From Endurance to Dressage
I'll admit it. I am constantly trying to find an equine application for all things non-equestrian that I encounter during my daily routine. Who can't find TONS of horsey necessities at the grocery store, Target, or Home Depot? Even my husband knows that Lowe's or OSH can produce tack, feed, or barn items.
But really, athletic shoes? How are they even slightly useful for the equestrian other than for the obvious?
I bought a pair of Sketchers' Shape-ups over the weekend and finally wore them to work on Wednesday. I have to say, they may well do what they claim! I spent the day working very hard to stay balanced. I kept tipping forward and back as I struggled to stand up straight. The tendons on the outside of my knees were actually a bit sore by 3:30.
I have concluded that these are the PERFECT shoes for dressage riders. The glossy, twenty-page insert that came with my shoes even says so! According to Sketchers, walking regularly in Shape-ups may ...
Improve posture (there's the shoulder, hip, knee, ankle alignment)
Strengthen the back (for holding up those horses heavy on your hands)
Tighten abdominal muscles (perfect for slowing your pace)
Firm buttock muscles (for the sitting trot)
Tone and firm thigh muscles (better leg position)
Reduce knee joint stress (cheaper than the MDC Stirrups that I bought)
Firm calf muscles (keeps the toes forward and heels down)
If they really can do all of this, I might even show in them!
About the Writer and Rider
I am a lifelong rider.
I began endurance riding in 1996 where I ultimately completed five, one-day 100 mile races, the 200-mile Death Valley Encounter, and numerous other 50, 65, and 75 mile races. I began showing dressage in 2010.
Welcome to my dressage journey.
About Speedy G
Speedy went from endurance horse to dressage horse. After helping me earn a USDF Bronze medal in the summer of 2020, he is now semi-retired. Speedy is a 2004, 15'1 hand, purebred Arabian gelding. His Arabian Horse Registry name is G Ima Starr FA.
Izzy was started as a four-year old and then spent the next 18 months in pasture growing up. I bought him as a six-year old, and together, we are showing at Second Level. He is a 2008, 16'3 hand warmblood gelding. His Rheinland Pfalz-saar International (RPSI) name is Imperioso.
National Rider Awards
State Rider Awards
State Horse Awards
CDS Sapphire Rider Award
Third Level: 63.514%
Third Level: 62.105%
2021 Show Season
(r) Ride-a-Test Clinic
(Q) Must Qualify
2022 Pending …
2021 Completed …
10/24-25 SCEC (***)
11/7-11/8 SB (***)
4/10-11 SCEC (***)
5/16-17 El Sueño (***)
6/26-27 SCEC (***)
7/17-18 El Sueño (***)
8/7-8 SCEC (***)
10/30-31 SCEC (***)
2021 Qualifying Scores
Regional Adult Amateur Competition (RAAC)
2nd Level Qualifying
3 Scores/2 Judges/60%:
Score 1: 60.610% Bhathal
2nd Level Qualifying
5 Scores/4 Judges/61%:
Stuff I Read