I have a photo at home of me on a horse. I was about sixteen and I was riding the big kind mare who I never owned but who the thought of spending time with twice a week got me through the stress of my leaving cert year. I am sat on her back without a saddle cantering around the sand arena with my arms outstretched and a smile on my face. It was pure trust and pure freedom but we can’t do that anymore.
That surge in horse power just before a massive buck.
Realising your phone has just slipped out of your pocket.
Realising this and hearing a splash or a crunch.
Back on Easter bank holiday weekend I attended a dressage clinic at Toberton Lodge. Now you are probably thinking sure that’s a good while ago, and it is but I figured it made sense to work on what we covered and see how it went before I wrote about it. Our clinic was with Irelands equestrian Paralympic champion Helen Kearney. Helen is the great success story of the 2012 Paralympic Games taking home three medals across team and individual events. For me, I remember Helen from before then. I remember Helen back when she was a child and she came to ride at the yard where I ride and keep a horse. I remember her determination as she jumped her pony Robin and her will to succeed no matter what stood in her way. It was no surprise that these traits served her well at the 2012 games and when Helen returned to the yard to deliver one of her first coaching clinics in dressage I was keen to get in the ring. Read the rest of this entry
Ever thought ‘no one ever wins those competitions on Facebook’? I used to think that too. I was wrong. People win – I won! Most recently I won a fantastic prize of a two day trip to Crossogue Equestrian near Thurles in Co. Tipperary in Ireland. My trip included two nights stay, meals and four lessons. Having ridden at Crossogue many years ago I was delighted to get an opportunity to head back and even more delighted when my friend Dani decided to book in to come with me.
We have all been there….those days where you consider taking up an indoor hobby that only involves inanimate objects…..
This was me, not one of my finest moments. Miraculously we didn’t part company as the horse was a gent and lifted his head up and waited for me to cop myself on.
“What’s the difference between a horse and a pony”
I’m serious, two colleagues in my office job conference called me one day to ask me to answer this in order to settle an argument between them. Turns out they were both wrong, go figure.
“Aren’t they dangerous?”