The Importance of Continuing Education

For event rider and personal trainer Laura Crump-Anderson of Hidden Heights Fitness, life is one big learning opportunity — and in her column this month, she’s sharing a treasure trove of knowledge from dressage rider JJ Tate, plus a yoga pose that’ll help you unlock tight hips (and sit the trot better than ever!):

I am a lifelong learner. I love auditing clinics and expanding my knowledge by reading books. If I ever get the opportunity to ride with a new trainer, the answer will always be ‘yes’. If you are thinking about hosting a rider fitness clinic, I will almost always trade your session for a lesson. I love getting as many eyes on my riding as possible and hearing different peoples perspectives.

There are cardinal voices I hear in my head from my trainers, and I always come back to them if I am feeling confused. But I love learning new things. I don’t like exercising, but I will do any exercise class at least once. I can always learn something to bring back to my clients. Continuing education is something I let lead my life.

You have to go through life looking to expand your knowledge base. You can always learn more about things you know a lot about. Look at most really good professional riders and emulate them. They are taking lessons from the best clinicians they can get. They are training with top dressage riders and top show jumping coaches and not just staying in the sport of eventing.

This year I started teaching clinics. I have taught lessons since I was a kid, literally, but now people are paying me real money to get my opinion on what they are doing with their body on a horse. I really wanted to up my game. I have audited clinics this year alone with JJ Tate, Lars Petersen, Erik Duvander, William Fox Pitt, Julia Krajewski and more. I am always looking for things I can bring back to riders at my clinics. But it wasn’t until I found Team Tate Academy that really felt like I was training my eye.

I love this platform so much. It is very interactive and I have learned some much from JJ. I feel like all the content she puts out, I just eat up, and want more. I talked with JJ and wanted to bring it to you. Click here to learn about the fundamentals mini-course.

It would not be a very good fitness column without an exercise for this month, so I wanted to bring you a balance postured that is grounded in what you know, while still reaching for the unknown and greater knowledge.


This is a yoga pose that is usually done in the middle of a flow when you are already warmed up. It is a great exercise to work into you at home workouts. This is a great balance posture in also works our tight hips and side body so is a great great exercise for the rider.

  • Start by taking a confident stance length wise on your mat
  • Point your front toe towards the front of your mat. Point your back to straight ahead.
  • Bring your arms out to T position and look over the arm that is pointing toward the front of your mat.
  • The first action in this pose is reach straight straight forward from your hips (Like there is something you want to grab right in front of you)
  • The next move is to pretend your forward arm is the spout of a tea pot and poor the tea out, land your had next to your shin
  • Look down to be kind to your neck
  • Or look up to challenge your balance
  • Hold this pose for about 30 seconds the build it to the other side

Laura Crump Anderson is a certified as a personal trainer by the American College of Sports Medicine and is a Registered 200 Hour Teacher with the Yoga Alliance. She specializes in working with riders of all ages and disciplines through her business, Hidden Heights Fitness, and is also the author of Ultimate Exercise Routines for Riders. She holds a Bachelor’s of Science in Kinesiology with a concentration in Exercise Science, and has evented through Training level. You can read more of her fitness columns on our sister site, Eventing Nation.