Category Archives: Friday’s Five

Friday’s Five – Summer reads to take your riding to the next level

Phillip Dutton and Indian Mill. Photo courtesy of Kerstin Hoffman.

  Spending an afternoon reading and basking in the beautiful summer weather makes for a relaxing time. Don’t waste your time reading non-horsey books, instead use your reading time to make yourself a better rider. You can learn a huge amount about riding from simply reading quality horsey books, which is also cheaper than spending money on lessons. Enjoy some affordable lessons with the world’s best riders by reading these top books this summer:   1) Dressage with Kyra: The Kyra Kyrklund Training Method – This is one of the easiest dressage books to read and you can apply the information from this book in…

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Friday’s Five – Social media mistakes you need to QUIT making

Rider on phone

  Social media is a necessary and a critical reality in the equestrian world. As a rider, social media can help or damage you. Knowing how to use it well can make a big difference in leveraging the power of it to get you more clients, sponsors and owners. Using it incorrectly can create an impression with the public that will be hard to reverse and damage your reputation. Here are five common mistakes that I often see riders making. If you are committing any of these social media sins, stop today. 1. Failing to separate personal and professional social…

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Friday’s Five – Tips for competing in comfort when your horse trailer lacks living-quarters

horse trailer

  Eventing is an outdoor sport; in between your rides, you cannot just go into a nice comfy dressing room to relax. At horse trials, you are pretty much stuck at your trailer. Some people are fortunate and own a trailer with posh living-quarters but I have never been one of those riders. Although owning a fancy trailer may seem more convenient, there are also more affordable ways to live a life of luxury at events. Here are five tips to make your 2017 competition season the most comfortable one to date: 1) Pack yummy food: At most events horse…

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Friday’s Five – Things you need to know before competing at a CCI event

kermit and sable

  Competing at a CCI is a huge accomplishment in itself. By the time you make it to a CCI you have spent countless hours in the saddle training and have probably shed some blood, sweat and tears on your journey to this riding milestone. CCI events are a true test of a horse’s fitness because the cross-country courses are more challenging and longer than at horse trials or CIC events. And let’s not forget that a top placing at a CCI makes for serious bragging rights and many events at this level now feature a healthy amount of prize money. There are few…

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Friday’s Five – Must haves at an event cool down

Vet box at Fair Hill 2015-IMG_4931

  As you gallop over the cross-country finish line at either a CCI of CIC a team of veterinarians will meet you to monitor your horse’s cool down. They will check your horse’s heart rate, temperature and overall condition and they will keep rechecking your horse until it is fit to go back to the stables. Your horse deserves the best care possible after running and jumping its butt off on cross-country. Your job as the rider is to provide the perfect cool down for your noble steed. Make sure you have these supplies ready at the cool down area…

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Friday’s Five – Trot up tips to own the jog

Learn to jog horses up as well as Mark Todd can.

  At every CCI event you have to jog your horse up for the Ground Jury once before dressage and then again after cross-country, before you can show jump. Additionally, if a CIC event runs cross-country before show jumping, you will have to jog up your horse. These jog ups are to ensure that all horses are fit and sound to compete. However, having a horse that is a hundred-percent sound still does not guarantee you will be ‘accepted’ and able to show. Countless sound horses have been ‘spun’ at jog ups because of poor presentation. It is easy for…

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Friday’s Five – Tips to get the most out of your trot sets


  Before and during the season, eventers use interval training to strengthen and improve their and their horses’ fitness. Do you suffer from feelings of boredom or futility as you clunk around your arena or field, completing trot set after trot set? Do you wonder why you’re doing them when you could be practicing your simple changes or improving your horse’s jumping technique with gridwork? Do you wonder what value these trot sets actually hold in the long run? Trot sets are a fantastic way to improve your horse’s fitness and top eventers from around the world incorporate them into…

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Friday’s Five – Steps to help you find owners regardless of your level


  You do not need to have an Olympic appearance on your record to seek out ownership support. There are many individuals who would be interested in joining your team and supporting your riding journey even if you are not targeting a four-star in the near future. But when you head out looking for owners you need to forget the traditional model of ownership – a wealthy individual already steeped in Eventing culture – and broaden your horizons to bring new people into the sport. People who would get satisfaction and enjoyment from being part of a sport team and watching a…

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Friday’s Five – Baby products you need in your grooming arsenal

Sorry kid, those diapers are for my horse's hooves.

  You might feel a bit uneasy navigating the baby aisle at a store if you are happily childless. But many products that work well on babies also work well on horses. Weird, I know but true. Before your next event swing by the baby section and stock up on these items that will make your grooming job a lot easier: 1) Baby powder – Did your horse manage to get a yucky stain on its white hind sock on the way to the event? Is your grey horse’s tail more like a palomino colour? Do your horse’s cross-country boots…

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Friday’s Five – Ways to entertain yourself when riding isn’t an option

no riding

  It’s a cruel world because no matter who you are or what you do there are going to moments in your life when you cannot ride. Perhaps you just can’t ride for the weekend because you’re out of town. Or maybe you are unable to ride for months because you’re injured. Or your horse has inflicted some self-harm on itself and you are a horseless. Then there are the periods of time that you have already ridden all of your horses for the day so you find yourself bored. Whatever the reason is for not being able to ride…

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