Riding Disciplines

Here are explanations of the various riding disciplines such as dressage, jumping, eventing, equitation,and hunters. You can learn these at Mountain Meadow Equestrian Center.

Dressage

( means "training" in French) The art of riding and training a horse that developes obedience, flexibility and balance. Competitive dressage has the goal of showing the horse carrying out, on request, the natural movements that it performs without thinking while running loose.

Show Jumpers

Show jumping comprises a timed event judged on the ability of the horse and rider to jump over a series of obstacles, in a given order and with the fewest refusals or knockdowns of portions of the obstacles.

Show Hunters

Hunt seat or hunter classes judge the movement and the form of horses suitable for work over fences. A typical show hunter division would include classes over fences as well as "hunter under saddle" or "flat" classes (sometimes called "hack" classes) in which the horse is judged on its performance, manners and movement without having to jump. The over fences classes in show hunter competition are judged on the form of the horse, its manners and the smoothness of the courses ridden.

Equitation

Also called the seat and hands or horsemanship, refers to events where the rider is judged on form, style and ability.

Western

Western riding evolved from the cattle-working and warfare traditions brought to the Americas by the Spanish Conquistadors, and both equipment and riding style evolved to meet the working needs of the cowboy on ranches in the American west. The most noticeable feature of western style riding is in the saddle which has a substantial tree that provides greater support for the rider when working long hours in the saddle. Though the differences between English and Western riding appear dramatic, there are more similarities than most people think. Both styles require riders to have a solid seat, with the hips and shoulders balanced over the feet, with hand independent of the seat so as to avoid disturbing the balance of the horse and interfering with its performance.

Field Hunters

Is a type of horse used in the hunt field for foxhunting. It may be any breed, but should possess stamina, a level head and bravery. In the United states it is a sport that has evolved as to not catch a fox but to get a good look at one.

3 Day Eventing

Also called combined training, horse trials, puts together the obedience of dressage with the athletic ability of show jumping, the fitness demands of the cross-country jumping phase. In the last-named, the horses jump over fixed obstacles, such as logs, stone walls, banks, ditches, and water, trying to finish the course under the "optimum time".

Pleasure

No matter what style of riding you do we all like to spend time with our horses and enjoy riding. Not all riders compete and many just enjoy the many benefits of riding such as being outdoors, getting exercise and enjoying the companionship of our horses and friends.

Trail Riding

Riding a horse for pleasure over natural terrain such as through the woods and meadow and over creeks. A great way to see nature and spend time with your friends just for the fun of it.

Endurance

It is a horse race against the clock over natural terrain. The winner is the first horse and rider to cross the finish line and pass the final vet check. Races can be as long as 100 miles.