5 Ways to Support Dressage in the US

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It’s the sport you love – a beautiful dance between a human and a horse.  If you are a dressage enthusiast and want to ensure its continued success, here are a few ways you can support the future of the sport.

GMOS MAKE IT HAPPEN: At a USDF L program session with Axel Steiner (center) hosted by the California Dressage Society (USDF File Photo)

Join a GMO

USDF has over 100 Group Member Organizations (GMOs) across the country, each offering a wide array of their own benefits, as well as a USDF Group Membership and governance representation at the Board of Governors General Assembly where the business of the organization is conducted. GMOs are the lifeblood of USDF and your connection to your local dressage community. It is these clubs and individuals that truly move the sport forward.  Find a GMO near you here.

2017 Omaha World Cup Volunteer Nancy-Bryant (Sarah-Miller-MacMillan-Photography)

Volunteer (Locally)

Most GMOs or other equestrian clubs rely on the efforts of volunteers for their livelihoods. Volunteers are not only the backbone of these clubs, but also of USDF. USDF was built on the backs of GMOs and volunteers, and wouldn’t be the organization it is today without those individuals and their combined efforts. USDF’s Executive Board, Councils & Committees, and vote carrying delegates are ALL volunteering their time and expertise for the good of the sport, and valuable insight is always appreciated.

Donate to the Circle of Friends

The USDF Circle of Friends is comprised of members of the dressage community who generously make tax deductible donations to help fund the future of dressage in this country. All funds donated to the Circle of Friends go towards furthering USDF’s mission of providing education, recognizing achievements, and promoting dressage. Donating is easy. Anyone wishing to give can visit our secure online giving site, complete and return a Circle of Friends Donation Form, contact the office at donate@usdf.org or by phone at (859) 971-2277, or simply add your donation to your paper or online membership application!

Volunteers being recognized at the US Dressage Finals. Photo by Susan J. Stickle Photography. ©susanjstickle.com

Volunteer (Nationally)

There are many ways to get involved in volunteerism in the equestrian world and within the dressage community. One of those ways is to volunteer nationally. Each year approximately 100 volunteers, from all over, descend on the Kentucky Horse Park to take part in the US Dressage Finals presented by Adequan®. Known as ‘the centerline of champions’ the US Dressage Finals is the premier competition for adult amateur, open, and (now) junior/young rider competitors to showcase themselves and their mounts, and celebrate the culmination of their success from the season. Volunteering at the Finals is an experience unlike any other, and that is the reason so many choose to return year after year! To learn about volunteering at the US Dressage Finals, contact US Dressage Finals Volunteer Coordinator Kathy Grisolia, or join the US Dressage Finals Volunteer Facebook Group.

USDF Board of Governors assembly

Govern the Future

By getting involved in USDF governance, you will have the opportunity to determine the future of the organization, and in turn, the sport. There are many different ways to be involved in the USDF governance process. Individuals can be Group Member or Participating Member Delegates to the Board of Governors, carrying voting strength to influence organization decisions. Another way to participate is to be named to a USDF Committee. There are a variety of committees with a wide array of goals and objectives, so there is always a need for input. Since committee members are appointed by their respective chairs, the best way to start getting involved on that front would be to attend the Adequan/USDF Annual Convention® and participate in the many meetings and forums that take place. The more knowledge and familiarity of the workings of the organization one has, the more it makes them a desirable candidate for one of these coveted positions. For information on becoming a delegate or other governance opportunities that may be available, contact the USDF office.

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