Lifestyle

Festive Fun With Our Furry Friends.

I don’t know about you but I absolutely love Christmas! I just love everything about it, the Christmas trees, caroles, presents, family time and of course all of the food and drink! But do you ever have amazing ideas that don’t turn out the way you imagined? Here is my comical guide to Christmas with our furry friends.

The Christmas ride. Now I attempted this once with my horse Stanley. I decorated his bridle & I had my Christmas jumper on. We went for a hack & I thought it would be all fun & festive. How wrong was I ?! Firstly Stanley found the tinsel so scary that he didn’t want to move when it was touching him. I did finally drag him out of his stable to go for a lovely ride but of course I was wrong again. Stanley was already very tense because of the scary tinsel but now everyone we passed in cars & on foot stopped to admire us & every time I waved or said something to anyone Stanley took as a que to try and run home. It was also very cold and my Xmas jumper was really itchy.

One Christmas I lovingly prepared a stocking for my horse Cassie. I got my mum to drill through a swede so we could hang it in her stable so Cassie could spend hours playing with it. I bought Cassie a salt lick to put in her new stable too. Both of which she did not get at all. Like no clue. She sniffed them both then ignored them for the remaining weeks I left them in the stable for her. I bought her some treats as well but she only wanted the mint flavoured ones and wouldn’t eat her dinner if I put other flavours of treat in her bucket.

Olympia. When I lived in the UK I loved going to Olympia before Christmas. It was lovely and festive. But my mum & I used to go and spend all of our Christmas money before we got it & then didn’t tell my dad how much we spent.

Donating to a horse charity. Lots of people I know donate to charity during the festive period instead of sending Christmas cards. So why not donate to a horse charity? Well I have sponsored a horse before and was basically taken hostage by the horse I adopted. Because I am far too soft! I would get newsletters and photos of the horse and hear all about how badly he was treated before he was rescued. Then, every time I tried to stop donating as I needed money for my own food, I ended up renewing my adoption but paying more than I originally had done before. I think at one point I ended up sponsoring 2 ponies, bought dog toys for the local dogs home as well as giving £2 a month to cancer research and running a half marathon for water aid! But in all seriousness donating to charity is a good thing if you can afford to do so.

Go to your local boxing day hunt meet. Its nice to see all the horses and riders dressed up ready for the hunt on boxing day. Its particularly nice to go watch them but then go back home and curl up in the warm when they head off! As when I went once it was basically a lot of very posh drunk people on horseback. I honestly don’t know how a lot of them managed to not die that day. Either by falling off their horses or drunkenly driving their lorries home! I’m really hoping that many of them had someone else driving them home.

The Yard Christmas Party. A very important social event as it maybe the only time of year you see the other owners at your yard dressed like normal people. You might not recognise them without straw in their hair or when they are not wearing jodhpurs. Someone you least expect will probably get blind drunk and cause a scene. But at least you can spend one evening looking and smelling nice and have a few glasses of fizz together. Then the next day you resume to being covered in horse poo and ignoring each other whilst mucking out as you are terribly hung over.

And finally going to the stables with your family, Christmas day is a weird day that everyone has more time (unless you are making christmas dinner for everyone) so I like to go to stables with someone that I don’t usually. So that basically meant that I’d go with my dad or my husband and freeze my socks off mucking out alone, while they sat in the warm car telling me to hurry up every time they saw me struggling to carry something heavy past their warm clean car. After mucking out as I was already dirty, I was always nominated to walk the dog too, and without a doubt he would either run off and be lost temporarily while I stood in the field alone in the rain or rolled in something that smells disgusting. It was never exactly what I had in mind!

So there you have it. Do you have any funny festive stories about your horse? Any festive plans with your horse that were more successful than mine?

Remember to join in our #induehorseparty and send me your Xmas pics to post on my Facebook & instagram story, so we can spread some festive spirit. Just tag me using @induehorse.

Have a very merry Christmas everyone and I hope that your festive plans do go to plan with your horses!

