Amelia Newcomb
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Amelia Newcomb

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About Amelia Newcomb

Amelia Newcomb is a USDF Gold medalist, a member of the prestigious USEF Dressage Development Program, and recipient of the Carol Lavell Prize from the Dressage Foundation. Based in Somis, California, she incorporates complete dressage training from starting the young horse through the FEI levels. Amelia works to develop a trusting and confident relationship between horse and rider. Her approach incorporates all aspects of horsemanship from basic groundwork to advanced dressage movements. The emphasis is always on the foundation with the basic trust, understanding, and relaxation for both horse and rider to create a harmonious partnership. Amelia's mantra has always been "Dressage for All," which is evident in both her in person and online coaching. With a successful YouTube video library of hundreds of free educational videos, over 135,000 subscribers (and counting!), and thousands of students enrolled in her online USDF accredited courses, it is clear that Amelia has a passion for teaching and dressage! "I have been blessed with many great teachers in my career and I hope to help each and every one of my students develop a connection and solid relationship with their horses." Learn more about Amelia on her website (www.amelianewcombdressage.com) or discover her free educational videos on her YouTube channel "Amelia Newcomb Dressage."

Latest Articles Written

Amelia Newcomb’s 5 Tips for Nailing Your Dressage Test

Getting ready to head to a show soon? In this video, I have five tips to help you get a new personal best dressage score at your next event! I know, I know, jumping is way more fun…but the dressage portion of the event is just as important as your show jumping and cross-country phases. Oftentimes, the judges will determine the winner of the whole event by the rider’s dressage score. Plus, practicing your flatwork and dressage principles will help you do better in your other jumping events as well.

Though I am mainly a dressage rider, I do have students who are eventers, and so I have compiled these top five tips specifically based on the common themes that I observe. Here are my top five tips to help you improve your eventing dressage scores:

Steady Tempo

One common thing that I see eventers doing is rushing through their tests and riding over tempo or with an inconsistent tempo. However, rushing your horse can cause them to be tense, inconsistent in the contact, and run on the forehand. In your test, remember that you can relax and take your time. Practice counting your horse’s stride. Breathe, relax, and go for a steady and consistent tempo as you ride through your test.

Ride Accurately

Riding letter to letter is super important. Judges like to see that you have correct geometry and are riding accurately throughout your test, as this indicates that your horse is on your aids. Remember to use your corners, and ride each figure letter to letter.

Practice Your Walk

Most of the time, the walk is a coefficient in your dressage test, which means that your score in the walk will count for double points. Practicing your walk and getting a nice, relaxed, and active walk can really help improve your test scores. Plus, practicing your walk is a great way to give your horse a break, and help them relax. Focus on getting a consistent rhythm, with your horse over-striding and stretching down into the contact.

Centerlines and Halts

Your centerline and halt in your test is your first and last impression to the judge. Therefore, it is a great thing to practice! It is super common for horses to get tense and nervous during this movement because they feel restrained, so I recommend first getting your trot-walk transitions down, and then practicing a few walk-halt transitions. Try practicing your walk-halt transitions along the rail first, and really focus on getting your horse to halt through your seat; this will help them halt square and round.

Breathe, Smile, and Have Fun!

Something that I think we all can forget when we are at a show is to just breathe, smile, and have fun with our horses. At the end of the day, we love our horses and we went to the show to have fun and enjoy them! Don’t forget to pet them, reward them, and say “Good job!”!

I hope that these five tips help you at your next show. You can also use the video above, where I go into more detail and demonstrate each tip. Let me know in the comments below what your favorite tip was! A big thank you to Eventing Nation for collaborating with me to help make this video possible.

Happy Riding!
Amelia

P.S. Want more help with your canter? Check out my FREE Canter PDF mini-course to help! Download the course here.

Amelia Newcomb is a USDF Gold medalist, a member of the prestigious USEF Dressage Development Program, and recipient of the Carol Lavell Prize from the Dressage Foundation. Based in Somis, California, she incorporates complete dressage training from starting the young horse through the FEI levels.

