At this point, most of us are missing our usual routines with our horses. Fortunately, there are numerous resources equestrians can access from home to continue to work on our riding.
By Nicole Williams
Let’s face it, nowadays we are not able to ride quite as often as we would like to. Maybe you’re riding less or unable to ride at all. We know it’s for the best, but we also know it’s still frustrating to not be able to do what you love. That being said, just because we’re not in the saddle does not mean our training has to stop. Being at home we are still able to continue our training and education — and here’s how!
We have compiled a list of resources for a variety of disciplines that give you access to training techniques, new exercises and fresh ideas to help you feel confident when returning to the ring. From training articles to monthly subscriptions, there’s a ton of information at your fingertips.
Subscription-based services are also a great way to support our associations, magazines, and trainers that no longer have a 2020 show season and are having to reduce travel and interacting with clients. Check out our lists below!
Hunter/Jumper and Show Jumping
We know you miss soaring over fences and want to keep that eye sharp — so here are five great resources you can use.
The first two resources are completely free so you can access them at any time. Practical Horseman gives you access to hundreds of training articles from working on flying changes to providing you with exercises to nail your hunter derby. Our sister sites, Eventing Nation and Jumper Nation, also provide you with articles and videos.
The last three are subscriptions where you can get access to over 400 videos and even gain new releases monthly. Every level of rider can enjoy these as they are for beginners through advanced!
Also, be on the lookout for elite trainers offering video critiques! Olympic show jumper, Will Simpson, will review a submitted schooling or show video and give you his feedback and tips. Find his social, Will Simpson Stables, on Facebook and Instagram!
Here are five resources that will help you perfect that 20-meter circle as well as stay straight down center line.
The first link you will need to have a subscription for, but don’t let that discourage you, because not only do you get access to all of their videos, but also a decade’s worth of digital editions of Dressage Today Magazine. These magazines provide thousands of step by step training articles.
The second link is online access to USDF’s “On The Levels” which goes through every dressage test so you can master every maneuver with judge and trainer commentary. For only one payment of $19.95, you have access to all the videos.
The last three resources are free and give you unlimited access to training videos and articles. In some of the articles, elite riders provide their philosophies and theories of dressage training.
If you’re missing practicing your patterns and sliding stops, don’t worry, we’ve got you covered.
Although you need a subscription for Matt Mills Reining, he provides multiple training videos for you and your horse as well as how to prepare for different reining patterns. Not sure if you are ready to commit? No problem — you can try a 7-Day Free Trial.
On Demand from Horse and Rider isn’t just for reining, but their digital archive includes training videos from Bud Lyon and Al Dunning to help you refine your reining or ranch riding horse.
The last two resources allow free access to multiple videos for training as well as interviews with top trainers that you can check out at any time. If you want to improve your spins or perfect your transitions, check these out!
Western Horsemanship & All-Around
Looking for ways to improve your western horsemanship and trail patterns? There’s no need to wait until you are physically back on your horse, you can find topics like these and more in the links we’ve provided.
The first two resources we have provided have multiple training articles that can help you with fixing lead change anticipation as well as tips to get a smooth back up. These articles also have new exercises that you can try with your horse when you return to the saddle and you can access them all for free.
If you prefer to watch training in action, then the last two links are for you. All you have to do is subscribe and you will have the opportunity to take a lesson from your couch. You are able to enjoy weekly video launches and ‘Horse and Rider on Demand’ even organizes their training videos by topic!
The last link is for you western pleasure riders. LaRose Show Horses have been doing Facebook Live training videos so you get to see the good, bad, and the ugly of training young horses and fine-tuning finished horses. They talk through everything going on as they ride and their favorite tips for creating a top show horse.
- Horse and Rider
- Horse Illustrated
- Horse and Rider On Demand
- Horse Training Channel
- LaRose Show Horses
Here’s a resource that is great no matter what discipline you ride. FEI TV offers live coverage of competitions from the World Equestrian Games to the Longines Jumping World Cup, Eventing Nations Cup, and more! What’s even better – the videos stay up on their site so you can re-visit competition coverage. It is a subscription-based service with monthly or yearly options. We know you’re missing show season with everything canceled due to COVID-19, so here’s a great way to get back in the show ring!
For those that may not be able to sit down and watch a video or read an article, we have provided a few different podcasts that you can listen to anytime whether you are driving in your car or going for a walk. The great news is that all of these podcasts can easily be accessed for free.
These podcasts are excellent sources for improving your riding. “Daily Strides” provides step-by-step training and horsemanship episodes every Monday. “How To Dressage” is put together by British dressage judges with a goal to help you get higher scores in your next competition. The Equestrian Podcast talks about a range of topics for riders of any discipline from course design to rider fitness. Andrea Fappani offers a great podcast for reiners to talk about training and showing! Guests on The Plaidcast include Olympic equestrians, top hunter/jumper and equitation riders, trainers, horse show managers and industry insiders.
All five of these podcasts will have tips for each of its listeners whether it is listening to interviews from the top riders or hearing training tips!
Our list is a small example of the endless amount of resources that are out there right at your fingers. There are many other subscriptions and articles out there to help improve your riding and even online horse shows. Don’t let not being able to make it in the ring hold you back from learning — take this time to dive into the sources that are out there so you keep your confidence and feel ready to return to the saddle!
Nicole Williams grew up in New York and started riding horses at the age of nine when she moved to Virginia. She spent many years showing in local and rated shows which grew her love for the sport. While attending Florida Atlantic University for her degree in sociology, she also competed in equitation with FAU’s IHSA team. Nicole knew from the start that she wanted to incorporate horses into her career and is currently interning at Entrigue to gain equestrian marketing experience while still riding in the hunter/jumper ring! If you want to learn more about Entrigue’s digital marketing services, visit www.entrigueconsulting.com.