Lifestyle

7 Celebrities you didn’t know could ride!

Ok so my one of my guilty pleasures is reading celebrity gossip magazines. I just love reading about the lives of the rich & famous and if they have horses it’s even better! Here are 10 celebrities you may not know can ride…

1) Madonna. When Madonna was living in the U.K whilst married to Guy Ritchie she took up horse riding. She actually took a nasty fall that made the papers at the time as she fell from a horse she was riding that she didn’t know and reportedly broke 8 bones!

Photo- Coleman Rayner

2) Jamie Foxx. He apparently rode his own horse when he starred in Django Unchained. He reported called Quentin Tarantino and asked for the part and said he can ride and has a horse they can use in the film & they did! The horse’s real name is Cheetah but in the film his name is Tony.

Photo credit – FEI

3) Lady Gaga. Lady Gaga was given a horse named Arabella by her record company one Christmas (alright for some eh, I’m yet to receive a horse from my employer). She didn’t know how to ride and it was reported she said she just “grabbed her by the mane and rode her bareback”. She later bought a stallion named Trigger to keep Arabella company and has since bought two miniature ponies. Oh how whimsical!

4) Bella Hadid. When Bella Hadid is not strutting her stuff on the catwalk she is horse riding. She has been riding since she could walk and her mother Yolanda is also a keen horsewoman. Bella has also said that that she rides as a form of stress relief and to relax away from her busy modelling career.

5) Kaley Cuoco. AKA Penny from the Big Bang Theory is an amateur show jumper. She has a whole yard of her own show jumpers and even has some miniature ponies too. Smooshy, her first miniature even has her own Instagram account @lifewithsmooshy! I really enjoy following Kaley’s Instagram account, she seems really nice and seems to be a true animal lover and let’s not forget she has lots of gorgeous horses and dogs and a yard to die for! #lifegoals #iwanttobeyourbestieplease.

6) Johnny Depp. He learnt to ride when he filmed Sleepy Hollow. He had to ride a one eyed horse that he ended up adopting as it was going to be put down after filming. He has since ridden in many other films including ‘Dead Man’, ‘The man who cried’ and ‘Lone Ranger’. In many of his films it is him actually riding and not a stunt man. He actually fell from a cantering horse whilst filming ‘Lone Ranger’ as his saddle slipped. Yikes!

7) Patrick Swayze. I think everyone has fond memories of the now deceased Patrick Swayze from Dirty Dancing. But I bet not many people know that he was a successful Arab horse breeder. Patrick and his wife were described as ‘ horse mad’ and even got their own pilots licences so they could fly back to show their horses more easily when they were away filming.

Photo credit – arabhorse.com

So there you have it. Did you know all these celebrities can ride? Are there any other surprising celeb riders you have heard of? Let me know in the comments if there are.

Click on the links below to shop Amazon.com & you and your horse can feel like celebs yourselves!

Check out my other lists here.

16 Facts You Didn’t know about The Horses in Game of Thrones

My 5 Favourite Disney Horses

10 Facts About The Queen and Her Horses

Did you know Amazon stocks some really cool horse stuff? Click Here to shop!

**Putting it out there – This post contains affiliate links. If you click through and purchase something I will receive a tiny bit of commission. ***

Copyright 2019 http://www.induehorse.com

Lifestyle

My Horsey Adventure So Far…

The subject for Blogtober today is What was your first horse experience? Well, I am from a non horsey family and started riding when I was 5 years old. When I started riding once a week at a local riding school. From the beginning I think it’s fair to say I was obsessed! As a child horses were everything to me and I really did everything else in order to just to be able to go riding after!

Since then horses have always been a part of my life. I have worked at yards, I have owned my own horses, shared horses and ridden for other people. I started doing my BHS exams and got up to my stage 2 certificate as I always intended on being a riding instructor, but then life just ended up taking me another way. I also attended the British Racing School in Newmarket for a whole week, before leaving my horse racing apprenticeship because I just didn’t like it and wanted to come back to spend time with James (my now husband) and my horse Stanley. It’s just funny how things work out sometimes.

There have been times in my that I haven’t ridden at all for various reasons, so I will take you on my horsey adventure full of highs and lows and in particular introduce you to the most important horses in my life….

