Saturday, 23 December 2017

DIARY DATES 2018

THESE LOVELY YARDS WELCOME OUTSIDERS, PLEASE CONTACT ME TO MAKE A BOOKING

APRIL 2018
26 Claremont Equestrian Wokingham RG40 3DA 20x40 Indoor/Mirrors www.claremontequestrian.co.uk 
27 Angel Farm Chertsey KT16 0DJ 70x40 Outdoor/Mirrors
www.angelfarmclub.co.uk 

MAY 2018 
Blacklands Livery Elstead GU8 6LA 20x40 Outdoor
https://www.facebook.com/Blacklands-Livery-Yard-791133870959268/
SK Equestrian RG10 0NY 25x60 Outdoor
https://www.facebook.com/SKEquestrian/
9 Eversley Equestrian RG27 0NB 20x60 Outdoor
10 Redwood Equestrian Centre Chobham GU24 8SL 20x60 & 20x40 Mirrors
https://www.facebook.com/Redwoodequestraincentre/
16 Angel Farm Chertsey KT16 0DJ 70x40 Outdoor/Mirrors
www.angelfarmclub.co.uk 
17 Claremont Equestrian Wokingham RG40 3DA 20x40 Indoor/Mirrors www.claremontequestrian.co.uk 
22 Hall Place Reading 30x50 Outdoor/Small Indoor
http://hallplaceequestriancentre.co.uk
24 Grove Farm Guildford GU3 3HD 20x60 Outdoor
31 Abrook Farm Weybridge 25x40 Outdoor  www.abrookfarm.co.uk 

JUNE 2018 
8 Blacklands Livery Elstead GU8 6LA

Monday, 30 October 2017

OCTOBER/NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2017






4 year old QT growing up so nicely. Such a gorgeous baby horse, I love riding him so much. I only sit on him for 10 minutes every now and again as I'm a bit heavy for him really until he has developed a bit more back muscle. And I'm not brave anymore. He has not put a foot wrong but I don't want my old lady nerves to make him nervous when he is currently a brave boy. And if he is ever scared he needs someone up top to reassure him, not me pooing my Bridget Jones pants. In his 5 year old summer next year we will crack on a bit more. Cant wait! Fortunately I'm so busy with teaching and Alfie, it means QT has time to just grow and strengthen slowly. No rush, he is so talented and so trainable but we are in it for the long term, no quick fixes or rushing.
Take time but don't waste time.
He goes hacking around the hills a few times a week, a stretchy lunge, some pole work and so many kisses and cuddles I'm surprised I have time to do anything else!



Alfie!!!



Well you all know how much I love a before and after photo!
Here is a very talented young lady Annabelle Howie and her lovely young event horse Herbie. Annabelle has worked so hard to develop her position so that it becomes functional i.e. having a direct influence over her horses posture and engagement.
The first job of the riders seat is to balance.
Then to harmonise with the horse.
Then to influence the horse.
As the photo shows, young Annabelle is having a huge improvement over Herbie's posture and therefore he is now developing and building his beautiful top line. 


Another young lady working hard on her position and correct posture carriage and deportment is El Sayers and her very gorgeous Haflinger gelding Loki. Look at the improvement in her dressage position and therefore the difference in Loki's frame and muscle development. Wow. Well done El!




Ella Phillips January 2017....



Ella Phillips August 2017..... No words needed!



I was over the bloody moon to see Claire Edwards getting an 8 for both her Novice long side canter give and retakes recently from a listed judge. Not just because this means Bugsy was in self carriage, but because it means Bugsy was STRAIGHT! Its been a long time coming, but its arrived!!! Lots and lots and lots of exercises like shoulder in, counter canter, canter leg yields, counter positioning. Haaaaaaaaa. We did it. The horse who thought canter across the diagonal meant half pass across the diagonal......is now straight. Super job Claire. So very pleased for you.


 Clever Alfie won his first Advanced Medium and got himself another mention in H&H.



