Top Tips

Keep Cool and Carry on! My Summer Tips for You and Your Horse.

I have had a steep learning curve since moving to the South of France about keeping cool during the summer. As I sit here in my apartment right now it is 35 degrees celsius and it is 8pm! I do get used to it, however the first week of each summer is tough!

I would like to share with you some of my top tips for keeping you and your horse cool this summer.

1. WATER WATER WATER! Don’t under estimate how much water you need. The National Health Service recommends that we drink 1.2 litres of water a day and that we may need up to 2.5 litres when the weather is hot. Our horses need between 5 -15 gallons of water per day.

Chilly’s bottles keep your water cold all day.

Get your Chilly’s Bottles here! Keeps Cold for 24+ Hrs, Hot for 12 Hrs

2.  Sun Protection. I always like to look tanned. However in trying to get brown I used to get sun burnt quite often. Now, I have discovered sun protection tops and have not looked back. I always ride in one now, I have an Ariat one and a Equetech one and they are both great. They are long sleeved tops that have lace down the underside of the arms to keep you cool and I swear by them. No more getting sunburnt and you don’t feel too hot either. I forget I’m not wearing a t-shirt! I bought my Equetech one pictured below from Boudica Equestrian

3. Sun tan lotion. If you can’t resist getting your skin out then make sure you are plastered in sun tan lotion. I wear it EVERYDAY in Toulouse. It’s part of my morning routine. I have recently started using factor 50 as my Spanish friends couldn’t believe that I was only using factor 30 and I have a nice tan and have not been burnt once. I definitely recommend!

4. More protection from the sun. At the stables I also always wear a cap apart from when I am riding, when obviously I wear my helmet! Protect your face. Nobody wants a leather face!  You also may have noticed if you follow me on instagram that I also always wear sun glasses. I cannot bear to squint. Perhaps they aren’t the best to ride in (not my fashion ones anyway as I always have to stop them falling off my face) but they are great for when you aren’t riding. Make sure you buy glasses that have UV protection – be aware that not all glasses have that.

5. Fly Protection. With the heat comes the flies.  Mya is so sensitive to flies she wears a fly rug and a fly mask every day in her field.  Maybe not all horses need that but I would deffo advice a fly mask and to find a good anti fly spray as a minimum. I can’t imagine how uncomfortable it is for them to be covered in flies. Also in France I need mozzy spray too for myself. I cover myself before I go to the stables (or anywhere else) and  I also  place citronella candles on the window ledges of my apartment to keep the mosquitoes away.

6. Pick when to ride carefully. I can only really ride in the morning here. As the evenings are the hottest part of the day. But obviously this would not suit everyone. Plan your day accordingly. Did you know that according to Practical Horseman Magazine horses can sweat up to  3-5 gallons of water a day?!

7. More water. I always hose Mya down if she is really sweaty. Horse and Hound have published research showing that it is perfectly fine to hose your horse down and not scrape the water off, as there was a popular belief that hosing a horse and leaving water on him would make him hotter – wrong! Also I find a cold shower works wonders for humans too. If you don’t want a full cold shower, I frequently just shower off my feet with cold water and I find that really cools me off.

8. Fans. Only rely on fans & air conditioners if it is exceptionally hot. I do not normally use a fan or air con in my apartment and this allows my body to actually get used to the heat. If you constantly sit in front of a fan it’s refreshing but it doesn’t allow your body to get used to the heat.  When there is a heat wave here of course I use a fan but I try to avoid it at home if possible. At work and in the car is a different ball game – I deffo need it in the car and if you are busy at work it would be impossible to be productive if you are sweating your bits off! I am just talking lounging at home here!

9. Shade. Mya lives out all year. But she does have a field shelter where she can hide from the sun or the rain. She uses it a lot! Her owner has even fitted a little fan in her field shelter. If your horse does not have a shelter, he should definitely have trees to hide under to escape the sun. The same for humans. I always walk in the shade and avoid the sun for most of the day if I can. If I am outside, I always sit in the shade as it is just too hot otherwise. Seek out those shady spots! You won’t regret it!

