Training at Cedar Meadow

Head trainer Alyssa Pagon Pitts, a native of Snohomish, WA, is a USEF Developing List rider who is a successful and active Grand Prix trainer and competitor. She is also a USDF L judge program graduate with distinction and USEF "r" judge candidate.

A self-made rider and trainer, Alyssa has gained a reputation for good horsemanship and skillful riding by achieving repeated successes with many different horses. Notably, she has taken some very difficult "problem" horses and turned them into very successful Grand Prix horses. Alyssa is also very adept in training and bringing along green horses, and was the USEF national 4 year old champion with Furst Fiorano in 2011.

Alyssa is a serious and dedicated trainer and rider. Horses trained by Alyssa have a high degree of rideability while also being developed to the best of their athletic abilities. Alyssa is also a sought after instructor and clinician with a positive approach to teaching. Her students have been very successful in the show ring as well as in their relationships with their horses. Alyssa has coached several CDS Junior Champions and her students have also been quite successful at the USDF Championships and in earning their USDF medals.

Although Alyssa enjoys showing and competing, it is not the be all, end all of her training and her focus. She takes pride in developing horses and riders, regardless of their competitive aspirations. Beginners through advanced riders are welcome, and AP Dressage does offer lessons on school horses for those without horses. Horses of all levels and breeds are welcome as well.

Alyssa has been influenced by many trainers and schools of thought. She is coached by former USA team coach, Anne Gribbons. She has worked with Steffen Peters and Alfredo Hernandez, and she has taken clinics with Robert Dover, Debbie McDonald, Heike Kemmer, Arthur Kottas-Heldenberg, and Axel Steiner. She has also been very influenced by Randy Leighton who has inspired her to adopt a system that is based on timing and feel and that treats each horse as an individual and partner.

Before deciding to pursue dressage seriously, Alyssa competed in three day eventing and schooled jumpers. She grew up going through the ranks of Pony Club in Washington state, attaining the "B" rating at the age of 16. After achieving her "B" rating, Alyssa took some time off from riding to competitively play basketball, soccer, and run track, including helping her team to win the basketball state championships and placing 2nd in the state track meet in the 800m.

Alyssa went on to run track and cross country at Stanford University, graduating with a bachelors in English. Halfway through college, she felt that something very important was missing in her life, and she found horses again...the rest is history...

Alyssa Pitts and Enigma.
Alyssa Pitts and Jil Sander. Photography by Debbie Hansen.