, 2009 The single largest category of expense The budget for FY 20092010, which be reductions has been made in staff related gins on April 1, 2009, has been approved costs. As of March 31, 2008, USDF had an by the Executive Board and meets the inhouse staff of 38, and as of March 16, criteria set forth within the motion passed 2009, USDF had an inhouse staff of 32. by the USDF Board of Governors (BOG), Four of those positions were eliminated in which states; "that for the 20092010 2009 and two were voluntarily vacated in budget year, a budget may be adopted 2008 but not replaced. There are no that is out of balance to the amount of plans to add or replace positions with the depreciation". That amount of de new hires during FY 20092010. We have preciation is $200,000. Also, in accor not planned any inflationbased staff dance with the BOG's directive, no dues wage increases or performance bonuses increases were incorporated in the in 2009. We have also favorably renegoti budget. ated agreements with independent con tractors and brought some functions in As compared to the planned budget for house, saving much of the associated ex fiscal year 20082009 which ends on pense. These measures are fully in effect March 31, 2009, the new budget shows for the beginning of the new budget year, an 18% or $850,193 reduction in planned April 1, 2009. operating expenses and a 22% or $1,050,193 reduction in forecasted reve The budget includes the implementation nue. The difference in these two num of a shipping and handling fee of $3.00 bers (expenses and revenue) is accounted per PM member for those who would like for in the $200,000 of depreciation. a hard copy of the 2010 Annual Directory mailed. This transaction will take place at The budget includes revised revenue fore the time of 2010 membership renewals, casts, which are based on the organiza and will be added to the PM registration tion's actual financial performance process. PM members will have the op through February 28, 2009 compared to tion to elect a free online opportunity and the same period in 2008. The revised opt out of the hard copy fee. Pages can forecasts reduce revenue predictions in be downloaded and printed as needed. most major categories. However, some new fees for service, as outlined below, Significant budget balancing recommen will be implemented. dations, made or supported by various councils and committees and subse Each council, committee, and USDF ad quently approved by the Executive ministration was asked to reduce its Board, that have member impact are budget by a weighted percent of the total shown below. All of these recommenda budget. Input was provided by all USDF tions have been incorporated in the council and committee chairs to their budget. respective budgets. The council and com mittee expense reductions, in total, ex · The Salute Gala and the Awards Ban ceeded the theoretical weighted average quet at the Annual Convention in Austin target, but very few resulted in significant will be combined into one grand gala program reductions. Most of the expense event. This initiative was supported by reductions were realized in administra both the Historical Committee and the tion, printing, mailing, and telephone. Awards Council. To make this possible, Many additional improvements were the awards presented on stage at the made by staff in department budgets, Annual Awards Banquet will be limited


to first and second rankings in all cate gories. Currently, this is the practice for All Breeds Awards, but we go to 5th place for most other year end awards. Hall Of Fame inductions and Life Time Achievement Awards will be limited to a maximum total of two in 2009.

· The Awards Council, Regional Champi

onships Committee and Sport Horse Committee recommended that effec tive for 2009 Year End Awards, Regional Championships and Breeders Champi onships certificates would be made available only online. These can be printed at any time and in any quan tity.

· Effective as of October 1, 2009, the

Awards Council recommended a rider award processing fee of $25. The award has a high service cost attached and yet does not require a rider PM membership for rider or owner or a Horse Lifetime Registration to offset that cost as other awards do. The Horse Performance Certificate is essentially a similar award for horses, which has always had a $25 processing fee at tached. Since this is a cumulative, life time award, rather than an annual award, the cost would only be incurred once per medal earned.

· The Awards Council voted to discon

tinue Pas de Deux awards starting with the 2010 competition year. Because of their unique characteristics, these awards must be manually tracked and are not supported by the data base or IT. They are labor intensive and costly to administrate in comparison to the number of members they benefit.

· The Awards Council also recommended

raising the Horse Performance Certifi cate fee from $25 to $35.