10. Keep your windows shut. If the temperature reaches above 30 degrees, it is actually hotter outside than it is inside. This felt really unnatural for me as a brit who craved the sun, however now in the summer the windows are shut and so are my shutters. It really does keep my apartment cooler. The windows can be opened before 10am and after 9pm (but be careful of mozzy’s in the evenings) but the rest of the day, I leave the place in darkness even if I am there! It feels weird at first, but you will get used to it.

I hope you have found my top tips for keeping you and your horse cool useful. Let me know if you have any ideas of your own in the comments!

For more top tips check out

My 6 Top Tips For Remembering Your Dressage Test

My top tips for new horse owners

**Putting it out there: In this post some of the links included in this are affiliate links, meaning at no cost to you if you click through and make a purchase I will make a tiny bit of commission.**

Copyright of Louise Dando & In Due Horse 2019.

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Inspo Interviews

Inspo Interview #5 Zoe Boyd That Sassy Rider

This month I have the pleasure of introducing you to Zoe Boyd That Sassy Rider as our Inspo Interviewee. Zoe is an Equestrian blogger on Instagram and facebook. Her pages follow her progress with her new mount ‘Princess Brian’ as they start competing together.

I reached out to her to be part of the Inspo Interviews because of a really honest blog post I had seen she had written recently for Equissimo a brand of whom she is an ambassador for. It was about some bad personal circumstances that she has been going through. It was so honest and raw but she wrote with such tact and warmth that I respected her even more than I did before. Zoe is not only a cool person and a great rider  but a great role model to her online followers! I urge you to follow her if you don’t already.

  1. What inspired you to start your instagram account/ blog?

It’s not really inspiration but I did it to stop boring my friends and family on Facebook as I used to spam my page with all things horsey! I then realised that there were a lot of people out there that have a geniune interest in how you have been getting on with your horse. So I created all my social media handles. I find it lovely to part of an online community.

2. Who do you look to for inspiration and why?

I don’t particularly have one person that I look up to it’s more of a group of people who keep me inspired. I love seeing how people are achieving their goals and staying positive with their set backs.

3. What would you say is your biggest achievement to date?

My biggest achievement would be competing at the showjumping National Championships 2 years ago. I genuinely thought it was a once in a lifetime thing…until this year on my new horse Brian, I have managed to qualify again for show jumping AND Combined training. I couldn’t make the Show jumping nationals this year though as they were two weeks after the qualifiers and Nationals was about 300 miles away from me. Thankfully I am able to compete at The Festival of The Horse in May.

4. What would be your best piece of advice you could give someone who is feeling a bit uninspired at the moment?

Behind every rider there has been some level of pain or upset. You still have the passion inside to get back to it after a knock back, you just need to get your butt back in the saddle and remember how the good days feel.

5. What are your plans for this year and what do you hope to achieve?

This year I’m hoping to just bond more with Princess Brian, so far we have been quite successful in a short amount of time. Once we have full trust in one another Im hoping to up the ante and compete at a higher level.

Follow Zoe @thatsassyrider on facebook & instagram.

Incase you missed it. Check out last month’s Inspo Interview here. Inspo Interview #4 Poppy from Young Hip & Horsey

Copyright of In Due Horse and Louise Dando. Photo credit Zoe Boyd unless otherwise stated.

Fun Ideas

My 5 Favourite Disney Horses

OK admittedly less serious than my normal posts. But who doesn’t love Disney films?! I am a massive fan! I loved them when I was a child and I still love them now. So I thought I would compose a list of my favourite Disney horse characters. Take a look to see your favourite makes the list.

Frou Frou from Aristocats

Now, Aristocats is one of my absolute favourite Disney films. It is one of the classics and for me that is part of the appeal. The animation is all scratchy and it is based in France! Anyway Frou Frou is a friend of Duchess and the kittens who get kidnapped by their owner’s horrible butler when he realises their rich owner is leaving all of her money to her cats in her will. Frou Frou actually is the one who helps capture Edgar the butler at the end of the film when she kicks him into a trunk heading to Timbucktu!

Phillipe from Beauty and the Beast.

Phillipe is the horse Belle rides up to the beast’s castle and when she escapes from the beast. He is kind and sweet and he tries to look after Belle. He also warms to the beast when he shows his softer side to Belle. Another one based in France!

