One of the things that I love most in life is learning. I get a thrill out of discovering facts and being exposed to new ideas. Learning is also undoubtedly one of the most important factors in helping us to continue to move forward as equestrians. But somehow in becoming an adult and trying to balance a career, my personal life and my equestrian pursuits, I forgot about all the incredible tools available to facilitate learning. I came to rely upon lessons as my only way of learning. I didn’t even realise it had happened until my recent interview with Bailey Notle who reminded me of the importance of continuous learning. In this digital age the options for learning are endless.
There are traditional approaches such as magazines and books to the more modern podcasts, YouTube channels, blogs and to websites. Over the next few weeks I am going to share some of my favourite sources of information starting with equestrian podcasts.
The Wonderful World of Podcasts
I originally found my way into the land of podcasts through several non-diet podcasts that I had stumbled across though my work as a dietitian. A few months ago I discovered the first of many equestrian podcasts. Best of all podcasts are portable so they can help make some of those more mundane tasks (mucking out the paddock) more enjoyable.
Here are my top 5 Equestrian Podcasts.
In her weekly podcast, Irish trainer Lorna Leeson shares brilliant training ideas for riders of all levels. Her aim is to help riders have productive training sessions and achieve their goals. Lorna tackles mindset issues such as how to stay motivated and accountable when riding alone and riding with intention. She also offers practical strategies for starting the green horse, how to lunge. For those of us with a short attentions span, Daily strides is perfect offering very digestible 12 minute chunks.
Philip Parks and Reese Koffler-Stanfield talk all things dressage. In addition to interviews with riders, trainers and judges, Philip and Reese talk about Dressage news and answer listener questions. I have loved their recent series on riding different movements such as travers, renvers and so on. This covers both the judges and the coaches perspective.
Heels Down Happy Hour is a fun podcast hosted by journalists Caroline Culbertson and Justine Griffin and international Event rider Jessica Payne. Releasing new episodes fortnightly the Heels Down Happy Hour podcast is a fairly new podcast on the scene. Although they are just four episodes in my prediction is that this podcast will be a hit. So far I have found it to be entertaining as well as discussing topical issues. Recently they considered the elimination of Australian dressage rider Tristan Tucker when he patted his horse during a test at an International competition.
UK podcast #HorseHour is a podcast made by riders for riders. Host Amy Stevenson interviews a wide range of people from within the equestrian community. From trainers, to competitors, to vets and many more this podcast offers it all. Through interviews with an incredible selection of guests, Amy covers a wide array of topics are also covered such as overcoming fears in the saddle, horse welfare, tack options, training issues and so on. Most recently Amy covers the topical issue of training young horses and how to best mange this for optimal horse welfare.
Despite being aimed at Hunter Jumpers, the majority of riders will find subjects of interest. Personally I have loved the insight into this unique world. I am also pretty sure that if I lived in America I would be a Hunter rider!
Hosted by Editor and publisher of The Plaid Horse magazine, Piper Klemm and the Sissy Wicks respectively, the PlaidCast interviews trainers, competitiors, show organisers and vets. Some of the podcasts I have enjoyed most have been regarding the proposed USEF ban on depo-provera/medroxyprogesterone acetate.
Additionally, once a month Tonya Johnston (mental skills coach) takes over to deliver the ‘Inside Your Ride’ podcast which is all about how we can harness our thinking to optimise our performance as riders. Many of you will know that I am a huge believer in mindset and performance coaching. Through this podcast Tonya offers a great introduction to this area of the equestrian world.
I’ve recently discovered a new equestrian themed highly educational podcast. Best of all ‘Horse Chats’ is an Australian podcast. Hosted by Australian rider and coach Glenys Cox the podcast aims to “improve the lives of horses around the world, through the education of their owners, riders and handlers”. In relatively short interviews at around 20minutes, Glenys talks to guest who are a mixture of established professional riders, judges, vets and physiotherapists. They talk about the horses and professionals that have inspired them, their learnings as riders and professionals, recommended readings and their career journey so far.
I was particularly excited when I discovered this podcast as several of the coaches I had worked with in the past, as well as my present coach Danielle Keogh are featured on this podcast.