The Vermont Tech Dressage team is affiliated with the Intercollegiate Dressage Association. The mission of IDA is to introduce students to the equestrian discipline of dressage and to foster continued development, understanding and appreciation in the art of dressage through organized student competitions and educational opportunities.
IDA is affiliated with the United States Dressage Federation and adheres closely to the US Equestrian Federation rules.
At IDA shows, teams of four collegiate riders compete at Introductory, Lower Training, Upper Training, and First Level. Member schools may enter more than one team per show. Participants are given a short warm-up on the horse they have drawn before riding their dressage test. Host colleges provide the horses used during competitions, adding to the challenge of the competition.
Members of the Vermont Tech Dressage Team ride together during weekly practice under the guidance of the coaches. The emphasis in practice is to improve the skill level of each rider while helping them learn to adapt and work with horses of varying levels of training and experience so they will be well-prepared for competition in IDA shows, as well as a career in the equine industry as a trainer, riding instructor, or competitive rider.
The dressage team also regularly participates in community service and fundraising events like a Halloween Barn and food drive, as well as social and professional events (pumpkin carving, team dinners, fieldtrips, and riding in clinics with well-known dressage clinicians). The Vermont Tech Dressage Team is a great way to make friends, be involved in the campus community, and build the equine experience section of your resume!
The head coach for Vermont Tech’s Dressage Team is Lori Berger. Lori brings a wealth of knowledge and experience in coaching, competing and instructing, and is an instructor and faculty member in the Equine Studies Program. Lori is an American Riding Instructors’ Association certified instructor and previously coached the Dartmouth College dressage team. She was introduced to dressage training at the stables of Olympic medalist Michael Poulin while studying at Colby College, and has since cultivated an interest in the application of dressage and human/equine biomechanics to improve the success of amateur riders of all disciplines. For nearly twenty years she was a fixture at the Green Mountain Horse Association where she was a guest lecturer, taught clinics and camps for both adults and children, and successfully coached 3 of their junior dressage teams.
Assistant Coach Caitlin Janus has a Bachelor’s of Science in Veterinary and Animal Science from UMASS-Amherst, where she was a member of their eventing team. Before joining Vermont Tech, Caitlin was the barn manager, assistant trainer, and instructor at East Hill Farm in Plainfield, VT under the guidance of Ruth Hogan-Poulsen, noted Grand Prix Dressage rider.
Want to help support the Dressage Team?
Become a sponsor! Because of the large financial contributions required for equestrian competition, the dressage team is always in need of financial support to cover show entry costs, membership dues, travel, and compensation of the coaches. If you would like to make either a monetary donation or donate professional services, supplies, or gifts that your business will allow to be auctioned off to the public with the proceeds benefitting the Vermont Tech Dressage Team, please contact us!