 

Maximus from Tangled

Maximus is more like a big dog than a white stallion but he is very funny! He is arch enemies with Flynn Ryder but he later becomes his best friend to help Rapunzal return to her family.

Bulls Eye from Toy Story 2

Bull Eye is Woody’s horse in Toy Story 2. He is a horse but acts like an excitable puppy as he has been in storage for years. He loves Jessie & Woody & he is part of Woody’s round up gang. He helps Woody and Buzz rescue Jessie by running as fast a plane when they escape from Stinky Pete.

Sitron from Frozen.

Sitron is Hans’ horse and side kick. He holds the boat steady when Hans and Ana first met and is ridden by Hans up to Elsa’s castle. I just love his mane!! 

Do you have a favourite? Is it on the list? Let me know in the comments!

 

AD: Did you know Amazon sell an excellent supplies for your horse? Click here to shop Horse stuff

 **Disclaimer this is an affiliate link. At no cost to you if you click through and make a purchase I will make a tiny bit of commission. *** 

Please also remember to check out In Due Horse on Instagram & Facebook @induehorse. Copyright 2019 of Louise Dando & In Due Horse.

 

Equestrian Events

My Weekend at Badminton

Well, what a weekend! I just absolutely love Badminton! I was lucky enough to be able to fly back from France for a long weekend to catch up with all of the action of the Cross Country and Show jumping.

On the Saturday, I went with my besties Hannah & Jo (they are not horsey but they know how much I am into it). We arrived nice and early and did a spot of shopping. I bought an Ariat Sun Stopper shirt that I had my eye on and was particularly chuffed that I could fit into an XL childs size which saved me £15! We watched the Shetland Grand National, which was just so entertaining. Some of them sped around the course, whilst others poodled along behind or even cut through the middle of the course! Then headed over to the Thatchers stand, where we sampled their new rosé cider which was rather nice!

We then headed out onto the Cross Country course. Incase you missed it you can see an interactive map of the full course here. I had read that the course was big and as difficult as ever. Our first stop was of course the Lake! It was fairly rammed full of people like normal. But we did manage to see Oliver Townend come through. When I was watching the horses and riders come through the lake, there was so many people watching, a few possibly waiting for someone to fall into the water and I thought how scary it must be for those riders! They must have nerves of steel!

We wandered past Badminton House and took our obligatory selfies and managed to see William Fox Pitt come flying past us. We then followed the course, stopping at the Young minds bushes, and the Feed Haywain. Next we went over to Nye Timber Heights, this was a good jump to spectate at as it was raised, so I managed to get a few shots of one of my fav’s Ben Hobday and Wizard over this one. I particularly enjoyed Ben’s whoop of delight as they galloped away.

We stayed here for most of the afternoon, as we queued for a long time to get something to eat. Note to self take a picnic next time. We thought about it but decided to take our drinks instead. But it took a big chunk of our afternoon away. By the time we had walked down to the loo’s at the far end of the course, came back, queued for a LONG time for some expensive, mediocre & quite frankly small portions of noodles and then sitting to eat that.  It worked out well though as we had a drink whilst sitting in the sunshine and then were able to meet fellow blogger and my instagram buddy Becky aka @becksbackinthesaddle at the Mirage Water.

We then headed back to The World of Food & Drink, which was located in its normal spot but not in a tent this year. We tasted all sorts of things including  honey whiskey, vodka, cheese and even some spices and balsamic vinegar!

We had a fabulous day and really soaked up the ambience. I just love seeing all the dogs and the fashion. I think I appreciate everything more now I have moved abroad. It definitely feels very English. You don’t see much tweed in France!  It was a great day out with my friends but was over so quickly. They say time flies when you are having fun! Luckily for me I returned to Badminton the next day. This time with my mum Margaret and Sister Ellen.

