FROM WALTER ZETTL'S NOTE ON DRESSAGE
"Occasionally someone will ask me, "What is dressage?" To this question I say, dressage is the correct gymnastizing, careful training and development of a horse... using the Training Scale. Dressage empowers a horse to become more athletic and beautiful in his natural movements, and to learn to carry a rider in a more healthy and balanced way. Classical dressage training will result in a horse that is stronger, more flexible and better able to use his whole body in a supple and powerful way, but at the same time will feel light and adjustable to the rider. It is the fundamental training needed for all varieties of the horse sports, and is also an Olympic sport in and of itself. A well trained dressage horse is a joy and privilege to ride.
Dressage training should never be limited to the dressage arena. Dressage should be taught in conjuntion with trail rides, small jumps, turn outs and free jumping. In the fall, fox hunting behind the hounds and ground work are wonderful additions to dressage training. Proper dressage training will create a sustainable and rewarding relationship between horse and rider.
Dressage is a journey - one to be enjoyed at every stage. A good dressage rider never skips a step in the horse's training in an effort to reach a specific goal, but instead relishes in the daily work, the daily discoveries and tiny bits of progress that the horse generously offers. The rider should ride to the horse's limit but never over so that the horse learns, but does not lose confidence in his rider, and therefor the horse gives his whole heart to his rider.
That is why I am, and always will be in love with dressage."
And we couldn't agree more!