Amelia works to develop a trusting and confident relationship between horse and rider. Her approach incorporates all aspects of horsemanship from basic groundwork to advanced dressage movements. The emphasis is always on the foundation with the basic trust, understanding, and relaxation for both horse and rider to create a harmonious partnership.

Amelia’s mantra has always been “Dressage for All,” which is evident in both her in person and online coaching. With a successful YouTube video library of hundreds of free educational videos, over 135,000 subscribers (and counting!), and thousands of students enrolled in her online USDF accredited courses, it is clear that Amelia has a passion for teaching and dressage! “I have been blessed with many great teachers in my career and I hope to help each and every one of my students develop a connection and solid relationship with their horses.”

Learn more about Amelia on her website or discover her free educational videos on her YouTube channel “Amelia Newcomb Dressage.”

Read more tips from Amelia on EN here.

Amelia Newcomb: How to Up Your Score in USEF Training Test B

If you’re an eventer, you may enjoy the jumping phases more than dressage phase, but practicing your dressage test and riding it well can make all the difference in your overall placing. It’s super common that the Dressage test scores decide the end placing.

In this video, I will be riding through the USEF Training Test B (you can also see my demo and tips for Training Test B here). As I’m riding this test, I have a drone camera on me as well as a camera head-on, and I’ll be talking about what the judges are looking for, and commenting on what you should be focusing on as the rider.

Hopefully, this video gives you an idea of what to expect in an USEF Training Level Dressage test and how you can ride this test a little better!

Thank you to Eventing Nation for collaborating with me for this video. If you would like more help with riding your test figures accurately, check out this video:

Happy Riding!
Amelia

P.S. Want more help with your canter? Check out my FREE Canter PDF mini-course to help! Download the course here.

Amelia Newcomb is a USDF Gold medalist, a member of the prestigious USEF Dressage Development Program, and recipient of the Carol Lavell Prize from the Dressage Foundation. Based in Somis, California, she incorporates complete dressage training from starting the young horse through the FEI levels.

Amelia works to develop a trusting and confident relationship between horse and rider. Her approach incorporates all aspects of horsemanship from basic groundwork to advanced dressage movements. The emphasis is always on the foundation with the basic trust, understanding, and relaxation for both horse and rider to create a harmonious partnership.

Amelia’s mantra has always been “Dressage for All,” which is evident in both her in person and online coaching. With a successful YouTube video library of hundreds of free educational videos, over 135,000 subscribers (and counting!), and thousands of students enrolled in her online USDF accredited courses, it is clear that Amelia has a passion for teaching and dressage! “I have been blessed with many great teachers in my career and I hope to help each and every one of my students develop a connection and solid relationship with their horses.”

Learn more about Amelia on her website or discover her free educational videos on her YouTube channel “Amelia Newcomb Dressage.”

Read more tips from Amelia on EN here.

Amelia Newcomb: Fine Tuning USEF Training Test A

Getting excited about the season ahead? I bet you’re looking forward to the cross-country and show jumping phases, but did you know you can get a better score by riding your dressage test well?

The dressage phase may not be as fun as the jumping events, but practicing your dressage test and riding it well can make all the difference. The judges impression and results from dressage can be the score you finish on, so riding a good dressage test could be what makes the difference in your end result!

Though I am mainly a dressage rider, in this video, I will be riding the USEF Training Test A. Complete with drone footage as well as a camera front-on, you will be able to watch me ride each figure as I talk about what the judges are looking for and comment on what you should be focusing on as the rider.

Hopefully, this video helps give you a picture of what to expect in a USEF Training level test, and the best way to ride it! A big thank you to Eventing Nation for collaborating on this video with me.

Happy Riding!
Amelia

P.S. Want more help with your canter? Check out my FREE Canter PDF mini-course to help! Download the course here.

Amelia Newcomb is a USDF Gold medalist, a member of the prestigious USEF Dressage Development Program, and recipient of the Carol Lavell Prize from the Dressage Foundation. Based in Somis, California, she incorporates complete dressage training from starting the young horse through the FEI levels.