Now, we are some what veterans of Badminton, having been many times before. So although still relaxed (a coffee break and a(nother) cider stop were also squeezed in). We knew exactly what we wanted to see and do. After not seeing all the shops on Saturday or many horses for that matter! The Sunday let me get my horsey fix! We started in The World of Food for breakfast and then visited nearly every shop Badminton had to offer. We were mainly looking as none of us actually have our own horses at the moment, which does help your bank balance from taking a massive hit. However I made sure I got some Fudge from The Fudge Kitchen ( if you live in the west they have a shop in Bath & the fudge is to die for) and some really strong cheddar cheese to take back with me to France! I was able to find some Halloumi as well for lunch furthering my quest for food to eat that I can’t find in France.

Then came the show jumping. I absolutely love the nervous excitement of the show jumping arena. We watched the top twenty jump the course, which actually gave a few of the horses a tough time. With only 9 clear rounds in the top twenty the tension was really mounting by the time Christopher Burton came in to ride to keep his third position. After shocking the crowd with the only refusal of the afternoon on Graf Liberty, the tension hung in the air until Piggy French came in and did a beautiful clear round! The crowd went wild and it seemed that everyone in the grandstands felt so pleased to see her pure joy, she kept pointing to her horse Vanir Kamira and just couldn’t seem to believe that she had gone clear! It was quite emotional actually.  Then came in Oliver Townend, the commentator announced he could have one fence down but not two to keep his position. I’m personally not a fan of his but thought it was unlikely he wouldn’t win. However, he knocked one down, everyone gasped but I thought he had still won. Once he had finished there were a few seconds of mumblings and confusion in the grandstand until it was announced that Piggy French had won because Oliver Townend had knocked one down and incurred a few time penalties. The crowd went wild! What a result! So so pleased for Piggy French!

Results

1st. Piggy French & Vanir Kamira

2nd. Oliver Townend & Ballaghmor Class

3rd. Christopher Burton & Cooley Lands

4th. Christopher Burton & Graf Liberty

5th.  Andrew Nicholson & Swallow Springs

6th. Oliver Townend & Cillnabradden Evo

7th. Kristina Cook & Billy the Red

8th. Imogen Murray & Ivar Gooden

9th. William Fox-Pitt & Little Fire

10th. Tim Price & Ringwood Sky Boy.

For more information about Badminton head to their website.

So, what a weekend! I will be definitely coming back next year. I have my sights set on all of the days next year and definitely want to go on one of the course walks.

Did your favourite win? Were you there too? Let me know in the comments below.

Here is a link to my previous blog about my fav riders that competed at Badminton.

Be sure to follow @induehorse on Facebook & instagram.

Copyright of Louise Dando & In Due Horse 2019.

 

 

 

 

 

Equestrian Events, Places to Visit

Badminton 2019. The Riders I Will Be Cheering On.

Badminton is upon us! The most exciting weekend in the eventing calendar.

We are currently on the morning of cross country day. I will be heading out to the course today to watch the best horses & riders in the world compete for £100,000 prize they will receive and of course a lot of kudos if they are crowned the winner at Badminton.

Photo – Badminton Horse Trials logo

I absolutely love the thrill of cross country. It makes me nervous just watching these horses and riders leap over the gigantically frightening jumps. Part of me thinks the riders must be mad and part of me wants to have a go myself!

I am very excited to see the top riders compete today. I am a frequent visitor to Badminton as I was lucky enough to grow up 20 mins down the road and I think Badminton is still my favourite weekend of the year as I love it more and more each year. I’ve missed the last few years, due to living in France now but enough was enough and I needed my Badminton fix!

Photo by William Carey for The Gaitpost

Currently in the lead and in second place is Oliver Townend. Now, I’m sorry but I am not a fan of his. Despite his very successful career I cannot get past his numerous tellings off from BE about the way he rides and treats his horses. To me he seems overly competitive to the point that he will risk his horses welfare to win. Simply put he is a great rider but I do not think he is a good horseman. I wish him not harm but would prefer it if someone else won! Although he has broken the record this year with the best dressage score in the history of Badminton, which does put him in a very strong position.

The riders I will be cheering on are…

Photo from Ben Hobday’s Instagram

For Great Britain, Ben Hobday. A popular choice, due to him being very charismatic and seemingly good guy who loves his horses and is a cancer survivor – what a hero! He is currently in 23rd position after the dressage. I will be cheering him on for sure!

