Bio Dale Forbes (Bormann)
If you count teaching Pony Club which I began in my teens, I have forty years experience as a trainer and coach. I have competed internationally, and though truthfully showing is not my main goal or love, I have an impressive show record starting as a child and including international competition at the highest level—Grand Prix. I have participated in the trials to pick an Olympic team—Atlanta games, ridden extensively in Germany. I have the USDF Gold and Silver Medals. I am a certified Equine Massage Therapist, Graduate A in Pony Club. I am one rank shy of the Black Belt in Aikido. I also have a degree in English, have written a novel and many published articles. My son is in graduate school in economics in Washington DC.
Below I list some of my background and teachers, the most influential of which is the wonderful Rudolf Zeilinger with whom I spent nearly a decade relearning all the things I had misinterpreted along the convoluted American path to dressage. You can map that below if you like. Here is the short version.
My favorite quote from Rudolf: Good horses make good riders.
My favorite quote from Wili Schulltheis: Kick! Pull!
(Schultheis was famous for his forward hand, and having read of this I was terrified to touch the horse’s mouth in front of him. I experienced my first piaff at his barn on a horse that Rudolf had just dismounted--basically by pretending I knew how and hoping not to look like a complete idiot. See Rudolf’s advice above)
My favorite horse: Galoni, bought for me by Rudolf as a five year old. Passed away two summers ago at twenty-two.
My best advice: This is a very long sport to learn. Don’t be in a hurry. Do ride as much as you can, and with the best help possible. Realize you know nothing and that it is not a problem. Thinking you already know and being attached to that wastes energy and is hard on you. Your riding will only be as good as your basic core, center and athletisism. Pay attention to Rudolf’s advice above. Horses are the actual teachers.
Background: If you are interested, I grew up riding . First western on the trails with my mother, then english--full tilt every day across the fields and trails to play with friends. We did gaming—until the local board ruled you had to have a western saddle! We fox hunted, jumping the logged walls of rural Massachusetts. We were members of 4-H, Pony Club, and through that began eventing. I mention these not because they are the greatest accomplishments but because through these activities I developed my base as a horse person, and a rider—not just a dressage rider.
My early trainers:
Fran and Joe Dotoli Hunter Jumper, Debbie Hoyte Hunter Jumper
Dick Collins Eventing and dressage, Jan Conant Eventing and Dressage
As a professional I have worked regularly with the following trainers:
In the Rocky Mojntain Dressage Association instructor’s series: Anders Lindgren, Sally Swift
Wili Schultheis, Rudolf Zeilinger (8 years regularly and my main influence.)
I am also indebted to the many fine clinicians who have added insight.
In no particular order: Felicitas Von Neuman Cosel, Betsy Steiner, Michael Poulin, Detrich Von Hoffgarten, Steffan Peters, Gunter Seidel, Debbie MacDonald, Jeff Moore
I have ridden and trained the following breeds of horses into the FEI Levels.
There are no best breeds—but there are horses in many breeds that are both suited and unsuited to dressage. Don’t ride the ones that are unsuited. They don’t like it and it is unkind. My least favorite breed for dressage? The Fresian. But I do think they are gorgeous. . .
Home |Our Horses |Lesson Barns | Dressage Snob | Rider Fitness & Stability |Boarding | Equimance | Training |Contact Us