MONTY

The first pony that stole my heart was Monty. Monty was the first pony I got to know and he was a very naughty riding school pony. He was very cheeky and I remember getting frustrated that I rode Monty week after week until I became fond of him! I have fond memories riding him in my weekly lessons.

CASSIE

At age 12 I got my first pony Cassie, who I bought from my riding school with money that my Gramps had given me in a post office account. Cassie it’s fair to say was very bad tempered and often tried to kick & bite me or anyone else that was near her. That being said we had a pretty successful showjumping career at local shows, went to pony camps and even entered a couple of one day events. I always said we would stand a good chance of winning if Cassie was in the right mood! We actually entered one showjumping class (a weekly event that we had won the previous week) and she did not jump a single jump. We had to leave the ring eliminated at the first fence! Oh chestnut mares eh?!

STANLEY

My second horse was Stanley the horsey love of my life! I bought Stanley when I was 15 years old, he was a thoroughbred that had been trained as a back up horse for a local eventer up to intermediate level. He was 15.1hh but at that time felt enormous and very forward going! He was the sweetest horse you could ever want. He whinnied every day when I arrived at the stables. He was a jumping machine, I would just point him at something and he would jump it. Any height, any width it didn’t matter! Slowing him down enough to aim at the right fence whilst showjumping was a new trick I had to learn. Most photos of me jumping him see my leg swinging backwards as his jump was so big. If he couldn’t feel the stride he would just take off a stride early. He also had a knack for losing shoes! So the farrier was a regular visitor for Stanley!

Unfortunately Stanley died suddenly of a brain aneurysm in 2003. I was absolutely devastated. It was like a nightmare. The worst possible thing had happened completely out of the blue. The loss was immense. I didn’t ride for a year as I just couldn’t bear the thought. At that point I had planned to go and been accepted at Warwickshire College to do a degree in Equine Studies but I didn’t go as I didn’t want to ride anymore if I couldn’t ride Stanley. I actually ended up buying a house with James at that time instead and getting a job at South Glos Council which where I met Sue….

BERT

Now after meeting Sue at work she asked if I wanted to ride her horse Bert as she had two horses and wanted a hand exercising Bert, while she trained for BE on her other horse Spud. It had been about 2 years since my beloved Stanley had died and I had only restarted riding again to do my BHS stage 1 and 2 exams. At that point riding wasn’t fun like it used to be, I needed a purpose to get out and do it again and riding strange horses at a strange riding centre alone was not that fun. But Bert changed all that. Bert got my mojo back! And for that I will always thank him. Bert made me realise there are other horses out there like Stanley. I didn’t need to replace Stanley but riding other horses could be fun. Bert was another jumping machine – I’m now realising I have a type! Bert was just like Stanley point him at a jump and he will jump it, no hesitation no questions asked! Sue had signed me up to Berkeley and District Riding Club so we could go to rallies and competitions together. The first jumping lesson on Bert was fantastic! I jumped 3ft 6 on him the first time I rode him. I remembered that this is what I love to do. Bert and I had a lot of fun together doing rallies, camps and competitions. Bert was a handful on the ground though, I remember him dragging me through the yard on many occasions despite handling him in a chifney bit at all times!

TRIGGER

I shared Trigger with his owner Kaz next as I had started nursing and had moved to another part of Bristol, where I could no longer reach Bert easily.

Trigger was lovely. I enjoyed riding him around the vast amount of fields they had there with my dog Ziggy following us. Trigger had a gorgeous temperament and we just pottered around the farm being content at that point to being happy hackers and doing a few riding club rallies.

I stopped sharing Trigger and concentrated on my nurse training and the only riding I did for the next few years for private lessons at Summerhouse Equitation Centre.

