NZ dressage forum this weekend

September 9, 2009

Steffen Peters and Ravel, winners of the dressage World Cup final earlier this year. © Kit Houghton/FEI

Some of the world's leading equestrian talent will be at Manfeild next month to team up with Massey University's leading equine scientists and sporting academics for the International Equestrian Federation regional dressage forum.

The forum will be held at Manfeild's Agri-Stadium in Feilding from September 12-14.

The University is co-hosting the forum with Dressage New Zealand. Equine lecturer Dr Chris Rogers says it is a role that fit well with the commitment to advancing equine education.

"We formed a strategic alliance with Dressage New Zealand to develop a continuing education package to disseminate the latest international trends and knowledge in training, coaching and applied equine research to the Australasian and Pacific equestrian community," Dr Rogers says.

"Last year's forum, which received rave reviews in the international equestrian press, examined the role of the horse's neck and back in locomotion and training. This year we have achieved a major coup having as key speakers the most influential man in world dressage, recently appointed federation director of dressage Trond Asmyr, and the international dressage superstar and winner of the recent dressage world cup, Steffen Peters."

Hannah Appleton
The federation, the governing body for Olympic equestrian disciplines, identified this year's event as an official education programme, which is international recognition of the University's equine programme and the education partnership with Dressage New Zealand, Dr Rogers says.

The final day of the event is the University high performance day featuring one-on-one coaching from Mr Peters for New Zealand's elite riders. One of those is Academy of Sport member Hannah Appleton. The 19-year-old rider, in her second year of a Bachelor of Applied Science in agriculture and equine studies, is the only rider in Australasia who has qualified for the world young rider championships in Germany at the end of the year.

Four lecturers from the equine and sport science programmes will investigate how to optimise performance: