Emma Stevens from Hertfordshire has been taking part in our online dressage competitions since 2016 and more recently in our Para-Equestrian competition. We caught up with Emma to find out more about her and her lovely horse River.
I first rode when I was 3 years old on holiday - a 1 hour hack! I loved it and have been riding ever since.
I have Multiple Sclerosis.
River is a 12 years old bay Thoroughbred x Welsh.
He was home bred from my first pony, Fudge and I was there when he was born, the first to touch him and we’ve been together since. I backed him myself as a 4 year old.
River is allergic to oats, rye, maize and carrots, so basically most horse feed!!
We’ve just qualified for the Para Bronze Winter Championship and are about to attempt to qualify for the silver.
We’ve recently been using a music play list to improve our walk as this is such a large part of the Grade II tests. The rhythm of the music gets us both marching forward!
Our myler bit. Since changing to this bit River has been much more comfortable in his mouth and a much steadier contact.
My original goal for 2019 was to qualify for the Grade II Para Bronze Winter Championship. Having managed that I’m now planning to also qualify for silver in 2019 too.
The disease that is Multiple Sclerosis. Fatigue is tough going and totally knocks me for six daily. Numbness and lack of muscle strength (my 8 year old is stronger than me!) makes it very hard to give the right signal to the horse. I’m really luck River is kind, forgiving and does his best to work out what the hell I’m asking of him!!
Qualifying for the bronze championship on our first trip out with 69.12%. (I keep mentioning that don’t I! Oops)
From the RDA Facebook group when I was at my lowest point riding with a disability.
I love getting my scoresheet back really quickly so I can set my next set of schooling goals. The Para Grade 2 test was a test run for my show in August. Riding it with Dressage Anywhere first gave me the confidence to go out there and have a go at the show and also gave me tips on areas to work on in the run up!
Enjoy yourself! And remember to use your test to better yourself, take the judge's comments on board and use them to set your schooling goals.