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Learn By Levels

Credit: Courtesy, Heather Lizotte Heather Lizotte rides her 3-year-old Appaloosa mare, Desi, at Training Level.

Free Your Senses to Feel Rhythm, Balance and Alignment in the Saddle

Biomechanics expert Susanne von Dietze critiques Heather Lizotte at Training Level.

Credit: Dusty Perin To perform all the movements of First Level well, the rider must be able to integrate and have a feel for each of the first four qualities of the Training Scale.

Reviewing First Level Skills

Be sure that you have mastered all of the skills required in First Level to progress to Second Level.

Credit: Courtesy, Susanne Way Susanne Way rides her 11-year-old Morgan gelding, Joey, at Training Level.

Correct Your Leg Position for Clearer Aids

Susanne von Dietze critiques Susanne Way at Training Level.

Credit: Beth Baumert To ride the counter canter well, one must understand that it is a balanced canter performed on the outside lead. This means that if the horse is tracking right, the rider purposefully asks him to canter on the left lead.

A First Look at Counter Canter

Learn the basics of this challenging test of First Level skills.

Credit: Courtesy, Corinne Foxley Bomol and Corinne Foxley demonstrate a successful First Level lengthening. In First Level, it is acceptable to rise the trot during the lengthening and can be helpful to encourage more swing in the horse’s back. Bomol is a Russian Warmblood formerly owned by the late Betty Thorpe.

Learn About Lengthenings at First Level

First Level continues this month with a closer look at lengthenings.

Credit: Jaye Tatone Photography Raven Morris and her 11-year-old Welsh pony, Silver Lining, compete at Training Level.

Adjust Your Body Balance

Biomechanics expert Susanne von Dietze critiques Raven Morris at Training Level.


The Golden Rules of the Dressage Warm-Up Arena

Learn how to stay sane amid the pre-test chaos

The trot loop

Upgrade Your Dressage Test Riding

Courtney King-Dye Try shares tips to improve your scores in the show ring.

Credit: Courtesy, Beckie Samuels Beckie Samuels rides Gratitude, an 8-year-old Holsteiner mare, at Training Level.

Develop a Supportive Leg

Axel Steiner critiques Beckie Samuels at Training Level.

Credit: Courtesy, Alison King Alison King rides her 6-year-old Oldenburg-cross gelding, Welterful, at Intro and Training Levels.

Tips to Free Your Hip Joints and Deepen the Contact of Your Dressage Seat

Susanne von Dietze critiques Alison King at Intro and Training Levels.


How to Ride the Rein-Back with Mary Ann Grant

Learn to prepare for and ride this movement.

Credit: Courtesy, Thomas Myers The lateral lines consist of a single continuity of myofascia—a blend of muscles and tough fascial fabric—starting from the outer arch of the foot and running up the side of the leg to a wide attachment at the iliac crest. It continues up the trunk as a series of Xs crisscrossing like shoelaces up the side of the rib cage and neck to attach to the head out by the ear.

Transform Your Dressage Position

Improve your stability and effectiveness in the saddle through a better understanding of your muscle connections.

Credit: Courtesy, Patty Carley Patty Carley has started to train her 4-year-old Canadian mare, Lazy M Dawn Usona, in both dressage and driving.

Improve Your Horse's Engagement and Power

Heather Blitz critiques Patty Carley and her 4-year-old Canadian mare.


Easy Adjustments to Maximize Points in the Show Ring

Charlotte Trentelman explains areas where riders commonly lose points in the show ring.

Credit: Dancers photo courtesy, Patricia Becker Opposite: Patricia Becker and Leoluigi at the 2012 U.S. Equestrian Federation Intermediaire I Championships.

Dressage In Terms of Dance

How to turn dressage into a fluid art by developing collection.


Ride the Half Pass

Try this exercise to improve your aiding skills

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Isometric Strength in Dressage

Heath Blitz explains this important concept.

Credit: Credit: Jim Noetzel Peter and Zydeco Nights, a 6-year-old mare, compete at First Level in dressage and Novice level in eventing.

The Importance of Correct Upper-Body Position

Susanne von Dietze critiques Peter Wrzesinski riding at First Level.

Credit: Courtesy, Ashleigh Rauen Ashleigh Rauen rides Greta, her 6-year-old Hanoverian/Thoroughbred cross mare, in a lesson.

How to Create a Deep Seat

Courtney King-Dye explains while critiquing rider Ashley Rauen.

Credit: Courtesy, Karen Lenaghan-Parfitt Karen Lenaghan-Parfitt and Wally, her 15-year-old Hanoverian gelding, train at Third Level.

Adjusting Horse and Rider Balance

Heather Blitz critiques Karen Lenaghan-Parfitt

Credit: Courtesy, Kymberly Williams Kymberly Williams and her 6-year-old, registered American Quarter Horse mare, Baby, are hunters but cross-train in dressage.

Perfect Your Dressage Position

Heather Blitz critiques Kymberly Williams.

Credit: Courtesy, Aly Werth Aly Werth rides her 8-year-old, Morgan/draft-cross mare, Blue, at Training Level.

Take Control of Your Horse's Tempo

Heather Blitz critiques Aly Werth at Training Level.

The Clinic: Wendy Siegel

Wendy Siegel rides Ted,a 4-year-old draft-cross at Training Level.

Credit: Courtesy, Elise Elman

Ride with More Alignment for Better Balance

Biomechanics expert Susanne von Dietze critiques Elise Elman at Third Level.