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Various voices check in about their Olympic experiences.

Barns are reopening their doors, clinics are being scheduled, and shows are starting to creep back onto the calendar. But whether showing is a thing you’re going to participate in or not, and whether you’re a beginner or an international level rider, there’s a huge opportunity to make the most of time out of the show ring...
Dear Rita, In 2015, Dressage Today asked me to submit a short story about a difficult training problem I had encountered in my career and how I had solved it. I offered a story about my first successful FEI horse, Izotops, which I had written years earlier for a collection of short stories about horses. The story was...
I just lived through one of those disaster weeks.  It started with the USDF FEI Trainers’ Conference. I’d been selected to ride on Elvis, and I thought it would be a good exposure moment for him as I work to add members to his syndicate. But I’d also entered a CDI for later in the week, and when we started playing...
It’s time to put my big girl pants on. I have to take a deep breath and be rational. I have avoided equestrian goal setting for long enough. I have made excuses, both valid and invalid, as to why I have avoided it. For example, I don’t want to put the goal ahead of the health and well-being of my horses (valid). I think...
Over the last several months I’ve been working with a horse named Titan. Titan is a strapping young Thoroughbred cross who oozes athleticism. While he is generally a really sweet horse, he also has an insecure nature. I have worked with him for several months, focusing on building his confidence, but he rarely feels “let...
I remember sitting in the 2011 U.S. Equestrian Federation annual meeting where David O’Connor, then the president of the organization, was going from committee to committee to promote support for helmets. Some of the breeds and disciplines were more resistant than others, and at one point, he said something along the lines...
One of the beautiful things about dressage is that there are so many levels at which to play. I don’t just mean training level versus third level versus Prix St. Georges versus Grand Prix; I mean that there are schooling shows, recognized shows, CDIs, and various regional and national championship tracks. My original goal for...
There were two fillies out in Becky’s hilly pasture playing at their dams’ sides. One was slender and quick, a bay so reddish she was practically a chestnut; the other was a more solid-boned dark bay. Both were friendly, coming up to Becky and me for attention, but it was the reddish bay I liked—leggy, little and quick,...
Longer and hotter days, sweaty breeches, pink SWAT, the hum of stall fans—all signs that the summer vacation season is upon us.  For those of us who grew up in the horse world, there were never shortages of ways to earn some quick summer cash. You could work at pony camps, groom at shows, teach some lessons, muck some...
Several years ago, I went barn hunting after another military move. I thought I found a great boarding option, only to come to the mutual agreement with the barn owner that it was not a good fit. She was convinced I would “corrupt” her strictly adult amateur hunter clients because I had foxhunting, eventing and dressage in...
To make a long story as short as possible, I’ve been experiencing some pain in my low back, at an increasing interval and increasing severity, since April. I’m pretty sure I know the root cause, and I’m finally getting that taken care of, but I didn’t do it in time, because over the weekend the pain became as bad as...
A foot of snow followed by 10 days of freezing temperatures allows you to accomplish some important things. Incidentally, riding is not one of them. Some of you may have noticed that I haven’t blogged nearly as much over the last year and half. There are a couple reasons for that. My blog has always been a bit of a...

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