Amelia works to develop a trusting and confident relationship between horse and rider. Her approach incorporates all aspects of horsemanship from basic groundwork to advanced dressage movements. The emphasis is always on the foundation with the basic trust, understanding, and relaxation for both horse and rider to create a harmonious partnership.
Amelia’s mantra has always been “Dressage for All,” which is evident in both her in person and online coaching. With a successful YouTube video library of hundreds of free educational videos, over 135,000 subscribers (and counting!), and thousands of students enrolled in her online USDF accredited courses, it is clear that Amelia has a passion for teaching and dressage! “I have been blessed with many great teachers in my career and I hope to help each and every one of my students develop a connection and solid relationship with their horses.”

Learn more about Amelia on her website or discover her free educational videos on her YouTube channel “Amelia Newcomb Dressage.”

Read more tips from Amelia on EN here.

Amelia Newcomb: Making the Most of Your Short Court Dressage Test

In this latest video, we will be talking about geometry in the short dressage court. Sometimes with the elementary tests and especially three-day events, you may ride your test in a 20m x 40m arena (short court) instead of the standard 20m x 60m (large court or full side court). When you ride a test, it’s super important that you ride each movement and figure accurately (you will make the judge very happy!).

In this video, I’m riding inside a short court and talking about how to ride your tests accurately in a smaller court:

The dressage judges are super picky about the geometry in a test, as riding accurate geometry is what shows that your horse is on the aids. But riding accurate geometry can be tricky, especially in a short court. As the coach of several eventing students, I commonly see eventers struggle with:

Circles

Depending on whether you are riding your circle at one of the ends (A or C) or if you’re riding a circle in the middle of the arena (B or E) your geometry will change slightly in the different courts. I commonly see riders make big oval shapes for their circles, especially if they are in a short court, so it’s super helpful if you can look at your test before the show, study the geometry, know what touch points you’ll need for your circles, and practice riding them accurately.

Using the Corners

Corners are a big part of the geometry in your test because they set you up for the next movement. One common mistake that I see riders make in their tests is that they cut their corners and allow their horse to counter bend and fall inward. Make sure you ride into the corner with bend and look up and ahead to plan for your next movement. Imagine that there is a jump on the line ahead of you and you have to ride a good turn to line up with it!

The biggest things that will help you to ride an accurate test are firstly, studying the geometry in your test and knowing your touch points for each figure, and secondly, looking up to where you are riding

Watch the video above where I explain more about the correct touch points for your circles and corners. I also have a drone filming from above (as well as my regular camera) so you can get a better idea of the correct geometry.

I hope that these tips help give you an idea of how you can ride your tests a bit more accurately so that you can boost your eventing scores! A big thank you to Eventing Nation for collaborating on this video.

Happy Riding!

Amelia

P.S. Want more help with your canter? Check out my FREE Canter PDF mini-course to help! Download the course here.

Amelia Newcomb is a USDF Gold medalist, a member of the prestigious USEF Dressage Development Program, and recipient of the Carol Lavell Prize from the Dressage Foundation. Based in Somis, California, she incorporates complete dressage training from starting the young horse through the FEI levels.

Amelia works to develop a trusting and confident relationship between horse and rider. Her approach incorporates all aspects of horsemanship from basic groundwork to advanced dressage movements. The emphasis is always on the foundation with the basic trust, understanding, and relaxation for both horse and rider to create a harmonious partnership.
Amelia’s mantra has always been “Dressage for All,” which is evident in both her in person and online coaching. With a successful YouTube video library of hundreds of free educational videos, over 135,000 subscribers (and counting!), and thousands of students enrolled in her online USDF accredited courses, it is clear that Amelia has a passion for teaching and dressage! “I have been blessed with many great teachers in my career and I hope to help each and every one of my students develop a connection and solid relationship with their horses.”

Learn more about Amelia on her website or discover her free educational videos on her YouTube channel “Amelia Newcomb Dressage.”

Read more tips from Amelia on EN here.

Amelia Newcomb’s Top 3 Canter Exercises for Eventers

EN is pleased to partner with Amelia Newcomb Dressage for an exclusive training series, just in time for the off-season! Over the next few months, we’ll bring you regular training content from Amelia, whose “dressage for all” through online education makes learning accessible for more riders.

