September 2018 Newsletter

Exciting happenings at Western Dressage Association of America... Be sure to check it all out!
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A Letter From Your WDAA President

Dear WDAA Members,

As Western Dressage becomes ever more popular, WDAA is continuing to learn, adapt, and grow. We are excited to make some changes and add some services that we were too small to consider in the past.
WDAA is committed to providing our members the best-trained and most knowledgeable Western Dressage judges, so we have been aggressively training judges to become USEF Western Dressage judges for the past couple of years. WDAA wants to support judges who have gone through the expensive and time-consuming process to become USEF licensed Western Dressage judges. At the same time, we want to ensure the ability of show managers to find judges close to wherever Western Dressage shows are being planned, so they can offer Western Dressage shows in every area of the United States. Therefore, we have been methodically leveling (the same way we do when we train our horses) our way toward requiring USEF Western Dressage judges for all USEF-licensed and WDAA-recognized shows. It’s not quite time to go full Monty, but we are ready for the next steps in that direction. These steps involve modifications to USEF and WDAA recognized show rules:
1. USEF Regular and Local Competitions – Starting with the USEF 2019 competition year, which begins this December, only USEF-licensed Western Dressage judges will be allowed to judge USEF Regular and Local Competitions. Those competitions can no longer be judged by USEF-licensed Dressage judges, unless those judges are also licensed as USEF Western Dressage judges.
2. USEF Competition Lite –WDAA and USEF will meet to update requirements for Lite shows later this month. We will notify you of any changes that are made ASAP.
3. WDAA Recognized Shows – Starting with the 2019 show season,
USEF- licensed "r" Western Dressage judges will be eligible to judge Intro through Level 1 and all rail classes.

USEF-licensed “r” Dressage judges will be eligible to judge Intro through Level 1 but not rail classes.
USEF-licensed “R” Western Dressage judges will be eligible to judge tests at all levels and all rail classes.
USEF-licensed “R” or above Dressage judges will be eligible to judge tests at all levels but not rail classes.
*Beginning with the 2020 competition year, only USEF-licensed Western Dressage judges will be eligible to judge WDAA Recognized shows.
To support the changes above, WDAA will also modify and simplify the points system for the WDAA Horse Lifetime Points and Awards Program (WHLPAP).
Beginning with the 2019 show season, WHLPAP points will be awarded as follows:
½ points Shows judged by USEF-licensed Dressage judges
1x points Shows judged by USEF-licensed Western Dressage judges
2x points USEF licensed shows judged by USEF-licensed Western Dressage judges
3x points at the WDAA World Championship Show

I realize that growing pains are called “pains” for a reason and that changes can sometimes be difficult and take some time to get used to. WDAA is growing. It is getting better and better, one level at a time. I hope you will continue the journey with us as we continue to grow and keep sending us your ideas and answering our questionnaires to let us know how to best serve you. Because of your input, we come up with the best compromises and solutions.

Thank you for your continued support.

Cindy Butler, Your President
Western Dressage Association of America

See you soon at the 2018 Western Dressage World Championship Show!

Make sure to keep up with the festivities by watching the live feed at

Who needs a golf cart?
Golf Carts can be rented for the World Show for $250 for the week, please contact Show Manager Jon Haugen at 970-217-7820 or fill out THIS FORM.
Century Club for Western Dressage riders from The Dressage Foundation

WDAA is thrilled to promote the Century Club from The Dressage Foundation. We will be adding a "WDAA Honors" page to the WDAA Website to honor these great, dedicated horse and rider teams whose ages add up to 100 years. For much more information on this wonderful program and possible grant opportunities read on.
Several years ago, as interest in Western Dressage was growing around the country, The Dressage Foundation (TDF) started to receive requests for grants to help the growth of Western Dressage and the education of its riders.  At that time, TDF’s Board of Directors offered to support Western Dressage because they agreed that classical dressage principles are beneficial to all riders and horses. 
Since then, grants have been awarded to dressage clubs hosting events dedicated to Western Dressage.  For example, the Western Dressage Association of Oklahoma teamed up with the Oklahoma Dressage Society in 2012 to host a “Classical Dressage meets Western Dressage Clinic and Workshop.”  The event was awarded a $2,000 grant from TDF’s Violet Hopkins Fund.  Since Western Dressage was relatively new at that point, the goal of the event was to introduce Western riders to the correct basics of dressage.
Around that time, TDF also started welcoming Western Dressage riders into the Century Club.  To join the Club, the ages or horse and rider must add up to at least 100 years and they must ride any level test at a dressage show or event.  As of September 2018, ten Western Dressage riders from across the country have joined the Century Club!
  • 2012 – Cayce Black and Liquid Asset, Florida – Team #113
  • 2014 – John FitzGerald and Jacks Host, Hawaii – Team #161
  • 2015 – Thomas Faylor and Wildmoon, Michigan – Team #199
  • 2016 – Yan Ross and Merlin, Arizona – Team #232
  • 2016 – Suzanne Hall and April’s Cricket, Oregon – Team #246
  • 2016 – Harry Alban and MNK Made to Play, Michigan – Team #259
  • 2016 – Leanna Mae Bellinger and Fleeting Chance, Virginia – Team #263
  • 2017 – Isabel Surrey Saylor and Conclusions Shadow, Florida – Team #320
  • 2017 – Stella Gordon and Madoc Best Regards, Texas – Team #324
  • 2018 – JoAnne Percy and King’s Dutch Doll, Washington – Team #341

To learn more about TDF’s grants for educational events:

