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Blogger Lauren Sprieser

November 14, 2016

2016 U.S. Dressage Finals: In The Books, With One Regret

I’m sitting in my PJs recovering from a terrific trip to Kentucky for the U.S. Dressage Finals, sipping coffee, listening to my mountains of laundry churn away, packing up my show clothes for the trip to Florida in January, and looking back on a wonderful year.

November 8, 2016

Two Ways Up The Levels

I get asked some form of this question 50 times a year, in lessons, at clinics, via email or Facebook: how do I rise up the levels? What’s the best plan to get from being a lower-level rider to FEI? What path should I follow?

There are, for all intents and purposes, two options: to find a schoolmaster, a horse trained to the upper levels, from whom to learn; or to bring along a green horse, to teach him and yourself together along the way.

October 10, 2016

Ebb And Flow

Between Michael giving a clinic at my place a few weeks ago, our Regional Finals two weeks after that, and Devon two weeks after that, I am really inspired right now. All the horses in my program are going to be FORWARD, they are going to be ELASTIC, they are going to be CONNECTED, they are going to go in SELF-CARRIAGE, and they are going to do all those things NOW!

Johnny is thriving. Danny not so much.

October 4, 2016

The Devon Magic

Devon and I, we go way back.

We go back to 2005, where I did win the Young Rider freestyle on a very, very big score, after nearly getting my rear end dumped in the ring at least once in the Team and Individual Tests. Then there was 2006, when Billy ran backwards almost all the way from X to the ingate at A (comment at the end of the test from Anne Gribbons: that I was “tactful, brave, and not influential.” Love it.)

September 29, 2016

How To Prepare For Devon

THREE MONTHS BEFORE: Natasha, one of your assistant trainers, asks if she can join her family on a vacation for a chunk of time that includes Dressage at Devon. It’s not great timing, but you’re well staffed at home, so missing one person won’t be a disaster.

September 19, 2016

Through Fire

My coach, Michael Barisone, is a Big Deal Guy.

We’d met in passing a few times, but never had more than a superficial "Hi, how are you, nice ride," conversation until I was at Gladstone a few years ago for one of the USEF Talent Search type things. I had Ella and Midgey, both on the brink of Grand Prix. I was 24 or 25, taking clinics here and there with whoever was around, all good people, but there was no single thread to my training, and I was deeply, terribly lost in the weeds.

September 8, 2016

Throwback Thursday: Embrace The Suck

Readers have unearthed this blog post from dressage rider and trainer Lauren Sprieser, which was originally published on www.coth.com on Aug. 19, 2015, and made it one of the most popular articles again. Read it last time? It's worth another look!

September 5, 2016

Bringing Them Along

It’s September! I love September. September is when the temps finally break (though apparently not this week), when the kids go back to school and free their parents up to ride a bit more, when the shows ramp up again after a quiet July-August.

August 25, 2016

The Team Experience

I occasionally peruse the COTH discussion forums, and a few weeks ago, after the North American Junior and Young Rider Championships, someone started a thread debating the merits of the Young Rider programs.

July 26, 2016

That Show Ring Shine

A lot goes into a winning competition ride. Years of great training for the horse and for the rider; smart preparation leading up to the show, including conditioning and fitness work; tack and equipment that helps both horse and human perform their best; and a great strategy to manage two brains—and lots of emotions—on the day.

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