Photo from Emily King’s Instagram

My other fav is Emily King, daughter of everyone’s heroine Mary. I just think the King’s are great riders and horse women. I am part of Emily’s Team Hobby syndicate and I wrote one of my first ever blogs about that. I plucked up the courage to send it to her and she emailed back saying thank you for writing a great blog! How nice is that?! She is currently 21st on Dargun.

Photo from Clara Loiseau’s Instagram

I will also be cheering on Clara Loiseau of France (my home country these days) as I saw her compete at Pau last year, where she came 3rd. She is an upcoming rider that I think will do well. She is currently lying 41st on Wont Wait.

I hope everyone has a great weekend watching Badminton there or at home.

Who do you want to win? Let me know in the comments!

Fun Ideas

5 French Riders You Need To Watch This Season!

I absolutely love living in France. I love speaking French and learning about French culture. I love the lifestyle here and the food and you know what France has some pretty bad ass horses and riders too! Here are the French horse riders that you need to know about this season.

1) Thibault Fournier.

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Photo from Thibault Fournier Facebook page. 

Thibault Fournier is an eventer, who won Pau 4* in October with Sinani de Lathus despite it being his first competition at that level. He is only 24 years old and is aiming towards the European Championships in August, 2019.  I saw him at Pau and he seems to absolutely adore his horse. He is definitely someone to watch for the future.

Fun Fact: Thibault is training to be a physiotherapist along side his riding career!

2) Astier Nicholas

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Despite only being 30 years old. Astier Nicolas has had a very successful eventing career already. He has competed successfully at all of the major events including Badminton, Burghley, Pau and Bramham, winning Pau in 2015. He is a double Olympic medalist after winning team gold with France and individual silver in Rio de Janerio in 2016.

Fun Fact: Astier has a degree in Equine Management from Hartpury College and lived in the UK for many years. He has now returned to France and is living in Normandy.

3) Thomas Carlisle

Thomas Carlisle is one to watch! He has been progressing very well over the last few years. Thomas’ BE results are impressive and consistent even though he only started to compete at high level competition a few years ago.  Despite this, and his mount Upsilon being the youngest horse in the competition, they won the Event Masters in Bleinham CCI*** in 2016 and they have been doing well since with their last win being Barbury CIC*** in 2018.

Sadly though Tom posted on Facebook last week that their 2019 season has not started well.  Upsilon has contracted a nasty virus which had left him fighting for his life. So we are sending good thoughts and really hoping Upsilon is making a speedy recovery.

Fun Fact – Thomas Carlisle was born and lives in France but has English parents. He went to school in Toulouse and a friend of mine knows him!

4) Penelope Levropost

Photo by thomasreiner.pro

Penelope is a successful French show jumper and has had a very successful career competing in numerous World and European championships, including winning a silver medal in the World Cup in Las Vegas in 2015 and winning olympic gold at Rio de Janerio in 2016 to name a couple of her achievements. She also has her own boutique Penelope-store.com that sells riding equipment for horse and rider and is a single mother to her daughter Eden.

Fun Fact: Penelope has become a bit of an internet sensation with a following of 142k on instagram!

 

5) Morgan Barbancon Mestre

Grand Prix Dressage rider Morgan was born in France but actually rode representing Spain until May 2018. Her father is French and her mother is Spanish but she actually lives in Switzerland. Morgan represented Spain at the 2012 Olympic Games, 2014 World Equestrian Games, 2015 World Cup Finals and 2015 European Championships on Painted Black, but has chosen to represent France to continue to compete at the higher levels of competition. That successfully started with Morgan winning the French Grand Prix Championship in 2018.

Fun Fact: Morgan was born in France, lived in Germany, Holland and now is hoping to develop dressage in the french speaking part of Switzerland. Talk about being European!

Remember to follow In Due Horse on Facebook & Instagram @induehorse

Copyright 2019 http://www.induehorse.com

Fashion, Reviews

Louise’s March Look Book Part 2 – Dreamers & Schemers socks

This week my look of the week goes to Dreamers and Schemers socks!

I received a pair as a Christmas gift and I love them! They are like long pop socks really, as they don’t have any seams. They are thin and comfortable and they have such cool patterns on. I picked this pastel pattern with unicorns and rainbows on, but there are all sorts of funny designs you can choose from avocados, goats and boobs just to name a few!

