We are huge bookworms! We believe you can always learn something new, so every month we will dedicate a review (and hopefully recommendation) to an equestrian-related book. This month we read Master Dressage by Peter Dove; you can check out his website too.
First things first, we highly recommend this book, it was a great and fairly quick read! No matter your discipline, dressage is such a great foundation for training your horse. That being said, it is an awesome book for the lower level dressage rider; geared specifically towards those brand new to dressage up to US Equestrian Federation/US Dressage Federation (USEF/USDF) 2nd Level -- if you need to reference what the equivalent lower levels (i.e. non-FEI) are for Europe, this is the best link we've found.
Master Dressage truly provided a usable strategy for training yourself and your horse in order to be a better competitor at dressage; and who doesn't want to be a better rider and competitor? Mr. Dove provides you with a very logical, straightforward approach for measurable, and very gratifying, improvement -- both at home and in the show ring. We particularly loved his statement, "You and you horse are on the same team. It should never degenerate into "[my horse] versus me"."
The strategy he presents is built on five key areas: accuracy, fluidity, understanding, practice, and review. There is a chapter dedicated to each one, and they are much like the sections in the Training Pyramid in that they are their own individual section but they feed into each other. We found these five key areas to be tangible, well written and explained, and therefore executable; exercises were clearly outlined and great visualizations were provided.
Mr. Dove's system will help set you up for success! And the best part is, he is very active with all his readers through his website, his Facebook page and Twitter account. So get his book, and follow him on social media to improve your dressage!
Live. Love. Horses.