The lack of competitions has left many riders feeling despondent when it comes to achieving their goals, particularly with the slow start to the season we’ve already had. However, if you find yourself with a little extra time on your hands, there’s still a whole host of equine-related activities you can enjoy from the safety of your own home – even without the excitement of the competition ring to look forward to.
- Virtual learning Head over to YouTube for unlimited tutorials and educational videos to give your riding and management a boost. With everything from gridwork exercises and how to ride the perfect shoulder-in, to plaiting and turnout tips, you’re sure to find something that takes your fancy. A little inspiration can go a long way, so why not learn a new skill while you’re not prepping for your next outing?
- Boost your knowledge Lots of universities and colleges are running free, online courses in everything from equine diets to first aid. Take advantage of this great opportunity to learn a little more about your equine best friend and feel more confident in your day-to-day care.
- Tick off that to-do list With no outings in the diary for the foreseeable future, you may find you have a little more free time on your days off. If you keep your tack at home, take the time to give it a thorough, deep clean, and why not de-hair and wash all your numnahs? There’s no shortage of jobs to be done and you’ll feel better for having made a dent in your to-do list.
- Coach from your couch Why not submit some old riding videos to your instructor or coach for feedback? Many instructors are now providing remote coaching and you’ll still be able to benefit from their feedback for when you’re ready to get back in the saddle.
- Competition fix If you’re ready and raring to get back into the show ring, why not put together your old competition footage and make a home movie to enjoy? You’ll see how far you’ve come – plus get a few ideas for improvements – and you’re guaranteed to feel even more excited about getting back in the saddle.
- Make a change Adjust your goals away from the competition circuit and work towards something you can achieve at home. Break them down as you would for the season and spend time in your sessions at home building up towards them. This could be producing the perfect plaits learning how to do quarter marks.
- All together now Join a horsey forum or Facebook group to keep you connected to a like-minded community. Social distancing and self-isolation can be a lonely time, but with social media there’s no reason you can’t stay in touch with equine-loving friends – or make new ones.
Are you after ways to make the most of the quarantine? Look no further than these exciting opportunities…
Horse Monkey virtual events
Enjoy the challenge of competing from the comfort of your yard with Horse Monkey’s virtual events – you don’t even need to get in the saddle. Participate from home or even organise your own challenge to keep your friends motivated. If you want to run a challenge with no fee to enter we’ll even waive our administration fee, too! You give, we give. Join us now and help the equestrian community stay connected.
Brightmare Productions’ Creative Riding
Equine publisher Brightmare Productions’ brand new book series, Creative Riding, contains hundreds of exercises to help keep your training varied and interesting, both in the arena and out on hacks. Read ahead and plan out weeks worth of schooling sessions ready for when you get back in the saddle.