To grab yourself a pair head to the Dreamers & Schemers website you won’t regret it!

Let me know what design you choose if you do get a pair!

Louise XX

Fashion

Louise’s March Look Book Part 1 – Black Heart Equestrian & Ariat

Equestrian fashion has come a long way since I was a kid. It’s something I absolutely love and each week I wish I had an unlimited budget to buy more and more boots, tops, jodhpurs and accessories to ride in that I have seen online. I am sure I am not the only one!

So I have decided to start ‘Louise’s Look Book’ so I can share my fashion inspiration with you all! Whether it be items I want to purchase or have purchased (none are paid or gifted – I would state that if this is the case). Also I thought it would be a cool way to find out about new brands or companies that you may not have heard of.

So to kick off this new feature I am going to start with 2 items that I absolutely love! Black Heart Equestrian Flex leggings and Ariat Grasmere H20 boots.

I have spoken about the Black Heart Flex leggings on the blog before – check out the review I did here. They are so comfortable and practical and come in plum (as pictured), black, burgundy, grey, royal blue, olive, teal and mauve. They are very flattering and they have a handy phone pocket on the side. They are available at blackheartequestrian for £40.

Ariat Grasmere H20 are THE most comfortable boots I have ridden in! I borrowed my friend’s as my boots broke one day and I am so glad I did! They are soft and you can really feel your horse’s side without the boots feeling thin. They have laces down the sides which are so pretty and are waterproof too. They are available at ariat for £270.

Also pictured my hat is by Just Togs and top by Zara.

Louise x

News

Danielle Goldstein – So Much More Than The Girl With Feathers In Her Hair

Danielle  Goldstein
Photo by Kathy Russell

We are in the year 2019. We live in a modern society where our differences can be celebrated and respected more and more. However when it comes to Equestrianism does anyone feel that our sport is a bit left behind? Don’t get me wrong, the sport is full of strong women competing against men as equals and that is something to be proud of. It’s just that I feel that it is still expected for everyone to think and dress a certain way. Until now…

I have recently discovered someone that everyone needs to know about ( I may be a bit late to the party but hey). The woman with feathers in her hair. The woman who is a professional show jumper but will be wearing yoga pants and a belly top walking the course and looking fricking cool doing it. The woman who Heels Down Magazine called ‘a rebel with a cause’. It’s Danielle Goldstein.

The articles that drew my attention to Danielle were articles focussing on her appearance. Sure, Danielle has a very unique look. Particularly for a show jumper. But her story is about so much more than that…

Danielle was born in America and grew up in a non horsey family in New York City. She only started riding when she was a child because her friend invited her to ride her horse. After that it was fair to say she dedicated herself to riding. Goldstein, decided on her first trip to Israel at age 12 for her Bat Mitzvah, that she wanted to represent Israel and went on a quest to start an Israeli Show Jumping team.

World of Showjumping reported that after moving to Israel for a short period in 2010 and having lots of friends of family there she applied for and successfully obtained Israeli citizenship. Riding for Israel is something Danielle had always wanted to do . Firstly because she felt that she had a deep connection to the country and secondly because she wanted to help a country that she felt did not get much positive attention in the global media.

Photo by Noelle Floyd

Based in the Netherlands with her partner Alan Waldman, she actually trains half the year in Holland and half of the year at her yard in Florida. Her website Star Wyns Farm states that Danielle firmly believes that there is much to done in terms in impacting Israeli society through Equestrian sports. Danielle has started ‘The International Equestrian Education Series’ from her base from Florida, with a hope to starting a series in Israel too. As she feels young people can learn all sorts of transferable skills such as responsibility, attention to detail and the importance of hard work through her training to encourage a stronger equestrian culture in Israel.

Danielle’s dream is to be the first female Israeli olympic show jumper. Since gaining her Israeli citizenship it’s going well. Global Champions Tour reported that She lead the first Israeli show jumping team in the European Championships in 2013 and again in 2015 & 2017 and since then has competed in 2 world Equestrian Games in 2014 and 2018. She has had success on the Longines Global Champions Tour with her chestnut mare Lizzymary. Winning the Grand Prix class in Portugal in 2017. Danielle also served as the Chef d’equipe for the gold medal winning team in the Maccabiah Games dubbed ‘The Jewish Olympics’ in 2013.

