Have you ever heard of Dressage? If you haven't that's OK. Neither had we. Allyn Hoang saddles up and rides into an interview with Lisa Blackmon, Owner and Head Trainer at Black Star Sport Horses.
Dressage is a fancy (and French) way of saying, "Training of the Horse," according to Blackmon. And, not only is it taught by Lisa and her daughter Jessica Blackmon, but it is an Olympic Sport and has been since the early 1900's.
Some of the movements include Half-Passes, where the horse moves diagonally, but also forward at the same time. There are also Pirouettes, a 360 degree turn, usually at a canter, Flying Changes, where the horse changes leads every one, two or three steps and a Piaffe or Passage. A Piaffe is when the horse trots gracefully, in place. The Passage is a high trot while the horse is moving.
Blackmon says, "The key is to make it look like [the horse] is doing all of the work and not us." Horseback riding and dressage can be a very fun and relaxing sport for the whole family. Even at an early age you can ride for fun or competition. Lisa's daughter, Jessica Blackmon, competed for the first time at age four.