MYA

When I moved to Toulouse in March 2017, I thought that I would love to get back into riding. I am lucky enough to only work part time now and a year after I arrived I was introduced to Mya’s owner Katie by a mutual friend. I have not looked back, I was happy to exercise Mya for Katie as she had explained that she had a serious injury a few years ago but had recovered and she wanted to get her back into proper work. I was pleasantly surprised at how amazing Mya is. Katie has trained her well! I’ve only been riding a Mya since May, but she is just fantastic. At the moment we are working on our flat work and hacking and I hope to start jumping her if Katie allows it!

Now I have never competed at any grand level or claim to know the most about anything horsey. However each of these horses feel like part of my family. Since I’ve started writing this blog I am finding myself going back out to horsey world and wondering why I ever left. I have done things in the last few months just so I can write about them that I should have been doing this entire time as I absolutely love it. I look forward to seeing what is next in my horsey adventure. Please continue to follow the blog and let’s see where we end up!

To check out some other amazing equestrian blogs please go to https://www.timidrider.com/get-ready-for-equestrian-blogtober/

Lifestyle

Female Horse Riders That Inspire Me.

It’s Monday again! But fear not as I am here to motivate you! For Blogtober today it’s our challenge to write something inspiring or motivational to others. So I have chosen to write about the women in the horse world that inspire me. Because Beyoncé said it best – Who run the world? Girls!

Simone Blum

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Simone has been recently crowned as Showjumping World Champion at the World Equestrian Games in September. This is a big deal because she is has sprung up the rankings very quickly making her victory a fantastic surprise to most people. Simone was German Ladies Champion in 2016, She only made her Nations Cup debut in 2017 and became German champion that same year and now World champion in 2018! Wow! If that’s not inspiring I don’t know what is!

It is also a big deal because she is a woman. In a sport where men and women compete against each other as equals. Simone became the first female ever to win the individual showjumping title at the World Equestrian Games. And what I particularly enjoy is that her horse DSP Alice is a mare too! Yes!! Oh and let’s not forget Simone is only 29 years old. That’s a lot to have achieved before your 30th birthday.

Lucinda Green

Photo credit: http://www.countrylife.co.uk

If you follow Eventing Lucinda Green needs little introduction. But just for fun I will remind everyone how awesome she is. A mega inspiration of mine growing up, Lucinda won Badminton Horse Trials a record six times on six different horses. However that is just one of her achievements she has also won Burgley twice, an Olympic silver medal, been world champion twice and European champion five times!! A true queen of the sport.

Charlotte Dujardin

Photo credit: http://www.charlottedujardin.co.uk

Dressage superstar Charlotte ‘The girl on the dancing horse’ started her career as a groom for Carl Hester but he quickly spotted her riding talent.

Charlotte was a triple gold medalist in London 2012 Olympic Games on Valegro. She also went on to win another gold medal at the Rio Olympic Games making her the first British woman to retain an Olympic gold medal title.

Charlotte talked publicly about her mental health struggles following her victories in the London Olympic Games, talking about the price she had paid in her personal life for the victories she had won in her professional life, which made me respect her even more. Top athletes make winning look easy. As most of us know it’s not, but I found Charlotte to be very inspiring being so open about the harsh reality of what it takes to be a professional athlete.

So let’s just stop and think that all these women had to start somewhere. To get to where they ended up they worked hard. That is something we can all do. If you set yourself a goal – go for it! Sometimes things feel completely unachievable & out of reach but they may not be!

I bet Lucinda Green fell off many times before she became a winner at Badminton. I read that Simone Blum likes to plait her horse herself when she competes. Charlotte Dujardin bought her first horse with money she inherited from her grandmother. They are just people too, and hey if they can do we can do it too right? Well obviously a bit of money and a lot of dedication would help too!

So, look at the success of these women and let it spur you on (pardon the horsey pun). We have got this girls! And remember -Who run the world? GIRLS!

Remember to check out other amazing equestrian bloggers on our Equestrian Blogtober blog hop here: https://www.timidrider.com/get-ready-for-equestrian-blogtober/

Lifestyle

My Favourite Equestrian Bloggers and Vloggers of 2018

I am new to equestrian blogging but man am I glad that I have discovered this world! There really is something for everyone. Whether you want tips and information, to follow competitors, or just get to know some other equestrians there are some excellent blogs to follow. Here are my favourites…

The Forelock Journal

This blog is great and it follows the everyday life of Charlotte and Hamish. I love the look of the blog and I feel I can relate to Charlotte as we are both ‘normal’ non equine professionals ( people that don’t work in the horse industry) that aren’t competing at a mega level. It follows their everyday life and Charlotte also has a lifestyle section that features tips, reviews and fashion to name a few.

