Paula Paglia Dressage
On the Bit
January 2019
In This Issue
Barn News & Updates
Dressage Training Video:  How to Properly Turn Your Dressage Horse
Dressage Training: Goal Setting Tips for the New Year
Horse Care Tip of the Month:  New Thinking About Cribbing
Life & Style: Clever Holiday Decor Storage Hacks
Recipe of the Month:  Million Dollar Deviled Eggs
Paula's Pearls: "Ah-Ha!" Moments in Riding
A Little Inspiration
Barn News & Updates

Championship Dressage Horse for Sale
Megan and Ssavant

SR Ssavant 2006 Arabian Gelding (15.2h) Competing PSG and I-1  
Ssavant is an athletic, hard-working and fun horse to ride. There are not many like him. Megan Manning has been bringing him up the levels since they started at Training Level together in 2013. Earlier this year they made their I-1 debut. He is the perfect horse for anyone wanting to earn their medals (Megan received her bronze, silver, and has started getting her gold medal scores on him). He would be incredibly successful in the Arabian Sporthorse and Dressage ring; however, he has mainly competed on the USDF circuit where he has had no problem being competitive among Warmbloods. Earlier this month he took home the Region 5 Fourth Level AA Championship, and he placed 4th in the PSG. In previous years he has held AZ State Championship wins at 1st and 2nd level. He is a very soft and smooth horse to ride. He performs easily in both the snaffle or double. His mouth and gaits are gentle enough for even an inexperienced yet confident rider. Ssavant and Megan will compete one last time together at the Arizona State Championships. Contact me if you'd like more information on this very special horse.

Horse Available for 3/4 Lease
for lease
Looking for a safe, friendly, willing horse for low-level dressage work and trail riding? I've got a lovely gelding here who is available to you for 4-5 days a week. The lease will include two lessons a week with me, plus your own independent riding the other days. Contact his owner directly here with inquiries.

My Davidoff Found a Wonderful New Home!
Davy and Rudy

I had sent my beautiful 5-year-old gelding Davidoff to Rodolfo Lara, a talented horseman in Las Cruces, New Mexico for training. Rudy totally bonded with Davy right from the start and is now his new owner! He is training Davy with the garrocha pole and they are working on Western Dressage and working equitation. It will be exciting to follow Davy's new career!

Central AZ Riding Academy Champagne Dressage Show January 5-6
MANY thanks to CARA Dressage and the fabulous show they hosted. It was a wonderful show with so much for the competitors - wine & cheese party, progressive dinner, a champagne brunch AND prizes!! I am beyond speechless and so grateful that Ed & Sherrill Tripp's Slipstream (Lucy) and and I were awarded two beautiful trophies- one for high point PSG and one for high point FEI test with an FEI freestyle!! Additionally, we were awarded $500 in the Prix St James challenge which will I'll use for tuition for future clinics. I want to also congratulate Luca Paulina Schoepke on her rides at CARA. She rode her first two FEI classes on Kate & Dave Earl's In D'Aire (Indy) and won both the PSG and the I1!

Emily Glidden's "Get in the Zone" Clinic
January 26-27, 2019 - 9 AM to 5 PM at Paula Paglia Dressage & Lionheart Center
In this two-part clinic, learn visualization techniques to optimize your dressage performance for competition and pleasure. Participants will walk away with new perspectives and practical tools to bring your best self for you and your horse.
Dressage Training Video
How to Properly Turn Your Dressage Horse

Dressage Training
Goal Setting Tips for Riders

Advice from: Paul Haefner, Ph.D. | Source:

Paul Haefner
Paul Haefner, Ph.D. of Riding Far,LLC. (Photo by Hannah Jones Photography)
What are your riding goals for the new year and how do you plan to tackle them?

Sport psychology, particularly as it applies to riding, is such an interesting topic. I like to learn more about it whenever I can. So, when I heard that my friend and Maryland-based trainer Abby Gibbon was hosting a sport psychology lecture series with Paul Haefner, Ph.D., of  Riding Far, LLC., at her nearby  Fine Idea Farm, I was eager to attend.

