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Blogger Lauren Sprieser

March 28, 2015

The End-Of-Season Blitz

We're down to the wire in Florida, with just days before my horses and I pack up and head home. And without fail, there's this sudden franticness, to get everything done, to see everyone, to cram in those last lessons. And last week was no exception.

March 21, 2015

All Of A Sudden

I remember this one day. It was the summer of 2010. Midge was 8. And I got on, and I picked up the reins, and there he was. He was connected to my hand, hind legs, withers, bridle. He was balanced and organized. He was just THERE. He felt like an expensive FEI horse, and while he still made mistakes, still needed to develop in his strength and timing and coordination, still wouldn't do his first Grand Prix for two years, all of a sudden, he was there.

March 10, 2015

That Boring Thing We Do Before Cross-Country

As a dressage trainer in Northern Virginia, I teach a lot of event riders. And I mean a LOT. Like my strictly dressage students, they run the gamut—from the grassroots to the international levels, beginner novice at the local combined test to Rolex. Some of them are better at hiding it, and some of them don't even try, but without fail, they have one thing in common: before they start riding with me, virtually all of them think that dressage is that thing that they have to suffer through before they get to the fun stuff.

March 7, 2015


They were ready. I'd run through the test with both of them at least once. But it's one thing to move your own horses up a level of competition. It's another thing to do it with someone else's horse.

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 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. 

January 30, 2015

A Trainer's Manifesto

1. Above all else, know this: we want you to be successful. We want this for you because that's our job, of course—to produce successful students, at whatever "success" means to you. Whether winning the Olympics or just cantering two circles around without being afraid, we want you to Win at It. And if you doubt that we want you to win simply because its in our natures, consider this: happy clients are more likely to keep paying us, and more likely to tell others they should pay us. Happy clients = good business.

January 24, 2015

The Winter 2015 Plan Comes Together

We're about three weeks in, everyone has settled, and a plan is falling into place.

January 12, 2015

The First Week In Florida

All: We have arrived! We will all settle in and be incredibly mature. Don't look so shocked, lady.

Fender: Whee! Florida! I'm going to try and buck you off.

Danny: Me too! In between, I will give you about the most amazing feeling you've ever gotten from a horse in your life. This means that someday, you'll be able to control me when I'm this up, and it will be the kind of thing that will get you HUGE scores at CDI Grand Prix. But that day is not today. WHAT WAS THAT OVER THERE?!

January 4, 2015


I had a lovely Christmas with my family, and a lovely New Year's with friends. It got cold for a few days, during which everyone tried to buck me off, and then it got warm and beautiful, during which I wondered why I was leaving. And then it was Jan. 2, and it was time to go.

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