Check out their blog at http://www.theforelockjournal.co.uk

Mud on My Mulberry

This is a great equestrian fashion blog. Written by Andrea who also owns dogs and horses. For me this website is my inspiration of an more stylish life I could be living! Andrea has a look book on her blog which gives you outfit inspiration and tells you where you can buy it. #fashiongoals

You too can be inspired at http://www.mudonmymulberry.com

The Girl About The Yard

The girl about the yard is on my list because of her excellent instagram stories. Verena talks about horses and anything actually including what is the best toilet paper! It’s witty and a bit of fun and she is in my opinion very likeable!

To see the Instagram stories for yourself follow Verena at @thegirlabouttheyard on instagram.

Diary of a Dun

Georgia AKA Porge blogs/ vlogs about everyday life with her gorgeous dun Barny. Georgia is very likeable and truthful, telling us about the high & lows of her day, which to be honest makes me like her more as not every single day is easy & good particularly when horses are involved! I particularly enjoy Georgia’s Instagram stories. Georgia is starring in this years Omega equine All Star Academy, so be sure to check it out. You can follow Diary of a Dun on Facebook & Instagram.

So, be sure to check out these amazing horsey girls! Also don’t forget that In Due Horse has a Facebook & instagram account too!

For more from The Forelock Journal & Diary of a Dun and even more brilliant equestrian blogs follow our Blogtober blog hop at https://www.timidrider.com/get-ready-for-equestrian-blogtober/

Fun Ideas, Lifestyle

6 Reasons I Love Having a Horse In Autumn

Autumn is actually a great season for riding. It’s not too hot or too cold. I didn’t realise how much I like this season until I wrote this blog for Blogtober last year. So here are my favourite things about autumn…

1) Hacking – I love hacking and it is even better in Autumn because everywhere looks particularly beautiful because of the crunchy orangey brown leaves!

2) Cosy fires – it’s not freezing in autumn but I always looked forward to getting my fire going. It’s so cosy sitting watching TV in front of the fire.

3) Rugby – OK not a horsey one! But my hubby is a rugby fan so I’ve become one too. I really like going to watch the rugby in autumn before it gets too cold. Toulouse is a big rugby city so we really enjoy going to watch Toulouse play.

4) Horses coming in – Even though it meant more mucking out, when I owned my own horses I used to love when they were clipped & came in for winter. Stanley my thoroughbred used to come in on 1st September before the other horses as he was a bit delicate. There’s something about putting down their beds and making their stables all cosy for them!

5) Clipping – I love getting my horses clipped. They always look so smart. I just love the feel of a newly clipped pony!

6) Halloween – as you get to know me you’ll know I love any excuse for a party and Halloween is no exception! I love getting dressed up, the trick or treating, the pumpkins and of course the punch!

What are your favourite things about autumn?

Be sure to follow induehorse on Facebook & @induehorse on instagram.

 

Lifestyle

My Horse Mya’s Must Haves for Autumn.

I must admit I have it very easy. I share Mya with her owner Katie who is the best person to share anything with as she is so nice & so laid back. Mya lives out in a wonderfully big paddock with Katie’s other horse Jazz who is retired. The yard where Mya is kept is fantastic as they feed & top up her water each day. She is bare foot so no losing shoes etc so we definitely have a good thing going on!

Despite living the French dream. My list of autumn essentials that Mya cannot do without are…

1) Bot egg knife. I seem to be using this a lot at the moment! I might be imagining it but there seems to a lot of bot eggs around at the moment & I don’t know about you but I have my bot egg removal technique down now!

