Western Dressage Association® Of Michigan!
We are the official Michigan Affiliate of the Western Dressage Association® of America, a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, founded in 2010 as the Nationally Recognized Affiliate for the United States Equestrian Federation (USEF).
The Western Dressage Association® of Michigan (WDAMI) was created to further the Mission Statement of the Western Dressage Association® of America. Through clinics, shows, and events, we work with all Michigan clubs, associations and organizations that are interested in adding Western Dressage to their venues.
About Western Dressage
From the seeds planted by men such as Tom and Bill Dorrance, grew new and more humane methods of starting colts and finishing performance horses. Light hands, subtle cues, and an appreciation for the ultimate benefits derived from a true partnership between horse and rider all led to a revolution in Western Horsemanship. It was only natural that at some point on this journey east would meet west, English would meet western, and Classical Dressage would meet the spirit of the western horse. When that day arrived, Western Dressage was born.
Western Dressage discipline is a melding of training methods. Classical Dressage brings the techniques of master European horsemen, techniques that are hundreds of years old and based upon principles which encourage cadence, balance, and carriage. It is technical and it is precise, a rigorous discipline for horse and rider. It is also an art. Western Horsemanship has been practiced on the ranches of the American West since the 1700s and even earlier through the traditions of the Spanish vaqueros. The subsequent advances in Western Horsemanship begun by the Dorrance Brothers and practiced by a new generation of horsemen and women opened the door to the mind of the horse, encouraging patience and understanding. The concept of “lightness” and subtle cues grew from its acceptance.
Suzanne Morisse brings to the horse world a unique way of teaching our equine friends by using our energy and senses. Suzanne believes through body language, touch, voice, visual, and telepathic communication and energy, horses can learn to do amazing things, develop their minds and have fun learning.
Suzanne grew up around horses and has spent her life studying these beautiful creatures. She has studied a variety of training and disciplines and is devoted to blending classical principles with natural horsemanship. Suzanne has studied and or trained under nationally and internationally known horseman throughout her career. She has had the privilege and honor to be a student of Walter Zettl. Suzanne feels that Walter is truly an amazing horseman and teacher. She has been a student of Maryal Barnett for over 10 years and enjoys working with Mari Zdunic, Elaine Ward, Dorothy Mueller and Elizabeth David.
Suzanne is a USDF “L” graduate and is a carded judge for the Western Style Dressage Association of Canada as well as a senior judge for the American Haflinger Registry. She is also a graduate of the WDAA Advanced Train the Trainer Program. Suzanne has been a 4-H leader for 21 years and is a CHA certified instructor. She has been teaching dressage, western, saddle seat, driving and trick training for over 25 years. Some of Suzanne’s students hold national and state titles. Suzanne has shown many different breeds of horse throughout her career and she holds many national titles in the Haflinger world along with a few state titles in western dressage. In 2016 Suzanne won a World Championship and Reserve Championship at the Western Dressage Championship Show at Third level and was Reserve Champion overall. In 2017 she placed third overall in Level 3. You may read about Suzanne journey with her lovely Haflinger mare Sabreena Sue at Western Dressage Association of Michigan (WDAMI) web site, under news flash!
Suzanne may best be known with her partner Madira, “The Famous Charity Trick Horse.” Madira knows well over 60 tricks from high school trick like the bow, lay down , head stand to prop tricks like basketball, getting the mail, identifying colors, letters, numbers and picture cards. Madira can even spell.
Madira and Suzanne traveled throughout the state from 1996 to 2014 performing at charity events, schools, churches, nursing home and the Michigan horse expo a few times. Madira’s favorite was the nursing home where she would go inside to perform and then visit with the residents. Suzanne and Madira have been featured in many newspapers, local news channels, national and state newsletters and magazine.
Suzanne and her horses continue their journey together and enjoy a variety of activities at the Lazy S Ranch Equine Learning Center LLC near Dafter, Michigan in Michigan’s beautiful Upper Peninsula.
Suzanne is looking forward to working with Dorothy Mueller and presenting “Having Fun with Western Dressage,” brought to you by Western Dressage Association of Michigan and Michigan Stallion Expo.
For more information about the Western Dressage Association of Michigan, visit their booth at the Michigan Horse Expo, or check out their website: www.wdami.org.
Susanne, assisted by Dorothy Mueller as narrator, will present programs at the Expo in the following venues and times:
- Saturday, March 10
- Round Pen, 5:30-6:30 p.m., Having Fun with Western Dressage
- Sunday, March 11
- Main Arena, 1:30-2:30 p.m., Having Fun with Western Dressage
Suzanne will also participate in the Friday School Field Trip programs.