WDAA Rules revised for 2015

From the Western Dressage Association® of America:

"Our Rules incorporate elements of both Western and Dressage disciplines.  Their revision was a collaborative effort on the part of member feedback, evaluation of respected horse people and equine organizations, and edited by a team of our Advisory Board members championed by Anita Owen, FEI Olympic Dressage judge.

"Our resulting Rules are designed for use by judges and show managers, but also for riders of all experience levels.  These Rules are a wonderful educational tool with highlights that include detailed gait descriptions, movements and goals & objectives – all of which will help design a progressive learning and training program regardless of intent to show or ride in any other discipline.

"These newly revised WDAA Rules come into effect for the 2015 competition year.  In addition, the WDAA has developed a Western Dressage Trainers program Train the Trainers™ as well as continuing education programs for dressage judges and exhibitors in collaboration with our corporate partner Horseshow.com

"The new WDAA Western Dressage Tests are designed with progressive elements to showcase the developing skills of horse and rider.

"The Guidelines were written to assist judges when officiating in Western Dressage classes rather than Classical Dressage, and may be helpful to students and instructors of Western Dressage to understand better what the dressage judges will be looking for in the tests.

"Western Dressage is trained and shown in specific levels which build on each other and which reflect the development of the skills and abilities of both the horse and rider.  The tests ridden in shows are used as a measure of the correctness of the horse’s (and rider’s) schooling.  Collective marks are based on:

  • Gaits: the freedom and regularity of the horse’s movement

  • Impulsion: the horse’s desire to move forward, elasticity of steps, roundness

  • Submission: the horse’s attention and confidence, harmony with rider, lightness of movements, and acceptance of the bit

  • Rider’s position and seat: correctness and effect of the aids"

Revised WDAA Rules effective 1 January 2015

Judging Guidelines          Glossary of Terms


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