2) Fly repellent. You see a theme here! So Mya’s main problem in life are flies. We get horrible mosquitos, hornets, crab flies & horse flies in France to name a few. Bearing in mind Mya is also British she has adapted to the heat & everything else here in France well apart from the flies. In the summer she had to wear a fly mask, hood & rug as she gets so upset when she is bitten by any flies that she goes crazy, it’s like she is possessed by an evil spirit or something dangerously rearing, pulling & running away doing anything she can to get away. So Katie also has industrial strength fly repellent that smells like tar & Mya still always wears a fly mask.

3) A thoroughly good groom. Mya is malting at the moment so every time I ride I give her a good brush before & after I have ridden. This gets out all that pesky malting hair. It still pretty warm here so none of the horses are clipped yet, our winter doesn’t really kick in until November.

4) Carrots. It’s fair to say Mya loves her food! So I make sure I take her carrots, basically because I spoil her rotten & buy her love with carrots!

To see more of Mya & me check out our Facebook page induehorse & @induehorse on instagram too.

For more brilliant equestrian blogs also participating in Blogtober visit https://www.timidrider.com/blog/equestrian-blog-hop/

Bonne weekend! 🦄

Lifestyle

My Horsey Must Haves For Autumn

Ok so it’s October – winter is coming! Here are my autumn must have items, now as I am writing this it is currently 26 degrees here in France, so I’m having to use my imagination a bit!

1) Long socks. I don’t know about you but I’m a cold person! I always feel cold. I love wearing a normal pair of socks then a long pair of socks over the top of them that go right up to my knees. That way I never want to take them off as I am so warm! The jazzier the pattern the better!

2) My new Black Heart hoody. I have recently discovered Black Heart & I just love all of their riding gear. I bought a pair of their riding leggings & a hoody & absolutely love them. The hoody is so comfy & warm. Perfect for autumn riding as it zip fronted so you can undo it if you get too hot when you are riding.

Excuse the bags under my eyes. I got up at 5.30am this morning to drive my hubby to work. 😴

3) Moisturiser. I hate having dry skin but I always get it when the season changes between summer & autumn. I must have face moisturiser, currently I’m using one from Sephora. Hand cream , a favourite of mine is Hand Food from Soap & Glory and lip balm, I particularly like Bert’s Bees.

4) Le Chameau wellies. These wellies are the best! I love them! They are so warm and really comfy. They are pricey but I personally think they are totally worth it. Perfect for around the yard and dog walking.

5) Red wine. I personally don’t like drinking red wine in the summer, I’m more of a rose girl then but when the weather gets cooler it is lovely to enjoy a nice glass of red. Cheers to that eh?!

So I hope everyone enjoys their autumn! Don’t you just love the crunchy leaves & Halloween?! Tomorrow I will blog about Mya’s autumn must haves.

To hear more from me be sure to like Induehorse on Facebook & follow @induehorse on Instagram.

For more cool equestrian blogs to follow check out this link Equestrian BLOGTOBER – The Timid Rider

Lifestyle

Tip Tuesday. Have a Little Confidence!

Ok so my tip today is not specific to horses but a general tip you can use in everyday life. It is don’t be too hard on yourself. It’s easy to compare yourself to other people but you know what we all have different strengths, weaknesses & goals. We live in the age of social media, so you can portray anything you want on your social media accounts. I’ve looked at other equestrian blogs & thought perhaps there is no point in starting mine. I’m not competing at a mega level. Actually I’m not competing at all at the moment so will people find me interesting? I’ve just started riding again after a gap of several years, so am I as good as the other girls? I feel like I don’t look as pretty as the other girls in my old riding clothes that are practical & functional. But you know what I did it anyway! I bought some new riding clothes & got out there! I was so pleased that some of my friends took the time to message me to say how much they liked my blog and more importantly I love my blog and enjoy writing it.

Happy Tuesday everyone!

For more from me please follow the induehorse Facebook page & @induehorse instagram account.

To check out the equestrian blogs in the blog hop visit https://www.timidrider.com/get-ready-for-equestrian-blogtober/

Lifestyle

Hey There Sport!