1. Small accomplishments are still accomplishments.  Haefner began the session by asking each person in the room to share two things: a riding goal they achieved this past year, and something they achieved that morning (it didn't have to be riding-related). I shared that I earned my USDF bronze medal, which was something I had been really focused on for the past couple of years. I also explained that on a larger scale, I was just proud of myself for setting aside my performance anxieties and getting into the show ring. I struggled to think of something I had achieved on the morning of the lecture, so, I just said I was happy that I made it to Abby's farm on time! Other riders in the room mentioned a variety of accomplishments, which ranged from jumping a full course of jumps, to earning scores at Second Level, to riding a clean cross-country course. Their accomplishments on the day of the lecture included cleaning a bathroom and feeding horses breakfast in record time. Haefner's point in all of this was that goals don't always have to be big. "When we think about goals, we think about these really big things," he said. "The reality is that goals can be big things and they can be really small things. Small accomplishments are still accomplishments. Big accomplishments are made up of small accomplishments."

2. It's human nature to be critical. He went on to explain that it's simply human nature, when we are faced with a setback, for us to dismiss our accomplishments. "One of the things human beings do consistently is that we critique ourselves and easily dismiss any sort of progress," he said. "We are always primed to look for the negative and we are also primed to interpret that as lack of progress toward our goals."

3. When you set a goal, use positive language to phrase it. "The goal you are shooting for needs to be stated in a positive way," Haefner said. For example, if you want to improve your sitting trot, state your goal as "I would like to sit more quietly in the sitting trot" instead of "I don't want to bounce as much in the sitting trot." Positive phrasing is important because it helps your brain focus on the right idea. If someone were to tell you "Don't think about a pink elephant," you would automatically picture a pink elephant. Focusing on what you don't want practices what you don't want. Focus on and practice what you want instead.

4. If we set goals in such a way that it makes the first step difficult, it is unlikely that we will attain the goal. For example, getting out of bed is actually an important accomplishment because if you don't do that, nothing else gets done.

5. Remember that goals are helpful tools, but they do not exist in isolation. In order to attain our goals we also need positive motivation, appropriate resources and supportive relationships.

6.  Think about goals as a steering wheel.
 They channel energy and provide direction.

7. Haefner broke down the nature of a "good" goal into pieces. A good goal is:
Horse Care Tip of the Month
New Thinking About Cribbing

As researchers gain insights into this mysterious behavior, new approaches are emerging for handling horses who crib.

cribbing horse
Complaints about horses who crib date back centuries. In one 1889 legal case, a promising colt was returned from Belgium to Scotland on the basis of "unsoundness." Chief among the complaints: The colt was a "crib-biter."

This attitude wasn't unusual: "I have no hesitation in saying that a crib-biter is bona fide an unsound horse.... I verily believe that a crib-biter, sold with a warranty of soundness, is, to all intents and purposes, returnable," wrote T. B. Johnson in The Sportsman's Cyclopedia in 1831.

There is no denying that cribbing can be annoying. The horse places his upper teeth firmly on a hard object---be it a fence, stall door, water trough, or anything he can reach---pulls back, arches his neck, and gulps air into the upper part of his esophagus with a distinct grunting sound. What's more, a cribber can damage walls, fences and other structures around a farm.

Also called wind sucking, cribbing is a stereotypy---a repetitive, compulsive activity that seems to serve no purpose---and it poses some health risks. Horses who crib may be at a higher risk for some types of colic, and prolonged cribbing can wear down a horse's upper incisors, lead to overdevelopment of particular neck muscles and cause other physical problems. The pressures of cribbing can lead to osteoarthritis of the hyoid, a small bone in the throat. Some cribbers lose weight because they'd rather crib than eat.

