Our Calgary, Alberta area is rich in equine history

Kim Cox
Kim Cox

Dressage is my sport because of  its precision and harmony between the horse and rider.

This sport of equine classical ballet, with all the rhythm, balance, strength and graceful communication, makes the presentation appear effortless and enhances the appearance of the horse.

Patience and persistence are mantras of Dressage as training and sport.  Dressage is a discipline based on historical traditions of elite equestrian training in classical horsemanship.

Dressage training, attire, equipment, the right coach, how to approach lessons, the training scale, clinics and clinicians, etiquette, understanding Dressage tests and how to ride them, keeping a training log, judging criteria and showing, Dressage NGOs, and what to look for in an Equine Dressage partner are all part and parcel of this site.

Taking the action to train in Dressage will help you to increase your riding awarness and  improve communication with your horse regardless if you intend to enter a Dressage show.

Dressage has become my  journey, and offers the opportunity for a  long term partnership between you and your horse.  You both improve through correct training.

Benefits of Dressage training for the rider include: core strength, cardio-vascular training, isometric training, balance and fine motor skills.  (You can include flexibility is you mount several very tall  horses every day.)

Benefits of Dressage training for your horse include: more rhythmic gaits, more flexiblity, more “throughness” or becoming more submissive to the aids, and increases in strength to “carry”  himself .

Enjoy this site, visit often and ask questions, we learn from each other.

Thoughts on Performance

Riding the Diagonal LIne
Calgary Dressage

1. We were physically well prepared for our tests.

2. Mental toughness is an area I need to keep working on.
3. I need to practice at “speed”.
4. I need to keep in mind the “set up” for the required transitions.
5. Focus, for me, is a big requirement for showing dressage.
6. I’ll never underestimate the value of having a groom.
7. I learned to practice tests at home, but don’t drill.
8. I did accomplish a great deal in my warm-ups.
9. I will work on making my tests be as good as the warm-ups.
10. I will always have fun and learn at shows.
Kudos to PADA for hosting a brillliant Championship this year. 
                                                              Thanks for the great weather.

Calgary Area Dressage Stables and Trainers List:

black saddle
Calgary Dressage

The most common request I receive is for a list of Calgary Area barns and instructors that coach Dressage.

I know of the following stables that support Dressage training:  Black Whiskey Ranch, Bri-mel Farms, Cadence Stables, Cara Stables, Carousel Stables, Diamond Willow, Evergreen Equestrian, Eversfield Equestrian, Fox Hollow Equestrian, Ironhill Equestrian Centre, Kestrel Ridge Farms, Moose Hill Ranch, Reverance Stables, Trakehner Glen, Twin Valley, Westridge, Willowgrove.

If you can help complete the Calgary Area Dressage Listings please contact me through comments on this site.  There is no cost to list your barn or trainer.  It will help those new to the sport to have a list of Dressage friendly barns in the Calgary area.

Dressagers around Airdrie and south of High River, please let me know where you are, so you can be included.

Thanks so very much for your support of our sport.


Calgary Dressage Freestyle Music & Choreography….

Andersons centerline
Freestyles are FUN

Over 450 musical selections and growing.  Kur music and choreography.

Freestyles are FUN:

Fantastic way to dance with your horse….Unanimously appealling…Now available from Calgary Dressage

Contact: Kim Cox through  comments on the Calgary Dressage website.

Check the Freestyle page for a link to Free Calgary Dressage Music


“Expanding the reach of the Calgary Dressage community”

Well Turned Out
Dressage training supports all disciplines

This is a place for all things dressage. 

The foundation of  our sport is in the classical training of horses.  Horses in the military, were trained to demonstrate suppleness and obedience for maneuvers on the battlefield. Later the focus of the training was to demonstrate the horse and rider’s talents during performances for royalty or military parades.

Dressage training of horses forms the basis of all equestrian pursuits.  This is true for the rider as well as her horse.  Dressage training creates the foundation for allowing the horse to be a willing partner.   The horse, in Dressage, is not coerced into action, but submits to the rider’s aids readily.  The best Dressage riding appears effortless and the horse seems to be responding to imperceptable commands.

A welll ridden Dressage test will flow smoothly.  The rider looks like she is doing very little, and required figures within the test are ridden with dead accuracy and the horse is focused, engaged and disciplined.  This gives our sport the look of effortlessness. 

 It can be hard work, making a 700kg warmblood look smooth, instantly responsive, light and supple, loose and forward during an hour lesson. Most riders will agree that after a training session, we do actually work up a sweat.

We may be a small dressage community in Calgary, but we are fortunate to have many good coaches, trainers and barns that embrace our sport.  There has been a movement of late within the eventing and show-jumping communities to come back to dressage training to learn from us the ways to balance, engage and get the half-halt through.  While talking with riders of those disciplines, they say that the jumping courses are getting more technical all the time.  The height of jumping courses are maximized, so it seems course designers are adding more difficulty with distances between the jumps, adding tighter turns and the like.  Dressage training can help school the horses in accepting the half-halt between fences to make a critical  distance work. Certainly a well balanced horse should be able to take a jump rounder than one which is on the forehand.  I have seen collected work at the canter improve tight turns in a jumper.

This being said we don’t experience our sport in a vaccume.  We as Dressage enthusiast have a lot to share with other disciplines.  I hope this site offers opportunities for learning, sharing and expanding the reach of the Calgary Dressage community.