USDF Announces New High School Dressage Program

For Immediate Release
Thursday, February 10, 2005

The United States Dressage Federation is pleased to announce the release of the new High School Dressage Program and the accompanying High School Dressage Club Guidelines. These guidelines will provide a structure for parents and groups seeking recognition for their high-school students' achievements in the sport of dressage. Integral to the success of this program is the support and sponsorship of local Group Member Organizations (GMO) of the United States Dressage Federation.

Just as with other sports recognized in high schools, athletic ability, dedication, and commitment are required of our young dressage riders. Dressage, however, is not usually recognized through high school athletic-achievement awards, pins, or letters. It is also difficult for the small numbers of dressage riders in each school to fulfill the requirements necessary to be a recognized high school club activity or high school athletic activity. There may also be a lack of understanding of and appreciation for students' achievements in dressage, and a myriad of local and state requirements that may need to be met in order for high school recognition.

To help fill this void, the USDF High School Dressage Club Guidelines provide information and tools for families who wish to request high school recognition for their students' achievements in dressage. The guidelines advise riders and parents on how to approach school administrators, provide examples of competition-approval forms that the high school can implement, and outline how best to implement a regional high school dressage program. The guidelines also suggest ways that parents can work with USDF Group Member Organizations (GMOs) to determine realistic program requirements within their region, and ways to pair a high school with a supporting GMO so that school administrators understand that their dressage competitors will have a support structure that includes the same type of monitoring, training, and coaching as other recognized team activities, such as basketball or soccer teams.

With this new program, riders may earn high-school athletic achievement awards through involvement and activities sponsored by their supporting GMO. Dressage lettering pins will be available through USDF for those students who qualify through their school for their athletic achievement.

Founded in 1973, the United States Dressage Federation is a nonprofit membership organization dedicated to education, recognition of achievement, and promotion of dressage. For more information about USDF membership or programs, visit, email, or call (859) 971-2277.