Are Quarter Horses Good For Dressage

David Lawrence
• Thursday, 17 December, 2020
• 9 min read

The American Quarter Horse's capability as a lower level dressage mount has long been praised. Sandra Perez-Meseroll has shown in almost every aspect of the Quarter Horse industry, from halter to western pleasure.

dressage horse western quarter lessons classical learns sorrel joan
(Source: www.jmdressage.com)


Since he had a successful career in the Western world learning a variety of skills, including reining spins and collection, he adapted to dressage easily. Mr Jet Time Leo, another successful Quarter Horse, is shown by Pamela Harper.

Harper recently gave Jet to her daughters (Samantha and Rachel) and is now riding a 6-year-old Quarter Horse mare named Little Quincy Candy. Mary Butler has been riding her Appendix Quarter Horse gelding, RC Just Too Clever, for seven years and has done jumping, western, driving and dressage with him.

Butler said, “I learned that we already have the tools we need to make our horses better such as transitions between and within gaits, lateral movements and correct body position.” Also, for Butler, the movements like leg yield and shoulder in have helped to strengthen her horse's hindquarters and improve his self-carriage.

She said, “Nothing is more inspiring to watch than a horse moving correctly in his gaits with a harmonizing rider aboard!” “By learning how to put my horse in balance, he is so much more fun to ride and compete successfully,” said Hope.

“My horse's longevity and soundness problems have been improved because of riding him correctly and knowing how to condition him for the work he needs to do.” Her owner, Julie Cain, has made it her goal to build a better rapport and communication with her horse.

dressage horse quarter breeds
(Source: www.pinterest.com)

All the women share a common bond felt by many--the adoration and respect for their talented dressage partner, the Quarter Horse. Here is a picture of Patrick Marley and his Quarter Horse mare, Honey Bright Dream.

The pair earned the Gold Medal in their first season at Grand Prix. Honey is an 11-year-old, 15 hand, Quarter horse mare, who was purchased “green broke” in 2003.

Patrick trailers Honey to weekly lessons at North Star Training Center, and participates in clinics. When you talk about what breeds can do upper level dressage, you make broad generalizations and think about what traits most of those horses possess.

The Aqua permits the infusion of other bloodlines so long as they conform to the breed's standards. Barns are full of fancy warm bloods that top out at second level, either because they find collected work distasteful or because they lack the right trainer to get them there.

There is a lot of individual variation in the conformation of a quarter horse, depending on what discipline they compete in. An important quality to look for in an upper level dressage horse (assuming you can pick just one) is an uphill frame to facilitate collection.

horse quarter horses breeds
(Source: www.horseforum.com)

Conclusion When all's said and done, I see a lot of quarter horses competing in the lower levels, where most of us are at in our riding anyway. They may not all be huge movers, but they can really shine in areas like obedience/submission, relaxation, elasticity, acceptance of the bit, etc.

Even those not destined for Grand Prix can be star mounts, especially for the younger kids/juniors getting started or the adult beginner rider. Quarter horses are extremely popular, and they are one of the most common horses across the world.

The ability to jump well depends more on how the horse is trained than the genetics of the breed. A good jumper typically needs to be 65 inches in height and Quarter horses generally fit that criterion.

Most show jumpers are warm bloods but there are plenty of quarter horses as well that do really well in the best competitions all over the world. Quarter horses unknown to have a very strong psyche and the ability to learn a lot of stuff in a short period of time.

The reason is that some horses will get cold feet too often and abandon the jump just before they reach the obstacle. They need to form a strong bond and have a high level of cooperation.

quarter horse dressage montana training
(Source: www.youtube.com)

In order for that to happen, we need a horse with a strong psyche as well as a good rider to train it. The strong hind legs give the horse a world-class jump with lots of height and speed.

It takes a special technique and the horse needs to be flexible in order to bend the legs during the jump. They like to keep going for many hours at a time, and they are willing to do so when there’s a good connection between the master and the horse.

It will take a lot of hard work and many hours to get that horse in shape physically as well as mentally. So you need a horse with a good mental and stable mind and the willingness to train.

Some horse breeds are not too fond of repeating the same tasks all over again until they master the skill completely. But with the quarter horse to have a very good starting point and a high chance of success.

You as a jumper needs to be in control and the horse should learn that it must jump when you go for the obstacle at full speed. Otherwise, you may end up injured and the horse itself can also get hurt when it decides to stop at high speed.

dressage mare quarter horse horsezone
(Source: horsezone.com.au)

The quarter horses have shown multiple times that they can be fearless and that they will continue when the rider leads the way. Horses can react to colors, sounds, and new surroundings but you need to be sure that your jumper will pull through when you two set your mind on winning.

As with many other things in life, there are certain thresholds a horse need to measure up to in order to become good at jumping. We need a horse with the right physic and without any genetic disadvantages like short legs or too heavy bodies.

We have covered these thresholds in the article so far, and the quarter horses certainly meet these criteria in order to become a good jumper. Quarter horses are typically between 56 and 65 inches tall (14-16 hands or 142-163 cm.).

You probably wouldn’t want a horse that’s smaller than 65 inches (16 hands or 162 cm) tall. When they become smaller than this they will often have a hard time jumping as high as the other bigger horses in the game.

With over 60 million horses in the world, only a few are uniquely suited to be successful at dressage. Originally, dressage was a skill developed for the battlefield when horses needed to be able to move in tight, confined spaces and respond immediately to the soldier’s command.

dressage horses horse breed traditional rocking level non upper colors training
(Source: www.horsenation.com)

The stud book for the Westphalia horse has strict requirements to ensure that only the highest quality stallions are used as sires. Because of consistently good breeding, Westphalia horses have constantly shown exceptional performance at international and Olympic competitions.

Rembrandt is one of the most famous Westphalia dressage horses having earned a gold medal at both the 1988 and 1992 Olympics and even had a Breyer made after him! Commonly seen in the jumping ring, the Holstein er also makes an excellent dressage mount.

They are also perfect for sporting activities due to their long strides and extraordinary jumping ability. They are a valuable horse breed with long legs, smooth towline and expressive heads.

The Dutch Warm blood is famous for possessing deep, full chests, muscular necks as well as powerful legs and hindquarters. Gorgeous long manes and flowing tails are one of the hallmark characteristics of the Andalusian horse.

Aside from their noticeably good looks, Andalusian horses actually have several qualities that make them excellent dressage horses. The Andalusian horses have a very strong and muscular back as well as powerful hindquarters giving them a harmonic and rhythmic swiftness.

horse quarter roan bay gelding english jumping safe
(Source: www.equinenow.com)

Their heads have a resemblance with those of Andalusian horses but have shorter necks and generally have a more solid look. They include; the Spanish horses which have well-proportioned bodies, clean, refined heads, wide foreheads and straight or slightly convex facial profiles.

Next, the Tiger Mustangs which have deep chests, short backs, are compact, well-muscled and most of them are dun. Finally, the Colonial Spanish Horses which are generally small, have fine muzzles, narrow but deep chests, sharp withers, and sloped groups.

Even though they are wild, Mustangs can be surprisingly excellent in dressage when adopted and given proper training. Dressage is such a thrilling experience and the most interesting part of it all is seeing the horse you trained standing out in a competition.

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quarter horses horse dressage western years american mare cute
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