The same goes for all sports, the fitter you are the easier and better you can become at it right? This is also the case for riding. So here are some examples of sports you could try to improve your strength and fitness for riding.

Sometimes you just don’t feel like exercising but I promise it will be worth the effort in the end! This is me on a ‘short’ hike!

Yoga

Now research shows yoga can be good for everyone. It can be particularly good for riders as it addresses the person as a whole. It helps balance the mind, body and emotions. It could be used to de-stress you before you ride so you are calmer and more relaxed before you even arrive at the stables! This maybe particularly good for nervy riders as yoga may give you a bit of mental clarity or just generally relax you before you ride. Yoga may also aid your riding position too, as practicing yoga will make you more aware of how your body moves, it helps you with your core strength and also is helpful for strengthening the muscles for elongating the spine.

There are many types of yoga – bikram, hatha, vinyasa, ashtanga and hot yoga to name a few. Don’t let this put you off try a few different studios, styles and teachers and choose the one that suits you. I can tell you I took a yoga class for about a year before I moved to France. I’d dabbled before and gone to classes that I didn’t enjoy and had started to think perhaps yoga isn’t for me, but then I tried the yoga class at my gym and I loved it! The teacher was very spiritual (I am not a spiritual person) , however she was so inspiring and comforting. I had just started working as a newly qualified nurse and I was having a stressful time of it. I looked forward to my weekly yoga class as it chilled me right out! I would recommend it for sure as sometimes the world does get a bit much and sometimes you just need to do a few sun salutations and lay in a dark room with incense burning and hear some relaxing words from your yoga teacher. Namaste-neigh!

Pilates

Now I am a big Pilates fan! Anyone that knows me knows I recommend it and am always talking people into starting Pilates. Pilates improves your strength, flexibility and balance. To be a good rider you need good posture as you need to stay balanced on an unpredictable moving horse. To have good posture you need strong back muscles and strong abdominal muscles. Pilates is great a strengthening your core and it is also very good for your arm and leg muscles and all of your muscles actually!

Running

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Ok everybody knows that cardiovascular exercise is good for you and for riding in particular it is good for stamina and it strengthens your legs muscles and can help you concentrate on your breathing which will help you when you are riding too. I personally enjoy a run, I’ve found that it is excellent for weight loss or maintaining your weight. It improves your general fitness which then will help in other sports that you participate in. It is also excellent for your mental health, giving you a chance to clear your head and have half an hour to yourself. Sometimes I really don’t feel like running but nothing beats the feeling of when you are finished and you get a real endorphine release making you feel happy and relaxed and less guilty about eating that chocolate bar! So go grab your trainers!

Boxing

Boxing is a high intensity full body workout. It is ideal for riders as when you are learning to punch you will also develop your leg muscles, core muscles and balance. For riders it is also good for your reaction training. Horses are unpredictable much like a boxing opponent, so it teaches you to be aware of your surroundings so you are able to avoid and block punches as well as returning them when they least expect it! There are many boxercise classes in gyms now and many gyms have boxing rings so give it a go- I know I’d like to! Go on! Pretend that punch bag is your boss!

Riding

I know you are thinking this is an article about getting fit to ride, but you know what it’s like any sport the more you do it the better you get at it! If you ride regularly your body will get used to the muscles you use and it also is excellent for your confidence, as the more horses you ride and more experience you gain the more confident rider you become! As they say practice makes perfect or in our case less saddle sore!

Swimming

Last but not least is swimming. My hubby used to swim competitively so has got me into swimming to a whole new level. I even went to a swimming fitness class which was very serious lane swimming with a scary swimming club coach shouting at us for an hour. I honestly didn’t realise you could sweat whilst swimming until then! I never made it higher than the slowest lane of swimmers but it made me appreciate how good swimming is for you. Swimming is excellent for your posture as you cannot swim well without good posture much like riding. It is also good for loosening muscles that you can’t quite get to with stretching. It is also excellent for your breathing control and is good for relaxation too (if you don’t go to the shouty lane swimming session).

So I hope I have inspired you to get out there and give some of these sports a go!

#thisgirlcan #thisgirlisonfire #doihaveto