· The Sport Horse Committee recom

mended, and the Awards Council sup ported, the implementation of a $50 All

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(Continued from page 29)

Breeds Declaration "Change" fee. This fee is applied only when changing an AllBreeds declaration from one participating organiza tion to another.

· The Adult Education Council recommended increasing the University Accreditation Fees: Affiliates fee of $25 is raised to $35, and

nonaffiliates and online courses fee of $25 is raised to $50. A new annual accreditation "renewal" fee of $25 for online courses is being implemented.

· The GMO Council suggested reducing the Ruth Arvanette Grant to one per year to maintain the principal investment in the

fund. With the current market decline, this is a good investment fund management strategy.

· The Competition Management Council recommended eliminating 3copy carbon HID, membership and nonmember forms and

make them available for download from the Web site or off of a flash drive. Also recommended was replacing the Competition Management CD with a flash drive for purchase. Documents would be maintained on our Web Site for download or to the flash drive allowing for ongoing updates.

· The FEI Junior/YR Council supported reducing the number of FEI Jr/YR clinics from 9 to 5 per year. Reducing the number of clinics

will likely improve the ability to strategically position locations and dates to maximize participation by the targeted Jr/YR group. It also puts less stress on finding affordable and suitable venues and dates, and reduces the potential for cancellations.


By Beth Gold Those interested in owning DVDs of the championship dressage and jumping competition at the 2009 Rolex FEI World Cup Fi nals can now place their advance orders online at The Rolex FEI World Cup Finals return to the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas, April 1519, featuring the world's best horses and riders competing for the title of FEI World Cup Champion in the two Olympic disciplines of show jumping and dressage. The "Live and Unedited" DVDs feature all the highjumping, side stepping, nonstop equestrian action with limited graphics and commentary. "We are so excited to offer fans the opportunity to place advance orders for these DVDs of the 2009 Rolex FEI

World Cup Finals," said Liz Hughes of CarrHughes Productions, producers of the DVDs. "Horse lovers never get tired of watch ing their favorite horses and riders compete; these DVDs will be a great addition to any equestrian enthusiast's video library! Individual DVDs are available of the FEI World Cup Final Dres sage Grand Prix, FEI World Cup Final Dressage Freestyle, FEI World Cup Show Jumping Final I, FEI World Cup Show Jumping Final II, and FEI World Cup Show Jumping Final III for $20.00 each. Fans may also choose to purchase the "Ultimate FEI World Cup Fan Package" for $93.00, which includes a DVD of each of the five events. DVDs can be ordered in advance, online at, or by calling toll free within the U.S. at (888) 5467406 or (518) 9467820 for those outside of the United States. DVDs will also be sold onsite at the Rolex FEI World Cup Finals in the vendor area. Further information about the Rolex FEI World CupTM Jumping and Dressage Finals, including information on purchasing tick ets, is also available at the official website at

APRIL 2009


Core Facts About The Dressage Foundation

Think of us as your "Dressage Bank"­ a place where you can make deposits (Donations) and withdrawals (Scholarships/Grants).

Ours is a unique organization, helping the sport of Dressage with a growing array of Grants, Scholarships, Funds, Programs and Projects. A few important, highlight facts about us are these: · Our Mission is: "To cultivate and provide financial support for the advancement of Dressage." · Established in 1989 by founder Lowell Boomer (97 years of age in 2008), who is also the founding organizer of the United States Dressage Federation (USDF) in 1973. · Our business, simply stated, is: we raise money, manage it, and give it away. · We are a stand-alone Foundation. We are not part of USDF. We provide funding to USDF, its GMOs and members, as well as giving support to other Dressage/equestrian organizations, projects and programs. We are neither enmeshed in the organizational structure, nor entangled in the politics of any other equestrian organization. · Stewardship is "Job One" at The Dressage Foundation. Donor Funds are established by Board Resolution, which spells out the Funds' purpose, policies and procedures. This puts on file a stewardship governance road map, to guide future Management/Boards in carrying out precisely and perpetually the Donor's designated intent. · We are a non-profit tax-exempt corporation [IRS Code Sec. 501(c)(3)]. All Donations are tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law. · We have no dues-paying members. Our only sources of revenue are charitable contributions and earnings on our Funds and investment reserves. Donors are all-important to the Foundation; we can only give away what Donors give to us, to make all of our good works possible. · Donations come to us in all sizes ­ small, medium, large, extralarge ­ each gift is so important. Please join us in our work. Contribute to one of our present Funds, or consider establishing a Fund to help turn Dressage Dreams into Action. Those we help will be so grateful to you.

