Gallery 5

Vikki's Story

Vikki's lovely Connemara Conna wasn't happy and neither was Vikki. They had problems hacking out on their own and Vikki had become too nervous to jump. Conna followed her lead and wouldn't even go over a pole on the ground. Conna was tense and spooky and looked unlevel behind. Vikki knew her riding wasn't helping Conna but she just couldn't seem to put her instructor's teaching into practice.

Vikki decided to invest in a private one to one Confidence Masterclass with me. I went to her and we spent the day shining the spotlight on her riding and confidence problems and finding what was going to work for her. Then we went to Vikki's yard and I met Conna. What a lovely little horse he is! Conna showed Vikki how he was able to relax and cooperate when she made it possible for him. When Vikki calmed and grounded herself, Conna couldn't wait to be with her!

And when she rode, Vikki discovered how to cure those bad riding habits that had prevented Conna from cooperating under saddle. Using visualisation, Vikki made it possible for Conna to come through from behind and his unlevleness disappeared! As you can see from the pictures, Vikki and Conna practised jumping and had fun for the first time in a long time. Since then, despite a nasty injury caused by another horse which resulted in time out from riding for Vikki, she and Conna have gone from strength to strength and they're enjoying hacking out in open countryside together. This is what Vikki has to say: "I went over the park on my own for a quick loop, and guess what? We got chased by a dog! But I grounded myself, laughed about it and rode him through it and within minutes he was calm and plodding along again. I couldn't take the smile off my face. I have hacked out on my own every evening for pretty much two weeks now, and while hacking with my friend last weekend, I even jumped a small log :) I will always be naturally be a stress head, but you have given me the tools to make the reactions less dramatic, to check myself, banish the "what ifs" and "just get on with it". I can't thank you enough for that." Vikki and Conna: a pair of stars!

Esther's Story

Esther has the most beautiful Sudanese stallion, her dream horse. Sadly, her riding fears prevented her from enjoying him and he was mainly ridden by other people. Esther decided to do something about her problems and came along for a private one to one Confidence Masterclass. On her return home, Esther began to ride the beautiful JD, progressing to cantering on the racecourse exercise grounds, a challenging location with many other horses galloping past. Esther says: "The race course was its usual chaotic self but me and JD achieved our goal of riding around it, we even managed a short canter. I wouldn't say I was totally relaxed and my mouth was extremely dry but I did manage to contain the negative thoughts and enjoyed the ride. I hope to continue building on these positive experiences and learn to trust him more and more, as he learns to trust me! Thanks once again." Esther benefited from some e-mail support as she prepared herself for this challenge and she continues to put her Enjoy Riding confidence skills into practice. Amazing progress with your dream horse, Esther!

An update from Esther...

Esther and JD are making fantastic progress together: "I thought you would like to know that I continue to progress in Khartoum. I am now riding JD around the race track on my own! JD is proving to be incrediably sweet and steady. I still have to work on controlling my nerves but with each ride, grow in confidence. I find that remaining as you advised in the 'present' and smiling helps alot. My husband and I have booked a polo/horse riding holiday in September in South Africa and I am really looking forward to having the opportunity to ride other horses and to enjoy some lovely hacks."

Hacking Confidence Clinic

Bernadette, Janet, Alison and Claire came along for the Hacking Confidence Clinic held in June. We had lots of fun and, as you can see from the pictures, the weather was absolutely perfect! All the ladies achieved things they might have thought impossible: handling unknown horses, trotting and cantering on a hack, riding out in the open and actually enjoying it, surviving a spook without weeping and getting off. Amazing progress for all of them. Alison and Claire, who have their own horses, went home and hacked out alone, while Bernadette and Janet continue to build their confidence at their riding centres. You are all shining stars!

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