Buying a dressage horse? 10 tips for a happy start to your new relationship 


Start slow and Be patient. Don’t ask for too much too soon, especially when working with a young horse.

Take time to get to know your new horse.  Establish a good relationship with and to get to know their personality, strengths and weaknesses.

Start at the beginning.  Initially go right back to the basics and establish your own way of going with your new horse.  Start with bending and riding a straight line; you will find it easier later on to ride the more advanced moves accurately

Keep your horse interested.  Don’t endlessly go round in circles at the same pace use transitions.  It’s a good way to calm a hot horse and excellent for helping a lazy horse focus on the job and both types become more responsive to the leg.

Build in down time during your riding sessions.  Allow your horse to stretch and unwind and stretch his muscles between exercises.

Build a varied routine into your training schedule.  Hack out and jump  to keep your horse interested and help him (and you) keep a fresh outlook.

Even if you have just bought yourself a school master start by going to low key events and taking your time to get to know your horse under pressure. And let him understand the difference in the way you ride in competition mode.

Be prepared for lots of hard work, even with established horses a proper working relationship takes time to grow. Perfecting your moves will not come over night for either you or your horse

Practice, practice, practice

And most importantly ‘Remember to have fun’ is key to enjoying your new purchase.