Wolffe Dressage
Athletic Fitness

Dutch at Championships_0.JPG My riding career began in 1963 (at the age of 4) with Pony Club equitation lessons at Tatersalls Stables in Bedford, England.  I rode ponies for a few years, until we moved to Wiesbaden, Germany in 1968.  It was in Germany that my real training began...

1968 - 1972   Wiesbaden, Germany.  Rode dressage and show jumping.  Had extensive training on the lunge line at Reitsportgemeinschaft in Wiesbaden and was introduced to the piaffe/passage work for dressage. I was enthralled with dressage from that point on. I also had a year of vaulting lessons at this time. Hired as an exercise rider and campaigned a show jumper for its owner.

1973   Bedford, England.  Rode dressage and show jumping, competed in pony and preliminary jumpers, and taught beginners (all ages) at Box
End School of Equitation.

1974   Austin, Texas, USA.  Exercise rider at Hidden Valley Farm. Rode jumpers, dressage horses, and Tennessee Walkers.  Freelance training and breaking of young horses.

1975 - 1976   Tehran, Iran.  Worked for Shah of Iran at Faharabad Stables riding and teaching dressage and show jumping. Competed in the Iranian/Swiss Invitational Jumper Show on a horse I trained.

1976   Stratford on Avon, England. Studied at Windmill Hill Riding Academy for my Horsemaster and Assistant Instructor exams. While at school, I was introduced to eventing by the head trainer, Peter Roberts. I was able to ride several dressage GP schoolmasters at this farm to increase my knowledge and effectiveness for collection, my own position, and all of the FEI level movements.

1977 - 1978   Austin, Texas, USA.  Rode, competed, and taught dressage and eventing at Blackacre Stables. Worked local breed farms as a stallion handler and handled the breaking of race track thoroughbreds.

1978 - 2000   Briggs/Cedar Park, Texas, USA. Operated my own dressage barn. Became certified as a Pony Club and USDF instructor at this time. I also trained/rode the USEA Area 5 training champion "All American Boy" in 1985. I competed at the Arabian Nationals in dressage and jumping on clients horses for a couple of years.  One of my own half Arabians (Ariba of Aslan) was Region 9 Third Level Champion.  I schooled her through I1 before she was sold and became part of the Region 2 team in the North American Young Rider Championships. My own FEI horse, "Rowdy" (a track Thoroughbred), was also only shown through I1 before he was purchased by dressage judge and guru Elizabeth Madlener. In these years, my students and I would clinic with Molly Sivewright, Franz Rochowansky, or Bill Solyntjes when they were in the area.  At my own farm, I regularly hosted clinics with Hubert Rohrer SRS until his death and then was lucky enough to bring in Karl Mikolka SRS.  These two Spanish Riding School gifted trainers taught me to logically and kindly train my horses through Grand Prix with a clear methodology that I still use today.

2001 - 2013   Freelance dressage trainer in the Austin, Texas area.  In 2012, I took on a second career as a school teacher.

2013   Moved to Oregon and now currently building a freelance dressage training business.

In all the years that I ran my own facility, I continued with my own training, traveling frequently to work with my trainers in Virginia, Florida, and England. I would take my own horses for some of the trips and for the others, I would ride horses they provided. I had two stallions on my farm, my own retired Danish stallion and the Hanoverian Raphael Son II, a horse I found on a buying trip to Germany, whom I campaigned until the owner was able to take him over. We bred and collected the stallions at my farm as well as maintained a small band of broodmares. I worked with all of the babies until they were sold. My students and I competed lightly throughout USDF Region 9, always ending those years with successes at the regional Championships.

 Open, Amateur, and Junior Champions

Throughout my career, I've tried to be an advocate of having a standard testing procedure for those that wish to take on the responsibility of the brain and body development of a dressage horse or rider. Had I stayed in England, I may have continued with the remaining BHS certification. I was pleased when the USDF began its own instructor program 20 years ago. I immediately traveled to California and sailed through the first step in that certification process.  Unfortunately, this program still struggles for recognition and, as much as I believe in this concept, the time/cost effectiveness of continuing with it has not been a priority for me. My own collected "pieces of paper" as a recognized Instructor are as follows:
  • 1976 British Horse Society
  • 1988 US Pony Club
  • 1995 United States Dressage Federation

I have had the good fortune to ride with some wonderful trainers, and on some wonderful horses, during my career.  My biggest mentors were Molly Sivewright FBHS as well as Hubert Rohrer and Karl Mikolka from the Spanish Riding School.  These trainers were/are masters of our sport and I work everyday to live up to the ideals they set out for me.  Please feel free to call or email  for any information you would like about my lessons and training.