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I am interested, what do I do now?

  • The best way to get started in Western Dressage locally is to organize a clinic and then let us help you organize a schooling show and campaign to get Western Dressage added to your club's dressage shows. You can contact W.D.U to receive a list of suggested clinicians. After you have generated some local interest, we would like to help you set up a schooling show in your area. Contact us for information. 

Are there Western Dressage shows or classes in my area?

  • Currently, Western Dressage classes are being offered at USEF sanctioned Morgan Horse Shows. These classes are open to all breeds in the Morgan shows that allow an 'open' class.  
  • Part of our mission is to encourage all breed shows to add the Western Dressage classes to their venue. 
  • Dressage clubs are beginning to add Western Dressage classes to their Dressage shows.
  • Dressage schooling shows are offering Western Dressage classes as well as a means of increasing attendance and fun.
  • The WDU is in the process of developing a Tool Box with information to help local horse shows hold Western Dressage classes and to assist other breeds in beginning the process of getting Western Dressage included into their rules.

Does Western Dressage have its own dressage tests?

There are currently tests available for Introductory and Training level Western Dressage. These tests are similar in requirement to classical dressage tests, but the gaits and terms are adjusted to suit the western horse. Tests were written by a USEF committee. They can be found via the USEF Morgan Western Dressage Tests page.


What are the rules for Western Dressage?

Judging standards are set in place by the USEF. These rules can be reviewed via the USEF Guidelines for Judging Western Dressage.



What are the tack requirements?

A Western Dressage riders tack should be clean and fit the horse. Use of western saddles is acceptable and welcomed. Use of any traditional western headstall is appropriate. Western attire, belt, long sleeve shirt with a collar, and western footwear.  Beginning in 2012, western style cavessons will be allowed, but must be adjusted loose enough to permit two fingers comfortably between the cavesson and the horse's nose. The preference is for horses to be shown in a snaffle type bit, but traditional curbs allowed in most western pleasure classes will be permitted. A protective helmet is highly recommended for all riders but mandatory for those riders under the age of 18.

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