THE DRESSAGE FOUNDATION Wells Fargo Center, Suite 732 | 1248 `O' Street | Lincoln, NE 68508


by Seana Adamson, Ph.D. If you are a dressage competitor you are probably familiar with the tingling nerves and fluttering butterflies that can accompany a competitive performance. In the best of circumstances the body produces a hormonal and chemical cocktail that can allow you to achieve a state of energy, enjoyment and flow. However sometimes we can get too excited. This excessive tension can have a devastating effect on performance, leaving the rider feel ing weak, uncoordinated and forgetful. Performance anxiety is a complex subject that can have an effect from dressage competi tion, to school exams, or even between the bed sheets! There are two types of performance anxiety. The first type is mental fear, or the fear of performing badly. The second type is physical fear, or the fear of physical injury. If you have physical fear due to a past trauma or injury, I strongly suggest you seek help from a patient riding instructor, or even a psychotherapist. If your performance anxiety is mental more than physical, there are many helpful techniques. There are two basic approaches to working with performance anxiety. The first approach is to learn to decrease your anxiety. The second approach is to accept that anxiety , or intensity, is a part of competition, and develop ways to use that intensity to your advantage. DECREASING ANXIETY: Create a Relaxation Reflex: Take a single deep, cleansing breath. Smile inwardly and intentionally relax at least one set of muscles. Repeat this many times each day. Your body will start to learn to relax with a single deep breath. This can be used any time while you are riding.

If you have the time then find more extensive relaxation train ing. Yoga, meditation, and biofeedback can all provide powerful training to deal with anxiety. Exercise before you ride. I had one client who would go for a three mile run before each competition. Prepare, prepare, prepare. The more competent and prepared you feel, the less nervous you will feel. Use images. Imagine the butterflies in your stomach flying in formation. Use any image that works for you. PERFORMING WELL DESPITE ANXIETY Develop toughness by staying physically fit and practicing your mental focus long before competition day. We will discuss this more in the upcoming article on focus and concentration. Focus on those things that are under your control. The judge's opinion of your performance is not under your control, nor are your competitors. Stay in the moment or precious points can be lost due to distraction. Practice performing under pressure. Have a friend watch you ride a test. Go to competitions regularly. Practice visualizing while you exercise (more on this later), so that your brain learns to keep functioning even when under stress. Be gentle with yourself. We all make mistakes. I remember coming out of a test where I'd gone off course. "God I'm an id iot!" I exclaimed, "I am so stupid!" A dear friend of mine who was standing nearby spun around and glared at me. "Stop that" she said, "you're talking badly about my friend!" These are just a few ideas about a very complex topic. Remem ber, if you have specific concerns you would like me to address in this article you can email those concerns to me at se [email protected]

Seeking Fun-Loving Volunteers For the HDS Spring Classic

Contact Jane Holman

[email protected]



Memorize That Dressage Test

A workbook of Sport Psychology exercises de signed to teach you how to optimize your men tal game. The author, Seana Adamson, is a Ph.D. Psycholo gist, a dressage trainer, and a United States Dressage Federation Gold Medalist. This book covers much more than just memori zation. Whether you are a beginning dres sage rider, or a seasoned professional, you will find stimulating ideas and practical exercises. Learn how to refine your riding by discovering how to think like an athlete. Practical exercises show you how to strategize each section of your test. The book contains a laminated board for use with a dry erase marker (not included). This book can be used for Dressage, Eventing, or Combined Driving. The workbook is 81/2" x 11", spiral bound, 110 pages. It includes one laminated board for use with a dry erase pen, with Dressage, Eventing, and Combined Driving arenas. Dry erase pen is NOT included. _______________________________________ Order the book at Credit cards accepted through Pay Pal. Actual shipping costs plus $2 handling. Shipping discounts available for orders of multiple books. Contact Seana Adamson for cost info.

