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February 24, 2015

Riding The Moment

The textbooks all say that we sit on the horse, we half halt, we soften, and voila! They make their way up the levels, learning the work. Here on planet earth, sometimes we have to get 'er done. Maybe we have to dig in and drive like hell for a few strides; maybe we have to hold a horse up for a while, until they can hold themselves up.

February 18, 2015

In Which Katy Gives Creative Riding Advice

Not for the first time, I’m hunched over a computer screen in the back seat of the truck on the way to an event, trying to take advantage of every spare hour to do my “homework.” When I graduated college, I was relieved at the thought that I would never again have to turn in an assignment, cram for a due date, or write an essay for a cantankerous old professor. 

February 16, 2015

My No. 1 Goal This Year At WEF (Or, Day 1)

A quick synopses of the day after our arrival in Wellington:

Go to barn, check on horses

February 13, 2015

Get Moving

Our lives are busy, we equestrians. Whether we ride professionally or as amateurs, it's a sport that can't be played at our convenience, whenever we find a few minutes. A soccer ball we can just pick up when we can. We can go for a run anytime. Our tennis rackets don't need to be fed three times a day, nor does it cost much of anything at all to keep our bowling balls or surfboards healthy, trained and well cared for. 

February 12, 2015


When I was about 13 years old, I decided to take the stirrups off my dressage saddle for two months. I became really good at posting without stirrups, sitting the trot, following the canter. But when I put the stirrups back on, my position immediately worsened as every time I went to post, my feet pushed off the horse’s side, upsetting my entire leg.

February 9, 2015

Who Am I?

The Chronicle's newest blogger is Sydney Collier, a member of the U.S. Para-Dressage Team at the 2014 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games in France, and the recipient of the 2014 Junior Equestrian of the Year Award from the U.S. Equestrian Federation. She and her service dog, Journey, hit the spotlight at the 2014 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games.

February 8, 2015

Countdown To WEF!

In trying to prepare for Epic Winter Tour (EWT) 2015, I decided I needed a strict program, lots of lessons, and a strong exercise program so we could be as ready as possible. This pretty much worked just about as well as weather, horses, and work would allow it.

Stage 1 – A week at Woodhill

February 5, 2015

We're Conquering The Wellington Shakes

I was lucky, at a young age, to get a job working under show jumper Susie Hutchison, a woman who had a profound effect on my riding career and life.

I remember going to work for her at Indio, Thermal, Showpark and a lot of other venues in Southern California. I very honestly was completely out of my depth and at first quite overwhelmed by the experiences, but I grew to love the scene of it all and truly enjoyed jumping the young horses for her.

February 4, 2015

Taylor's Tips: Starting Young Horses

Everyone starts their young horses differently. Some start them as 2-year-olds and some wait until they are 4. Some start them through long-lining and some start them through lunging. Who is to say what the “correct way” is. In my opinion there are multiple correct ways, and every person must find what works for them and the horse.

February 3, 2015

Direction #1: Don’t Follow Directions

So, I’ve recently started teaching lessons. I identify more as a student than as a teacher, so stepping into the role of instructor has been a peculiar and meandering process for me. I’ve avoided teaching in the past, not because I dislike it or lack the skill, but because to be a great instructor you need to be friendly and encouraging and have a way with words. By comparison, I am snarky and blunt and often in the heat of the moment just start yelling words and unintelligible phrases at students.