Margaret Freeman, of Tryon NC, is a USEF senior dressage judge and an FEI-level competitor with her Friesian-cross mare. She’s a freelance writer/editor for horse magazines and covered the equestrian events at seven Olympics for the Associate Press. She is the Executive Board secretary of the USDF and is active with youth dressage activities, including Dressage4Kids Inc. and Lendon Gray’s Youth Dressage Festival (NY). She’s an experienced show organizer and was on the founding committees of CDCTA (VA) and Dressage at Devon (PA).
The far end of the arena may be the most neglected part of a dressage test.
I was gratified recently to hear a former U.S. team rider tell of an experience early in her career. She was just riding in a field, practicing some movements, with all going well. Ok, she decided, I’ll run through the test. Suddenly her horse seemed to change, from loose and relaxed to stiff and tense.