HDS Summer Shows I & II

June 13-14, 2009

Great Southwest Equestrian Center, Katy, TX

Opening Date - April 13 Closing Date - May 11

APRIL 2009



One of the more debilitat ing disablements for a horse trailer is axle failure. In addition to putting you and your horse(s) at great danger by disabling you on the side of the highway, axle failure presents an on thescene repair challenge.

Tips for Proper Trailer Axle Care

By USRider

ful not to add too much and damage your grease seals. The weak link in either oil or greasebased systems are the seals. The seals keep oil or grease in and moisture out.

"In most cases of axle failure, it will be necessary for you or your motor plan to locate emergency stabling for your horse (s), as well as alternative transportation to the stabling facil ity. This will require you to unload and reload your horses in an undesirable area. In these rare instances, USRider will request a police presence to stop traffic while the horses are being moved," said Mark Cole, managing member of US Rider. With its Equestrian Motor Plan, USRider gives you peace of mind as you travel. USRider's motor plan surpasses other roadside assistance plans by also covering horse vans, horse trailers, tow vehicles and horses. The key to avoiding this situation is simple: preventative maintenance. Make certain that your trailer axles are ser viced annually, or every 12,000 miles. While certain manu facturers make claims of lifetime bearings or maintenance-- free axles, the risk is too great not to have a simple checkup annually. This requires taking your trailer to a trusted me chanic who will inspect the axle, and replace any worn parts, and repack the bearings with hightemperature bearing grease, or change the 90 weight oil for oil bath axles. The main reason for servicing your trailer axles annually-- even if you have not used your trailer in the past year--is that moisture can build up in an axle. This can cause the grease to become diluted and break down, rendering it un able to properly lubricate. Thus, it is important to perform this simple maintenance annually--even if you do not use your trailer often, or at all. In addition to bearing failure, ir regular axle maintenance can lead to axle damage, requiring the axle to be replaced--turning an inexpensive mainte nance procedure into an expensive repair. This simple maintenance should be done even if your trailer has hubs that are equipped with grease fittings, such as those found on Bearing Buddies, and other aftermarket axle products. Although the grease fittings will allow you to add more grease, they do not provide a means to remove old, moisturediluted grease. When adding grease, be very care

For oil bath axles, which are lubricated by an oil reservoir, it is recommended to change the oil biannually. Even if the oil is full, these axles should be checked annually by a qualified mechanic. Upon visual in spection, if an oil bath system has dark or cloudy oil, have the axle serviced immediately--dark and cloudy oil indicates moisture contamination. Proper looking oil will have a golden or amber appearance. USRider recommends that horse owners carry a spare set of axle bearings when traveling. "It is much easier to locate a mechanic to make a repair than to have to locate and dis patch specific axle components," added Cole. This is espe cially important if you travel great distances, or on nights and weekends, as parts may not be available due to many parts suppliers being closed from noon Saturday until Monday morning. Contact your trailer dealer or manufacturer for the correct replacement bearings for your axles. Another important reason to have your axles serviced annu ally is that worn trailer axles will cause tires to wear improp erly, introducing a number of other hazards for traveling equestrians. In a worstcase scenario involving an axle in dire need of ser vicing, a wheel could actually come off the trailer while un derway, possibly causing irreparable damage to the axle-- not to mention the danger of a loose wheel on the highway for other motorists. If you experience axle failure, please try to pull to a safe place, off the highway as far as possible. USRider provides roadside assistance and towing services along with other travelrelated benefits to its members through the Equestrian Motor Plan. It includes standard fea tures such as flattire repair, battery assistance and lockout services, plus towing up to 100 miles and roadside repairs for tow vehicles and trailers with horses, emergency stabling, veterinary referrals and more. For more information about the USRider Equestrian Motor Plan, visit or call (800) 8441409.