To learn more about TDF’s Century Club:
About The Dressage Foundation
The Dressage Foundation, located in Lincoln, Nebraska, is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit donor-driven organization that is dedicated to educating, supporting and advancing the sport of dressage.  The organization solicits contributions, appropriately allocates the donations and awards grants and scholarships to dressage riders, judges, instructors, breeders, high performance teams, nonprofit equestrian organizations and more.  For more information, please visit
The USEF Youth Sportsman's Award Applications are due!! This is a great opportunity to earn a free WDAA membership for 2019 and become the WDAA Nominee for the USEF Youth Sportsman's Award. Applications due now to [email protected] to earn your free WDAA membership. Let's show them what our Western Dressage Youth are all about!
2017 USEF Youth Sportsman's Award
As a result of WDAA submitting a nominee for the 2017 USEF Youth Sportsman's Award WDAA receives a grant from USEF to pass onto a worthy youth program. The most recent $1500 grant was presented to the WDA Florida Affiliate. WDAFL is grateful for the opportunity to produce an educational video promoting junior riders in the discipline of Western Dressage, made possible with a youth focused grant from the United States Equestrian Federation through the Western Dressage Association of America. WDAFL has obtained footage from the Florida Championships Show in November 2017 and WDAA shows at Fox Grove Farm earlier this spring. On September 9, the WDAFL production team will interview four junior riders who have competed at the Southeast Regional 4-H Horse Show in Perry, GA, WDAA shows throughout the state of Florida and the WDAFL Championship Show. WDAFL appreciates the funds to complete this important educational project and look forward to sharing the media soon.

Safe Sport FAQ
Safe Sport Training Frequently Asked Questions

From the US Equestrian Communications Department

Lexington, KY – The US Equestrian Federation (USEF) announced a rule change on Tuesday, August 28, 2018, requiring that, effective January 1, 2019, all USEF members 18 and over with an Adult Competing Membership must complete Safe Sport training in order to be eligible to participate in USEF activities, including competitions. Since that announcement, we are pleased to report that over 3,500 USEF members completed the Safe Sport training. To provide further guidance, below are a list of Frequently Asked Questions regarding the new rule change.  
Where can I locate the required Safe Sport training? How long does it take? 
The required Safe Sport Core Training is on the U.S. Center for SafeSport website. Instructions on how to set up an account and access the training are here. It will take approximately 90 minutes to complete and consists of three modules: Sexual Misconduct Awareness Education, Mandatory Reporting, and Emotional and Physical Misconduct. All three modules must be completed in order to satisfy the requirement.
Who is required to take the Safe Sport training? 
Any USEF member who is 18 years old and above and who has a USEF Adult Competing Membership is required to take the Safe Sport training, including amateurs, professionals, and owners who have an annual, three-year, or lifetime membership. The Safe Sport training requirement does not include USEF Fan Members.

Or, copy and paste the following URL into your browser:

2018 WDAA Honors Awards Dinner

Please plan on attending the 2018 WDAA Honors Awards Dinner on Thursday night Sept 27th at the Roper's Cantina. This fun and educational event is partially sponsored by a generous grant from the USEF Membership Grant received by WDAA. Please visit this link to register ASAP. We look forward to seeing you there!
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WDAA Website
WDAA Social Corral

Western Dressage Education!

Find all the WDAA Tests, Guides and lots of great reading materials in our Western Dressage Education Center!
Get More Info
Clinics & Shows
Looking for a Schooling Show or Clinic to brush up on your skills. Stop by the Events Calendar on the WDAA website where you will find lots of events happening all over the USA!
View Calendar

WDAA Social Corral

If you wish to be more informed about the Western Dressage movement, we do have a private Social Corral Facebook Group where members of the Western Dressage Association® of America can interact, discuss various topics, conceive new ideas and generally share all things Western Dressage, including people who are instructors, clinicians and even judges like yourself.
Join the Social Corral

Judges Education Program

The WDAA Western Dressage Judge’s Education Program is open to all licensed Dressage judges, Western, Breed judges and those starting out who want to learn about Western Dressage. This Judges Education Program offers training so that they can accurately evaluate horse rider combinations, score the tests and provide comments.

Learn More
Current Licensed WDAA Judges

Find A TTT Graduate

The Western Dressage Association® of America has a list of professionals that have graduated from the past few years of Train The Trainer Clinics. If you are looking for an instructor or trainer in your area..
Find A Graduate

WDAA General Store

Where You can purchase WDAA Customized Apparel in our Apparel Boutique as well as Books, DVDs and other educational material all about Western Dressage in our Products General Store.
Shop Now

Follow Us on Facebook

Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook for all of the latest Western Dressage updates from all over the US and Canada.

Find new WD groups, follow your favorite riders, find shows and clinics and connect up with Western Dressage friends in your neck of the woods.

Please Join our rapidly-growing online community...
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Why Be A WDAA Member?
Ever wondered what it means to be a WDAA member? Sure, you get access to the Social Corral, events, dressage tests, and tons of information on our website; you can participate in high points programs and receive our awesome newsletter each month, but what else?
Learn More

Breed Alliances


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About The Western Dressage Association® of America is a 501(c)3 educational non-profit organization focused on providing a model of horsemanship which optimizes the partnership of horse and rider for their mutual benefit.  The mission of the Western Dressage Association® is to honor the horse, to value the partnership between horse and rider and to celebrate the legacy of the American West which it focuses on through its offerings of educational opportunities and events to the equestrian community.

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