Time Management, Part 1: Perspective

Two years ago I was over scheduled and stressed out. I made a New Year’s resolution to improve my time management, and over the year learned quite a few helpful things that I would like to share with you, because I imagine most people in the therapeutic riding industry feel or have felt this way … Continue reading

5-5-5 Repetitions

This is a really handy activity I learned from one of my mentors, called “5-5-5.” 5-5-5 Do 5 steps or counts of one thing, 5 of another, and 5 of another. Repeat. You can ask for one repetition per wall, up it to two, or go for whole laps. The benefits are: it breaks practicing … Continue reading

Mounting: Left vs. Right

While we’re on the topic of mounting (see previous post) here’s a few more thoughts! Why we mount from the left It comes from riding horses in the military. Xonophon (350 BC) explains how to mount from the left while holding your spear. Later, cavalry officers wore the sword on the left so they could draw … Continue reading

Mounting: Comfort vs. Independence

I just read a good article called Ease Mounting Pressures on Your Horse by Karen Smith in the magazine Dressage Today, that makes me think about the ongoing tension between mounting and working toward independence withing therapeutic riding. The article highlights a few issues with mounting, in particular from the ground: Stirrup pressure pulls the saddle toward the … Continue reading

Decision Making Skills

One of my riders with autism has difficulties making decisions. It is interesting: when asked to make a decision outright, such as “Would you like to lead your horse by the reins or the lead rope?” she has an extremely hard time and takes at least 5 minutes with assistance. It seems she has absolutely … Continue reading

Patterns 2.0 – for both horse and rider

This past weekend I went to the Midwest Horse Fair where I discovered Jec Ballou, one of the clinicians who focuses on horse fitness and classical training. Her perspective and exercises were so refreshing and very applicable to therapeutic riding, I believe. She wrote Equine Fitness and 101 Western Dressage Exercises, both of which I have and highly … Continue reading

Birthday Scavenger Hunt

Here is a cute birthday scavenger hunt my friend set up at our barn for a young rider who boards there. I wanted to share because it might spark some ideas for birthday activities with your riders! First, she arrived to the barn to this on her stall, and instead of her own horse in … Continue reading

Instructing While Pregnant

This has been on my mind lately because it’s happening to me. Surprise! There is a lot out there in internet land about riding while pregnant, but not much about teaching riding. Perhaps that’s because most instructors are not quite as involved in physically helping their riders as the therapeutic horseback riding instructor – such … Continue reading