I specialize in a true classical foundation in dressage suitable for continuing through FEI levels in dressage as well as cross-training with CT, eventing, stadium or open jumping, and applications for huntseat equitation, hunter/jumper and some western reining disciplnes.

Almost all of the weaknesses in high level competitive riding can be traced directly back to a poor foundation in the correct seat and a lack of understanding of the proper use of the aids, resulting in an inability to use the aids to their maximum advantage. If you're not riding correctly, your horse is not schooled correctly.

I teach and train using the Independent Seat and the Balance Seat, on the flat (dressage) and over fences. The Independent Seat is the safest and most effective seat used for riding and schooling the horse. As the most effective seat, it is not suprising that the Independent Seat also ends up being the most elegant seat (basic equitation does matter). It is a classical seat and it allows the rider to use the aids "independently" of each other as needed. Learning to use the aids properly provides the best communication and understanding between the horse and rider.

There are no short cuts. Learning the correct foundation from the beginning actually is the fastest way to acheive success in the saddle. The rider does not have to correct bad habits.

Melissa Hoffmann
Franklinton NC