Michaela Doberman and Ratino have recently made some seriously huge breakthroughs. The use of Shoulder In and Travers (to help equally supple, straighten and strengthen)both horse and rider, for me, are invaluable tools. All humans load one leg/seat bone more, have a strong/weak side and strong/weak parts of their body, have some bits of the body that are too far forward, too up, too down, too far back.
Its not until your trainer identifies these that you can start to improve them and become more ambidextrous throughout your whole body.
The shoulder in, shoulder out, haunches in, haunches out highlights many many many strengths and weaknesses in both horse and rider. When you have all four of these movements you will have a more equally supple and engaged horse.
When I start a lesson I will ask my rider if there is anything particularly they want my help with today. 
Michaela wont mind me telling you that the most common sentence she says to me is 'Please can you help me get him in front of the leg.'.
What is that?
A horse willingly taking your forwards.....
Can a horse take you forwards if its crooked? Could I push a wheelbarrow very forward with one arm?
A horse pushing itself forwards instead of the rider having to continuously push the horse forwards.... 
If a horses hind legs are out behind, how can it push itself forwards?
That's like being in a swimming pool with your feet a few inches away from the edge. There is nothing to push off from. All you can do is doggy paddle at the front end. Or sink ha ha.
Of course a horse MUST react to the leg. Of course. But if it was just a simple as making the horse GO, wouldn't we all be regional champions? Of course a horse must go, of course a horse must react.
But it does often go an awful lot deeper as to WHY is the horse not going for free. WHY is the horse not in front of the leg. WHY is the horse not able to maintain that forward momentum. WHY. If its because the horse isn't reacting then you will have that sorted tomorrow yes? And if you cant sort it tomorrow, once and for all, then you need to find out WHY.
That's what clever Michaela has done.
Ratino now reacts beautifully in the In Hand lateral work. He is now supple and strong and obedient and willing and engaged in his core and both his hind legs. His engine is now plugged in. Cant turn a light on unless its plugged in eh.
Michaela and Ratino are now following the In Hand work with the ridden work.
They are becoming more engaged, more beautiful, more connected.
Oh yes and therefore Ratino is also taking Michaela forwards with impulsion from behind through the back to the bit with hind legs forward under. That's  'in front of the leg'. 
Michaela has worked incredibly hard on her dressage position, her core, her weaker parts and her symmetry. She is now a much easier rucksack for her beautiful horse to carry as well as a much more effective dressage rider.
Well done Michaela.









Saturday, 27 May 2017

April/May/June 2017



Gorgeous Alfie learning how to sit down behind a bit more in his piaffe on a fantastic two days training with International Olympic judge Stephen Clarke at the TTT (Training the Teachers of Tomorrow) in Guildford.







Jo Billing and Trafalger had an amazing (and intense!) time at their first ever NAF Five Star BD Winter champs at Hartpury for the Novice Silver Freestyle. They have both worked really hard after their second place at the Regionals. A new walk trot and canter have evolved. Only problem is -  due to the extra ground cover in the walk, more suspension and reach in the trot and more straightness and jump in the canter, will the paces still fit the music?!. Thankfully yes as I love the music Jo put together.
Jo said afterwards "That arena is the spookiest and scariest I have ever ridden in and despite two arena walks to acclimatise him, Rhubarb just couldn't cope. Apologies to the poor people I span, leaped at and jumped on during that time... the stewards were having kittens and telling people to avoid the girl on the grey! Never known nerves like it, I seriously thought I wouldn't even get in the arena and almost withdrew. But I got in there with Tracey May Dressage's words of wisdom in my ears (yes they included a few expletives!!!) and only bloody did it. It was tense with a few blips but finished with a score of 67.3%. So proud of this little horse who thought he should have been a Lipizzaner!"
Well done Jo!!!







Charlotte Pedley and the gorgeous mare Jazz had a fabulous ride at the Novice Bronze Area Festival Championships at Hartpury. So proud that Horse & Hound chose their test to go on the Facebook H&H Dressage Page. Next to a rather nice test of another lady called Charlotte on a stunning grey called Florentina! The wonderful international dressage riders of today mixing with the potential international superstars of tomorrow.



  




I am so so so happy. Sophie Watkins and Inca Spirit won the Under 18 Elementary Class at Wellington Area Festival with a fabulous 68.14%!!! They are now qualified for the Area Festival Final in September. It can take a good year to get to know a new young horse and this combination are now working together beautifully as 'one'. There are so many things to work through in that first year. Every season it could be like getting to know a new horse, what do you feed them in spring compared to winter. Do you need to lunge at home before taking a young horse out in winter weather or can you just hop straight on. How long do you warm up for depending on the venue/weather. So much to learn for the rest of our lives together but especially in your first year together. So if your ever struggling, just look at these beautiful photos of Inca and Sophie. Good guidance and perseverance and you will get there too.





A very clever Donna Lockhart and Barney were Reserve Champions in the Wellington Area Festival Prelim Class. I still remember my first lesson with Donna and Barney. What a super job they have done improving to get such a super BD record. And they both still have many tricks up their sleeve to be shown yet. Barney will now happily play in the walk and trot work at Elementary/Medium level and Donna is gently nibbling away at bringing the canter up to this level too. 








Alfie bear is going so well at the moment. I'm a very very lucky girl to have such a willing enthusiastic dance partner.