Photo by Sportfot

However Danielle has had her fair share of criticism. Mainly about the way she looks. Noelle Floyd reported that people online accused her feathers of being a safety hazard and a insult to the traditions of showjumping. Danielle took to the internet herself to tackle these cyber bullies and had a strong message ” It’s good to be different – there is no reason we all have to look the same”.

I don’t know about you but I think we could do with more Danielle Goldstein’s in Equestrian sport! She is a fantastic role model and I absolutely love her feathers!

Danielle will be competing for the Scandinavian Vikings in the 2019 Global Champions Show jumping league. For more information head to Global Champions League teams

Copyright 2019 http://www.induehorse.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Fun Ideas, Top Tips

My 6 Top Tips For Remembering Your Dressage Test

The Eventing season is just around the corner. Your horse is clipped, fit and ready to go. You have mentally prepared yourself for the season ahead. Half scared half excited. You have carefully selected your events, you have maxed out your time and your money to be able to compete this season so you want to do the best you can.

But I don’t know about you I really struggle to remember my dressage tests. I am historically a show jumper, however as I have grown older I have liked the challenge of being an all-rounder. I have now done a few riding club dressage tests and even a couple of one day events, with varying success. I can for some reason remember my jumping courses easily, however with dressage I am useless at remembering my tests. At my first one day event with my pony Cassie I forgot my dressage test twice and the horror of that Judge’s car horn beeping twice haunts me to this day. Since that day I must have a caller every time and that is just not possible sometimes. Even with a caller you still need to be able to remember what move is next to make sure you can do the test the best you possibly can.

So, You want to be the next Charlotte Dujardin? Here are my 6 top tips for remembering your dressage test. I have found best results need patience and a good sense of humour too!

Mya please remember the test for me! 

1. Walking your test on foot. This is a very effective way of making you look like a complete nut case! But I have found it to be very effective. The best way to do this is take the ‘Dance like no one is watching’ approach and pretend you are riding but do the test on foot. I mean walk, trot and canter on your own two feet as if you are your horse. Practical Horseman Mag suggest this way is particularly good for kids!   This also is a good way to repeat the movements of the test without your clever pony getting bored or thinking they know a better way. It can be done in the actual arena or any made up arena in your lounge/ car park/ office etc.

2.  Drawing your test on paper or on a white board. Dressage4All suggest another personal favourite of mine. Just draw out an arena with the markers in the correct place on a washable white board or a piece of paper and draw the route of your test on the sheet. This method works best if you have practiced the test and are familiar with it already. You can get as detailed as you want and use different colours for each gait or keep it simple. Just imagine that you are doing the test and draw it on the paper. I found this method very helpful as it is easy to repeat over and over again.

3. Listening to your test being called. Another method which could be helpful is calling your own test out and recording it on your phone. You can then replay it to yourself when you are riding it or repeat it whenever you want to revise the test. Alternatively Equivisions offer a service that plays all dressage tests from intro to advanced medium at 3 different speeds as MP3 downloads.

4. Watching others do your test online or in real life. This one maybe controversial. People seem to have differing views on whether it is helpful to watch others do their test. However the FEI have recommended it as a good way for you to visualise what your test looks like when it is ridden.

5. Dressage Today suggest reciting the test for a friend so he/she can follow your instructions to see if you can remember it properly. If he/she can do the test with you reciting it – well done! If they can’t you need to memorize it better!

6. Use an app. Of course there is an app for EVERYTHING. There are many dressage apps that incorporate the above techniques to help your learn your tests. The British Dressage app Testpro British Dressage is free. There are other ones to purchase available such as Equi Sketch Dressage and FEI Equi Tests to name a few.

So good luck for the season ahead. I hope that my top tips will be useful and give you some new ideas to help you memorize your tests. Let’s just hope this lovely weather stays around for a bit now!

Incase you missed it check out Keep Cool and Carry on! My Summer Tips for You and Your Horse.

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