Amelia Newcomb is a USDF Gold medalist, a member of the prestigious USEF Dressage Development Program, and recipient of the Carol Lavell Prize from the Dressage Foundation. Based in Somis, CA, she incorporates complete dressage training from starting the young horse through the FEI levels.

Amelia works to develop a trusting and confident relationship between horse and rider. Her approach incorporates all aspects of horsemanship from basic groundwork to advanced dressage movements. The emphasis is always on the foundation with the basic trust, understanding, and relaxation for both horse and rider to create a harmonious partnership.

Amelia’s mantra has always been “Dressage for All,” which is evident in both her in person and online coaching. With a successful YouTube video library of hundreds of free educational videos, over 135,000 subscribers (and counting!), and thousands of students enrolled in her online USDF accredited courses, it is clear that Amelia has a passion for teaching and dressage. “I have been blessed with many great teachers in my career and I hope to help each and every one of my students develop a connection and solid relationship with their horses,” she says.

Learn more about Amelia on her website (www.amelianewcombdressage.com) or discover her free educational videos on her YouTube channel, Amelia Newcomb Dressage. And now, we’ll hand it over to the woman herself:

Pippa Funnell and Billy Walk On. Photo by Tilly Berendt.

Love to jump? If you are an eventer, then the answer is most likely: yes! If you love jumping then you know how important it is to work on the quality of the canter so that you can make your distance to each fence and get a nice, clean jump over the fence. And in this video, I will be going over three flatwork exercises to help you with just that!

Before we get into the video, I just wanted to give a big thank you to Eventing Nation for helping to make this video possible. Though I am mainly a Dressage rider, my mantra is Dressage for All, and I believe that Dressage can help riders and horses across all disciplines.

Flatwork is a great way to improve your canter quality so that you can get a better distance, and jump higher and cleaner. Riding on the flat may not be as fun as jumping, but it is worth it to spend time doing some flatwork each week. Here are three flatwork exercises to help you improve your canter quality. First, a video I produced exclusively for Eventing Nation to visualize what I’ll explain below:

The Snowman

This is a great exercise to get your horse supple and easier to turn, bend, and maneuver around the course. It also will help to get your horse rounder and using their hind end.

To ride the Snowman, start riding a 20-meter circle in one direction, then change direction at the centerline and ride a 10-meter circle. As soon as you get back to the centerline, change direction and bend and ask for canter, going back onto your 20-meter circle.

Repeat the pattern by changing direction and trotting on your 10-meter circle, then cantering on your 20-meter circle.

If you haven’t done the Snowman exercise before, check out this video where I go into more detail:

The 5 x 5 Exercise

This exercise helps you work on the adjustability of the canter stride so it is easier to make the distance to your fences.

First, pick up the canter and begin counting your strides. Start the exercise by closing your calf and riding forward for five strides, then, shorten your horse’s stride for five strides using half-halts. Repeat this pattern of riding forward for five strides, and then bringing your horse back for five strides.

When you ride forward, remember to follow your horse’s motion with your seat after you close your leg.

As you bring your horse back in the canter with your half-halts, remember to first sit up and back, tighten your abdominals, and then give a little squeeze, release, squeeze, release with your wrist.

Walk-Canter Transitions

Once you feel like your trot-canter transitions are fairly solid, you can start introducing walk-canter transitions. As a Dressage rider, I work on lots of walk-canter to help develop collection in my horses. Walk-canter transitions are a great exercise to engage your horse’s hind end and get them rounder so that you can get a clean jump over your fences.

When you are working on these transitions, really focus on getting a nice active, collected walk, then ask for canter. Your goal is to have your horse canter right out of the walk without any trot steps!

As you are working on these exercises, keep in mind that it is important to ride each of the exercises in both directions. I like to ride each pattern about three times before switching directions. This will help your horse become straighter and to correctly develop their body so that they can stay sound, healthy, and have long, successful careers.

Watch the video at the top of this article and give these three exercises a try, and I know that you will see a difference in your jumping! Even if you aren’t an eventer, these exercises are great for improving the canter and getting your horse more supple and round. Again, thank you to Eventing Nation for collaborating with me and making this video possible!

Happy Riding!
Amelia

P.S. Want more help with your canter? Check out my FREE Canter PDF mini-course to help! Download the course here.