I'm very pleased with Charlotte Pedley and Jazz moving up to BD Elementary. Here's what Squirrel had to say ..."Amazing day with Jazzie! She came 3rd overall in the Novice on 67.22%, despite the sideways rain (which she wasn't thrilled about). Then we did our first Affiliated Elementary where she won our section and came 3rd overall on 67.50%! Over the moon ." Clever chicks.








I had many happy years training Eilean Appleton before she moved out of the area so she could have the ponies in the back garden. Miss her and Spotty so much as we had great fun as well as seriously on a BD mission. I love it when old clients keep in touch when they move as I only train riders that I love/like/respect/enjoy. This is Eilean and Shakira looking fab at the Elementary Area Festival Championships at Hartpury.







Nicky Reynolds and Indi came 3rd in the Novice at the Wellington Championships! And 2nd in the Music! I don't get to see Nicky as often as I would like to as I struggle with time to get out to yards if there is only one person there having a lesson. Gemma Litchfield trains Nicky on a regular basis and I just pop in whenever I can when I'm in the area. Nicky won my heart many years ago and I will always somehow find the time for this very special, beautiful 'inside and out' young lady. I'm seeing her this week to dance her way round an Elementary. Have your Weetabix Indi!









This is me on my very gorgeous baby pony QT!

Sunday, 5 February 2017

January/February/March 2017




After the nail incident last year, my darling Alfie had a happy and healthy 2016. No competitions for us though as my baby horse had 6 months of castration complications. I spent that time either working to pay the vets bills or visiting QT in hospital and Alfie just got cuddled a lot. But now we are both on our way back to fitness woop woop! Fabulous lessons with Ali Cookson (at the TTT) and Damian Hallam who have now kicked our butts firmly back into canter work and I wake up every morning gagging to go get on my pony and do my homework.

I love this before and after photo of Lauren Holloway on her black beauty. Wow, look at the change in skeletal posture and muscular development particularly in the back behind the saddle.
Seriously good job chick!



Charlotte Pedley and Jazz l have got a wild card for the Novice Petplan Area Festival Championships 2017 at the Winter Nationals at Hartpury after their fabulous test at Wellington Areas last year!

 

Jo Billing and Trafalger are reserve champions at the Merrist Regionals with 71.389% in the Novice Silver Freestyle!
Woopety woop woop of the woopy woops!
Thank god I bought that bottle of cava on the way home! They are off to the BD Winter Nationals!



What a fabulous ride from Sophie Watkins at the Merrist BD Regionals. The very beautiful talented Inca (who has grown from 16.1 to 16.3 in the past year!) was a superstar and took everything in her stride. Sophie rode her best test to date and was rewarded with their personal best % to date under the scrutiny of 3 judges. Very very much looking forward to Elementary now once this beautiful mare has the muscle strength to match her ever growing skeletal frame! So pleased they received the "Best under 25 year old award". The future of tomorrow.

Huge Congratulations to the Priory Team Spa and Rehab centre (Abbie Davies and Marie Edwards) for coming 6th at the Wellington Novice Silver Regionals with the very gorgeous Cynorian Jester. Well done!!!



A cold and wet day at Merrist Wood for Charlotte Pedley's first competition with the lovely Delilah Xl. I am so looking forward to helping these two climb up the BD ladder.



Alfie looking just gorgeous whilst warming up for the Charles De Kunffy clinic in March. He was completely awesome (Charles and Alfie!) and as always felt his best ever on the Lecture Demo after 2 days of fabulous training with Charles

October/November/December 2017

Lauren Holloway is doing such a beautiful job of training her young horse.
I think you can see why I call him Mini Totillas! Here he is at his first competition. 8th out of 25 starters, clever baby pony.


What a gorgeous improvement from Sophie Watkins and Inca. This lovely mare wasn't born with a natural medium trot. Good gymnastic training that Sophie has been doing, progressively engaging the mares hind legs and back resulted in me saying WOW in this months training!



I'm very pleased that Sophie and Inca have qualified for the BD Novice Regionals and will then be moving up the BD ladder to Elementary for spring and Medium by the summer.





A very clever Charlotte Pedley and Jazzie enoying their first BD Elementary!

Sooooooo pleased for Charlotte with her 3rd place at the Wellington Novice Area Festival with 68.33%!


So proud of Nicky Reynolds and Indie now achieving 70% at BD Novice!



Ive had great fun with Sam Watson and Jean Smiths Jebeth Beam Me Up. Reserve Champion at Oldencraig unaffiliated Intro champs!








Louise Garland has trained her beautiful young horse D from an absolute bubba to now good enough for 2nd place in the RC Dressage Area Qualifier with a brilliant 69.55%!


So proud of Katie Patrick and Bertie. I've been training Katie since she was a teenager at school and am so delighted with her riding and Dressage results. BE is her first love but some good BD results are also now on her card at Novice and Elementary!