Why horses crib
Researchers still aren't sure why some horses crib while others managed the same way do not. But most agree that it's not "contagious"---horses do not adopt this behavior by mimicking others. "There are many non-cribbing horses kept in stalls next to cribbing horses who don't learn this behavior," says Amelia S. Munsterman, DVM, PhD, DACVS, DACVECC, of the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Several surveys have suggested that the tendency to crib may be inherited. In one Japanese survey, for example, the overall rate of cribbing was 1 percent among 1,500 Thoroughbreds but 7 or 8 percent within certain families. In a 2009 survey from Cornell University that included more than 3,500 horses, 162 (4.4 percent) were identified as cribbers with Thoroughbreds found to be at higher risk compared to other breeds---13 percent among Thoroughbreds and 5 percent in warmbloods and Quarter Horses.

It's possible, though, that the higher cribbing rates seen in certain breeds have more to do with how they tend to be managed than genetics. The current thinking is that an individual horse might have a genetic predisposition to crib, but the behavior isn't triggered until he is subjected to stressors related to his lifestyle.

"Some things that might lead to cribbing in certain horses include a high-concentrate diet, lack of turnout and lack of socialization with other horses," says Wickens. "We think horses start cribbing as a coping mechanism. Recent studies have shown that when horses are allowed to perform stereotypic behavior, we see a reduction in the stress hormone cortisol and/or heart rate."

In a 2016 Swiss study, researchers subjected 19 cribbers and 18 non- cribbing control horses to a series of tests that required them to find a bucket of food in an arena. The cribbing horses were divided into two further groups: 10 were permitted to crib during the tests, and nine were prevented from engaging in the activity. Analysis of each horse's saliva before and after each test showed that cortisol levels were highest among cribbing horses who were not permitted to crib. Click here for the rest of the article.
Life & Style
 Clever Holiday Decor Storage Hacks


Don't let tangled lights and disorderly ornaments dampen your holiday spirit. Give yourself the gift of organized holiday decor with these creative and budget-friendly storage solutions.
apples to ornaments
Ap ples to Ornaments
Forgo an expensive, compartmentalized ornament box by stashing round ornaments in plastic apple containers. Blogger Laura Russell of Make Life Lovely says they take up less space than the ornaments' original boxes and are a great way to reuse plastic that  otherwise gets tossed.
compact tubing
Compact Tubing
Use concrete tubes to store an artificial tree. You can literally roll this into any closet or under the bed with ease.
wreaths on a rack
Wreaths on a Rack
Instead of stuffing artificial wreaths in plastic tubs, keep your wreaths fresh, untangled and ready for the next season using a coat rack. Blogger Karen Way of Sew Many Ways shows how to achieve the ultimate in wreath organization with hangers, plastic bags and labeled boxes to hold wreath decorations.
hang it up
Hang It Up
Grab a see-through garment bag for this clever storage solution that keeps wrapping paper dust-free and easily accessible. This idea makes you wonder, "Why didn't I think of that?" Good thing The Chic Site with Rachel Hollis did!
nice and tidy
Nice and Tidy
Use magazine racks to organize gift bags by holiday and event.
tie it up
Tie Up Loose Ends
All that leftover ribbon from presents received and given? Snatch up loose bits and fold them neatly in a shoebox for instant color-coordinated gratification. Bonus: Easily spot the color you need for next year's gifting. This holiday hack courtesy of blogger Jenny Dix of The Contemplative Creative. Click here for the rest of the article.
Recipe of the Month
 Million Dollar Deviled Eggs


deviled eggs

"With all of the cooking and entertaining I did over the holidays, these deviled eggs were by far the most popular dish I served! Spoiler alert: there is a sneaky secret ingredient in this recipe that makes these eggs just dynamite." - Paula

