Clementine Disproves the Conventional Wisdom.

If you want to ride in the discipline of Dressage you must have a Warmblood horse. That is the conventional wisdom.  Why? Well, the breeders of Warmblood horses have specifically bred them to be suitable for the discipline they will be working in. So there are horses that have bloodlines that are specific to dressage. These bloodlines produce horses with the  right conformation, body type, movement and temperament for this discipline.

But do you have to have a Warmblood?  Well ,if you are a professional rider and aiming for the Olympics, World Equestrian Games , Pan American Games or other big championships at the international level then, yes, you probably do need a Warmblood  Because you will need a horse that is purpose built for the rigors of the advanced movements and the judges will be looking for the very expressive gaits that these horses have. But what about an amateur rider who wants to learn dressage and maybe go to some shows but not the advanced levels?

Those riders do not need a Warmblood.  Everybody does not need a Warmblood horse. I have seen, time and again, that people go out and buy a big , bold, beautiful Warmblood and they find they cannot ride that much horse. They loose confidence and they loose the enjoyment of riding.  Here’s what an amateur who is starting out in dressage needs. They need a Clementine.


Isn’t she beautiful? Clementine is a Shire horse. She is currently being trained in basic dressage. Once her training is finished her owner will have a wonderful horse to ride and to compete with at the lower levels.


Clementine  has a lovely temperament and good basic gaits. Her owner will find she is reliable, trustworthy and a lot of fun.  Clementine may not advance to the international levels of the Prix St. George or Grand Prix and be competitive at those levels but in the real world not every rider needs an internationally competitive horse. Those horses can be tricky to ride and highly strung.

What every rider needs is a horse that they can trust. A horse that will look after them. A horse that is suitable for their level of riding.  So the “conventional wisdom’ that you can’t do dressage without a Warmblood is just not correct.

The barn that I am in here in Florida has Lusitano stallions, Warmbloods and Thoroughbreds.  But who is the best loved horse? That would be Clementine. She gets the most love, attention and compliments of any horse in the barn. And so she should!


18 Comments Add yours

  1. Love this! I have a Quarterhorse gelding and we are learning the ropes together! He is talented and good natured and possibly capable of higher levels but it is all about the journey and whether or not we get to the higher levels doesn’t concern me as much as if we are both happy learning and competing! If he isn’t we will switch things up and go a different route! I also have a 2 year old Andalusian cross filly that I will hopefully be training just for dressage and we will see how far we can go! She is a happy, smart and talented girl so it will be fun to see how her training progresses! I don’t have any international goals, mainly local shows and the training that goes into it!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. anne leueen says:

      This sounds wonderful. My daughter’s first horse was an appendix qtr horse and she was a perfect first horse. She took my daughter to the agricultural fairs and was not upset when the ferris wheel started up next to the ring. I think you have a great attitude to your riding and I wish you all the best with both of your horses.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thank you! They are my world!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Jen says:

    She is so beautiful!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. anne leueen says:

      Yes she is. Thank you.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. anne leueen says:

      Thank you I’m glad youenjoyed the post.


  3. Avery says:

    Oh she is too cute for words!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Cheri says:

    She is a beauty. I now have O my darling, O my darling O my darling Clementine in my head! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Eliza says:

    Oh I love this! We have a boarder Clementine. An oversized puppy. Beautiful photos!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      This Clementie is a real lady. Very polite. She was a joy to photograph even on a very windy blustery day. Glad you enjoyed!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Britta says:

    You may want to do another vote count and see where Queen Lola comes in the ranking … but I wholeheartedly agree with your other views and statements !

    Liked by 1 person

    1. anne leueen says:

      Well I was just referring to the end of the barn where I am but Queen Lola certainly has admirers as well! Thanks for stopping by.


    1. anne leueen says:

      She is and she is a sweetheart as well.

      Liked by 1 person

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