USDF Announce Dues Increase for 2011 Membership Year

United States Dressage Federation has announced an increase in membership dues and horse registration fees for the 2011 membership year, which begins December 1, 2010.

March 14, 2010 — United States Dressage Federation (USDF) has announced a membership dues and horse registration fee increase for the 2011 membership year, which begins December 1, 2010. At the 2009 Adequan/USDF Annual Convention in Austin, Texas, the following dues and fees were approved by the Board of Governors (BOG); 1-year Participating Membership (PM) – $75, Youth PM – $60, 5-Year PM – $300, Life PM – $1500, Business Membership – $200, Group Member Organization (GMO) Membership – $20, GMO Supporting Family Membership – $10, Horse Identification Number (HID) – $25, and Lifetime Horse Registration (LHR) – $95.

This is the first dues increase the USDF membership has seen in seven years. Following a presentation before the Board of Governors (BOG) on December 3, 2009, by Ken Levy, chairman of the Ad Hoc Committee to Evaluate the Membership and Fee Structure, which was formed the previous year at the Board of Governors in Denver, Colo., the BOG passed all recommendations made by the committee. In his presentation, Ken stated: “Costs change, unfortunately they never go backwards. Things have gone up. We’re just trying to catch up cost wise. “

Sam Barish, former president of USDF, who presided over the 2009 BOG, was pleased with the passage of the dues increase, and the subsequent balanced budget that was also approved. Sam stated, “The new budget puts USDF on firm financial footing for the future.”

For more information on USDF membership and horse registrations, or to find out more about the annual convention and board of governors, visit

*To say that I am not thrilled about the fee increase is an understatement. I also have a problem with the fact that they state they have had not had any fee increases in a decade. They just increase the lifetime horse fee a few years ago. What is so frustrating is that the USDF seems to have lost touch with the needs of your average rider. I was on the fence about joining Phoenix and I this year, and I have been regretting doing it ever since. The shows are just so much more expensive than school schooling shows. Not only that but the number of shows you have to do to even qualify for an award is very high so you are just spending lots and lots of money with them and most likely not getting a whole lot back unless you are a 70% horse/rider combo. Clinics and other educational opportunities are often for the upper level or pro rider only. I am just frustrated with how expensive it is already so to hear about a rate increase just broke my heart. It would not be such a big deal if we were not required (by penalty of paying a fee for non-membership) to have a $75 USEF membership as well. That is $150 in memberships already not counting GMO memberships, which have also gone up this year and will likely go up again next year because USDF is likely to raise their dues to them as well. At what point does it not become worth it? For me, who was already on the fence about joining, breaking that $150 limit is most likely going to be my breaking point unless I have the show year to end all show years going USDF this year. I am also disappointed because George Williams seemed to understand the difficulties of being an adult amateur trying to compete in dressage…I guess not.  I have a lot of thoughts as to how USDF can save and make money which I will share in another post. For now I just wanted to share the news and my disappointment.*


5 thoughts on “USDF Announce Dues Increase for 2011 Membership Year

  1. I would say I wouldn’t even compete in Dressage if my horse wasn’t made for it. I am tempted just doing the lifetime fee that way they can’t increase on me. ( I think) I do feel your pain though and as a college student it makes it even worse. I wish you all the luck in the world.

  2. It isn’t any better on the hunter/jumper side I don’t have to tell you. Another reason I keep putting off that year of big showing I keep talking about – I need a second job to afford it! It’ll be schooling shows for me and Boom again this year… maybe 2011 will be our year 😦

  3. AHA has raised their fees as of April 1 of this year. They did the same justification “not raised fees since…” bs. Believe me, I feel your pain.

    To be a show manager for a show with dressage classes, I have to have the USDF membership as well and I don’t even show dressage. Any way they can stick their hand in our pockets.

    Those people at the top could care less about a few extra bucks. It’s us little guys that feel the pain.

  4. The gripe about the educational opportunies for the average rider are so legitimate!!!!! But you know how it is: We members at the bottom of the pyramid carry the whole ball game! When the qualification proposal was tried, I think an important message was sent back to the USDF by the grassroots! OTOH, while that was stopped, there has been no real effort to develop stuff for us! I’m tired of being closed out of the the better and more important clinics, for example! It’s ridiculous! Education is education…..anyone with the desire to learn should be allowed to audit every single clinic that membership dollar supports….

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