True Blue: The Making of a Champion

True Blue: The Making of a Champion

We all love to have a tricolor hanging from our horse’s bridle—there is a great sense of accomplishment in achieving the consistency which earns a championship. It’s a culmination of many hours, days, months—even years—of practice, training, and thoughtful care.

But, let’s look beyond the moment we’re handed the ribbon and ask: what does it take to be a true champion? What about those small moments of victory that don’t garner an external reward? Is there a larger meaning? And, how do we foster a championship mentality all the time?

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Stressed in the Saddle? Shed the day's noise as you set foot in the barn aisle.

Stressed in the Saddle? Shed the day's noise as you set foot in the barn aisle.

Is barn time your therapy? Most of us amateurs consider our horses essential to our mental health. Pulled between work, family and other commitments, we lead complicated, stressful lives. The barn gives us an opportunity to slow down, be present, and get reconnected—not just to our horses, but also to ourselves.

At its best, barn time is a mini vacation. It’s like being ‘off the grid’ for that 45 minutes you’re in the saddle. 

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Had a Bad Fall? Bounce Back with Gusto!

Had a Bad Fall? Bounce Back with Gusto!

Have you fallen off your horse and hurt yourself? Did you sustain injuries not only to your body but also to your psyche?  In our career as equestrians, most of us will experience a nasty fall or two.  When a young rider tumbled off at the IEA Nationals last year, the announcer said matter-of-factly, ‘well, the only riders who don’t fall are those who don’t ride.’  True words.  

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Dignity and Kindness

Dignity and Kindness

A few riders and I were recently having a conversation about how we conduct ourselves in and out of the show ring. Our discussion was spurred by Izzy Baker’s The Kindness Movement (see recent interview on Street Stable) which she launched last year to raise awareness about kindness, the prevalence of bullying in our sport and how our community sometimes places value only on results. Our conversation meandered over to the topic of dignity, and how it relates to kindness.

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Thinking about Change?

Thinking about Change?

As the year comes to a close and our schedules ease up, many of us start to think about where we have been and where we want to go—both in riding and in our lives generally. As we reflect on our accomplishments and challenges of the past 12 months, it’s a great time to give thanks for everything the year has offered and contemplate the growth we desire for the new year.

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