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Dressage is described as ‘the art of riding a horse in a manner that develops obedience, flexibility, and balance.’ In dressage every single movement has to look effortless. In a dressage show, each rider performs their own round, in which they perform a series of movements. There is no jumping involved in dressage. What riders must do in such a round is written in a dressage test. The different levels of dressage Every country has nationwide levels of dressage. On Equestrifun we have chosen to pick the US dressage levels. This is mainly because UK dressage tests are not available without paying. A level is simply said: “how hard is a test?” These are the same in every country. They are the hardest levels around. Horse with 50 points or less are not allowed to enter these levels.

You are free to enter whichever level you like. For example, a beginner rider can jump straight into Third Level dressage. However, it is very strongly recommended that you work your way up, as dressage is a process of training. If you start with doing advanced tests, you will probably place last a lot or will not be able to understand the test.

A dressage arena: There are two types of arenas that are acceptable in dressage. These sides are the actual arena sizes; rails must be placed on the side. 19X59 arenas can be used for every dressage test. 19x39 for some, this will be noted on the test that you are using. Markers must be placed as in the pictures. 1 meter =1 block. Showgrounds have must two arenas of the same size. One for warm-up/practice and one for the show. The rail must be one block high or 0.5 block (slab) high.  Intro-Third level the riders may be supported by barriers placed on the rail, but otherwise barriers are not permitted.          Third level and up must have a little bit of sand next to arena to trot up in. What do I do in a show? So you got a proper horse? Time to get going! In a show, you will do a test. These tests are based on the level the show is on. The judge will specify which test you have to learn. Learn it thoroughly before starting the show!

Normal tests (Intro-fourth level): https://www.usdf.org/downloads/forms/index.asp?TypePass=Tests

FEI tests here https://inside.fei.org/fei/your-role/organisers/dressage/tests

~Movements and fundamentals~

Headset The right way to have the headset is slightly in front of the vertical. We will refer to the dressage headset with the word vertical. This means you will look at the upper edge of your saddle in Minecraft. Put your FOV to Quake Pro and press F5; that might make it easier. Movements * Free walk: tap forward key twice a second * Medium walk: spam forward key * Working Trot (Standing): hold w and tap s twice a second. * Working canter: hold the forward key and the sprint key. * Give and retake reins: Horse’s head should be lifted (you should look halfway down your horse’s neck, alike to the hunter headset) and swiftly be brought back to the vertical. * Stretching in trot: Horse’s head should be lifted (look at the middle of the neck) and kept there - like a ‘release of pressure.’ Once you have lowered back down to the vertical when the movement is finished. * Rein back: Back up by pressing the S key. Horse must take no less than 2 and no more than 6 steps backwards, unless noted otherwise. * Extended trot: The horse’s head should be raised very slightly above the vertical. The rider should hold the W key and sprint key for a 2 full seconds, then letting go of all of the keys for a split second, holding everything again. * Counter canter: The horse should be cantering while tilting slightly to the outside.

* Flying changes: Keep the horse on the diagonal. While riding, tilt left then right every one or two strides, unless stated otherwise. * Lengthening in the trot and canter: Hold W and and then press W 3 times really fast after every second in trot. In canter press W once instead of 3 times. * Walk-canter transitions: Make sure your walk is calm and collected. Tilt your horse’s head slightly to the inside before entering canter. Do not go to the trot first. * Collected walk/trot/canter: Perform the working gait but press S after every second very swiftly. At the same time, tilt the head to the left and right, like left right left right. * Walk pirouette: the horse should turn on the spot. * Canter pirouette: The horse’s head should be slightly above the vertical. The horse must ‘rear’ and turn at the same time, three times for half a circle six times for an entire circle. * Passage: The horse collects his trot and moves slowly forward in short bursts of ‘push power’ from the legs. Riders can achieve this by holding W for a second and a half, pressing the S key 4 or 5 times then repeating. * Piaffe: The horse collects their trot and trots on the spot. The rider presses A, followed by S, followed by D, followed by w. All 4 keys must be tapped fast  for the same period of time. * Salute: Way to greet the judge, go from the vertical to looking at the horses ears, smoothly to going to the vertical again whilst you left click the hand without the crop once. * Leg yield: Press W and A or W and D depending on where you need to go. * Leg yield along rail: Press W and A or W and D what rein you are on. * Shoulder-In: Same as leg yield along the rail just slightly more tilted towards the rail and press the button that take you towards the rail once every 2 seconds. * Travers: Tilt the horse’s head toward the rail * Renvers: Tilt the horse’s head away from the rail. * Half-pass: leg yield but slightly tilted.

~How do I judge dressage?~

You will give every movement a score. You first state the level and then the test (1 or 2 and so on) that the riders need to learn. Give the riders some time to study for the test before starting; this is like course walking. You can award a maximum of 10 points for each movement (see picture 2). Grab a sticky note and quickly write down a number after every movement. Aside from the points the rider can get for the movements, riders will also be able to get points on their clothing or grooming and/or overall balance or gaits. This are called collective marks. Please take this into account too! - 10 = excellent - 9 = very good - 8 = good - 7 = fairly good - 6 = satisfactory - 5 = marginal - 4 = insufficient - 3 = fairly bad - 2 = bad - 1 = very bad - 0 = not executed (an omission penalty) To calculate the rider’s final score, do: (scored points:total points)x100 = percentage.

If you’re not good with math, use this website click me! and pick “…. Is what percent of…”

~Clothing, Aids and Tack Rider~

Normal levels: Black Helmet (cap) - Black, white or navy Tunic - Light coloured pants (breeches) - Black shoes (Riding boots) and a crop (Optional). FEI levels: Black helmet (Top hat) - black or white. Tunic - White pants (breeches)- Black shoes (Riding boots). No crop! Make sure that this is actual armour from the tailory and not just your skin! Horse: Saddle and preferably a saddle pad (Matchy matchy set; diamond horse armour). In all levels above first level a saddle pad is required!

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