Sunday, May 31, 2009


Hi, everyone! Thank you for your continued support and questions about riding and horses. The last several weeks have been very busy, first, traveling to Old Salem Farm for two weeks of showing and, then, to the junior weekend at Devon. At the shows, I was privileged to school several of the customers horses early in the show week and I thoroughly enjoyed the experience. This week, we are at Hunter's Moon Farm in Long Island, New York, and some of our riders will compete at a local one day show over this weekend. Since we returned home, I have been flatting, schooling, training, and teaching. Next week, Frank Madden Show Stable will be competing at Hits Saugerties and later in June, we will travel to Lake Placid, New York, for two weeks.

Again this month, as I did in the last several months, I will be using the format that answers some of your most recent questions. I appreciate the time you take communicating with me and I hope that you find my responses to your questions helpful.

My horse named, Bella, has old scars on her back ankles that still give her pain when she hits them together... her injury is getting worse which means she can't compete... My dad is insisting that we look for a horse or two to lease out. This is my first year going for the big eq finals. Do you think I'm making the right decision horse wise?

It seems that from your question you are truly struggling with what is happening to your horse, Bella. Unfortunately, horses can get injured and it is part of the sport. First, I think you need to talk to your trainer about what is happening with you and your horse right now. Your trainer knows the situation well, can help you sort through your feelings and has the tools and the knowledge to help you gain a better understanding of the situation. Second, your dad, who you mentioned in your question, is trying to help you with this unfortunate circumstance. So, please try to talk more with him about it as well. Afterwards, maybe you can have a meeting with your trainer and your parents and an appropriate plan can be developed for you and your horse that works best for everyone involved. Good luck to you in your first year in the big eq and I hope that Bella will be feeling better some time soon!

What saddle do you ride in?

I ride in a Devoucoux saddle. There are many different brands and types of saddles which meet the individual preferences and requirements of different types of riders. Each of the riding disciplines, for example, show jumping, dressage, eventing, etc., require a different type of saddle. What is most important about a saddle is that it properly fits you and the horse that you are riding. When you and your horse are comfortable with the fit of the saddle you have chosen, then that decision will help you to have an improved experience when you are riding.

Talk to you later,

Maria Schaub