  • 1/4 cup mayo
  • 12 large eggs
  • Tablespoon butter, softened to room temperature
  • teaspoons yellow mustard
  • teaspoons dijon mustard
  • teaspoons sweet gherkin pickle juice
  • 1  teaspoon sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  • dashTabasco sauce, optional
  • paprika for sprinkling
  • bacon pieces, optional
How To Hard Boil Eggs
  • Place eggs in a large saucepan and cover with water.  
  • Transfer to stove top over high heat until water begins to boil.
  • Boil for one minute, cover with lid, and remove from heat.  Allow to sit for 17 minutes and then drain and transfer to an ice bath.    
  • Peel eggs and set aside.
How To Make Deviled Eggs
  • Slice eggs in half lengthwise.  
  • Remove yolks and transfer to a medium-sized bowl.  
  • Add mayo, butter, mustards, pickle juice, sugar, salt, pepper, and Tabasco sauce. Use a fork to mash well.
  • Spoon filling into each egg white. Sprinkle with paprika and bacon (if using) and serve.  
  • If desired, top with a small slice of sweet gherkin pickle, as seen in pictures.
A Little Inspiration
Here's a little something to make you smile

Paula's Pearls
"Ah-ha!" Moments in Riding

I have found a benefit in stretching my hips and hamstrings before I ride. Just try taking a few minutes before you get on to be sure your muscles are not tight and pinching. This allows your horse's back to have room under the saddle to relax, which gives you a softer place to sit.
About Paula Paglia

Paula Paglia
Paula Paglia, owner and head trainer of Paula Paglia Dressage in North Scottsdale, Arizona began her professional training career in 1979. Paula is a USDF Bronze, Silver and Gold Medalist and has been named ADA Rider of the Year numerous times through 2014. Paula has been an integral part of the training and success of her clients. She is credited with creating numerous winning horse and rider combinations through the FEI levels. She has developed Regional Winners and sent many students to the National Junior Young Riders Championships, the North American Young Riders Championships and the National Dressage Seat Equitation Finals.

Formerly the head trainer at Dynamite Dressage, and the head trainer at Los Cedros, she is thrilled to now offer her own niche to her clients: a full educational program based on dressage, developing amateurs, young riders and other professionals to their fullest potential. As owner of Paula Paglia Dressage, she has taken the best of training practices used throughout her career to offer a specialized experience for her clients. She considers her facility to be "heaven for horses." Owning her own facility allows her to cater to every horse's special needs.

Paula has trained with some of the most successful trainers and riders in the world, including Debbie McDonald, Leslie Reid, Christine Traurig, and Conrad Schumacher.

In 1992, Paula began importing warmbloods from Holland, Poland and Germany. Presently, Paula conducts personalized buying trips abroad for her clients, as she has extensive experience selecting and starting young horses and developing them up the levels.

The Paula Paglia Dressage philosophy is to develop a partnership between horse and rider. The well-being of the horse is the primary consideration. Paula evaluates each horse and rider individually and will design a program appropriate to their ability, yet focused on the long-term goals of upper-level classical dressage. Each horse and rider is developed at their own pace, allowing each team to be mentally and physically strong at each level of competition.

Paula believes that a successful training regimen is a logical, step-by-step process that utilized the horse's natural intelligence, his loyalty, his goodwill, and his honesty. A sensible, kind and structured training program will produce a horse with a strong muscle structure and a sharp working mind. Both are necessary to compete at the national and international levels of dressage.  
Paula Paglia Dressage Services

  • Boarding/Training
  • Lessons
  • Showing
  • Purchase/Sale
  • Clinics
  • International Equine Procurement 
  • Regulation arena with premium footing
  • Over-sized stalls, cleaned multiple times daily with premium shavings
  • Fly misting system and cooling misting system 
  • Three all-weather turnouts
  • Medical, shaded turnout
  • Premium hay feed 5x a day
  • Personalized grain/supplement feedings 2-3x a day
  • Automatic waterers/outside tubs and interior buckets cleaned daily
  • Hot water wash racks
  • Locked tack rooms
  • Laundry rooms
  • Blanketing/final night check
  • Caveletti course
  • Access to Equine Corridor trails
  • Regularly scheduled on-site clinics
  • Trailering to shows available
Paula Paglia Dressage | 480.695.4581  |