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Board meetings are held the 2nd Monday of each month. Visitors are welcome. Contact Kathy Jones at [email protected] for exact location. Meetings start at 7:00pm sharp.

2009 Membership Application Classified Ads



Recognized Shows Calendar


Schooling Shows Calendar


The Board voted to reduce the newsletter ad vertising costs by approximately onehalf! New rates will be posted soon on the HDS website. Email [email protected] if you have specific questions. The news rates apply imme diately.


Clinics/Special Events Calendar

TREASURER'S REPORT ending February 28, 2009

Houston Dressage Society Condensed Income Statement For the Period Ended February 28, 2009 HDS Winter Show Recognized Show Revenue Recognized Show Expense Net Income from Recognized Shows Other Revenue and (Expense) Administrative and Supplies Bank Service Charges Education HDS Boutique Insurance Membership NewsletterAdvertsing Fees Schooling Show Sponsorship USDF National Convention Web Hosting Year End Awards Banquet Net Income Year End Awards Year End Awards Banquet Silent Auction Total Other Income Net Income for the Period Ended February 28, 2009 (599.04) (403.04) (1,053.09) 40.00 (330.00) 7,019.53 737.00 233.13 1,500.00 (751.43) (219.45) 90.68 (2,595.65) 1,214.00 4,882.64 $8,416.07 $34,095.00 30,561.57 3,533.43

APRIL 2009



President Kathy Jones [email protected] 2819550803 Vice President Cal Eller [email protected] 2817234009 Membership Nancy WalkerTaylor [email protected] 8326033835 Secretary Charles Saltzer [email protected] 2817938197 Treasurer Margaret Dhont [email protected] 7136622887 Clinics/Education/Scholarships Susan Shiba [email protected] Recognized Shows Marilyn Kulifay [email protected] 7138610761 Schooling Shows Jeanette Snow [email protected] 2815330371 Historian/Recorder Karen Roepke [email protected] 7135030363 Volunteer Coordinator Jane Holman [email protected] Advertising & Sponsorship Amanda Miller Hudson [email protected]

Dedicated to Furthering the Art and Education of Dressage

Junior/Young Riders Cat Smith [email protected] Awards Chair Laurie Jackson [email protected] 7134715775 Special Events Sylvia Workman [email protected] 9363215196 Publications/Marketing Syrisse Longbottom [email protected] 9363723367

13035 Dogwood Blossom Houston, TX 77065



Silver Creek Farms in Broken Arrow, OK is working to establish a unified testing program for all sport horse registries in North America that would replace the 100Day testing format. To that end, repre sentatives of the major North American sport horse registries attended a meeting at Silver Creek Farm on March 5, 2009, including the American Hanoverian Society, American Holsteiner Horse Association, American Trakehner Association, Belgian Warmblood Breeding Association, Canadian Sport Horse Association, International Sporthorse Registry / Oldenburg North America, KWPN NA, Oldenburg Horse Breeders' Society, Rheinland PfalzSaar International, and Swedish Warmblood Association of North America. "We are trying to create a testing location that is central in North America, and that is not owned, operated, or financed by any registry entity," said Summer Stoffel, president of Silver Creek Farms, who has previously hosted 30Day Tests and will host a 70Day Test in the fall. The goal is to establish a performance test that will be recognized both in North America and allow reciprocity with the Euro pean registries. Previous 100Day Tests have put North American breeders on par with Europe and have moved North American breeding programs forward. With the changes made to the test in Europe, and concerns about longterm impact and injuries on young stallions, an implementation of the 30/70 Day Test pro gram will address those issues.


HDS Newsletter_April 2009

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HDS Newsletter_April 2009