It’s a proper winter this year with mud, mud, glorious mud so to keep up your spirits, why not take a look at our list of New Year’s resolutions and see how many take your fancy. Let’s look ahead to a sunny, horsey 2020.
Join one of the disciplines, there are lots of ‘try out’ options so you can have a go before you make a final decision. It can be lots of fun and you will meet some new horsey people. Affiliated competition is usually very well organised and consistent and embraces riders at every level so don’t be put off if you don’t think you are good enough
It doesn’t have to be a horseback safari in Africa it could be a week somewhere in Europe or even in the UK. Take advantage of the stunning scenery of the British Isles and ride somewhere completely new and different – the Welsh Mountains, Exmoor, the Yorkshire Dales, there are literally loads of lovely locations to choose from and some centres specialise in certain breeds of horses too
Imagine going to a rural area where you can camp or glamp with your horse and hack out in amazing terrain or have some top class tuition or both. Lots of centres offer mix and match packages in terms of riding and accommodation where you can ride your own horse and also some belonging to the centre you are staying at
Make new horsey friends and ride in an unusual foreign location whilst raising money for the British Horse Society or World Horse Welfare. Both of these organisations promote annual rides abroad usually lasting a fortnight in an amazing destination which requires a minimum level of sponsorship to participate in. Raise funds in your local equestrian community and then set sail on a fantastic fortnight and bring home a lifetime’s worth of memories plus the satisfaction of knowning that you have helped raise money for a worthwhile equestrian cause
Book a lessen either on your own horse or on a schoolmaster so you can experience a new level in your favourite equestrian sport. Riding other horses will really deepen your skill level and strengthen your expertise on your own horse as well
So much of equestrianism is run by volunteers so there is definitely something for everyone. Become a BE – British Eventing – volunteer, they run training days to get everyone up to speed and there are tons of different roles on horse trials days such as writing for the dressage judge, stewarding or fence judging. Why not volunteer for your local equine charity or rescue centre or help out with the local Riding for the Disabled Group? If you are looking for worthwhile horsey causes then you will be spoilt for choice
Equestrians are always on the go but sadly, yard work and poo picking are not always as helpful for your core strength or cardiovascular fitness as time spent in the gym. If strenuous exercise really isn’t for you then why not consider yoga or pilates both of which are very useful for riders. You may even find specific Pilates classes aimed at horsey people within your local community
We all have certain traits or bad habits which we do on the horse, it may be looking down or drawing the leg up into canter or a balance issue or fear of jumping a particular type of fence.Make 2020 the year that you are going to fix it once and for all.
And lastly, but by no means leastly, keep all your equestrian New Year’s resolutions! Happy 2020!