Report from Northern Training Day, Myerscough – with Judy Harvey FBHS 

As we have come to expect, Judy Harvey delivered an excellent day. Horses varied from 4 year olds just starting out, to two horses moving into Advanced Medium and working on changes.
The International Arena at Myerscough is indeed a fantastic setting. I had done a deal with the College that we could use the school in return for their equine staff attending the day. This arrangement worked well and helped keep the participant costs down.
Judy concentrated on the basics and “round and down” was the order of the day for warming up. With the 4 year old horse Judy emphasised that the horse must go off the leg with much less effort from the rider. Straightness was stressed throughout the other sessions and a simple comment to ride the changes more forward helped a lot. Judy’s real strength above other dressage trainers lies in the fact that she is also a rider trainer. It was refreshing to hear her correcting riders, and no one was exempt from her eagle eye, including the two F and I members who rode!
The audience was very much involved – although many commented that they had no need to ask questions as Judy was so clear! As usual though it was a pity that only 4 members of the F and I Association were able to attend – however those who made it thoroughly enjoyed their day. Thank you Judy, and thank you Myerscough!
30th October 2008 (report from Sue Pimbley)

F & I Show Jump Coaching Day at Kenneth Clawson’s yard, Leire.

This C.P.D. day was co-hosted by Peter Murphy and gave all those who attended a valuable insight into coaching show jumping skills to top riders.
The day was organised so that the morning consisted of coaching sessions on a one to one basis, where several Fellowship candidates were able to demonstrate their coaching skills with guidance from Peter or Kenneth.
Kenneth had the indoor school, while Peter had to get wet several times in the outdoor school. There were opportunities for the coaching sessions to be analysed and several teaching points were discussed before feedback at the end of the sessions. Peter was particularly keen to stress an attention to detail with regard to the basics. He encouraged the coaching candidate to identify the key issues to gain improvement in the area being examined before moving on to further exercises.

Read more F & I Show Jump Coaching Day at Kenneth Clawson’s yard, Leire.

Talland Study day

There is no doubt in my mind that this visit was the best day’s training any F&I member could possibly have done – or anyone who is passionate about training riders and horses. Because that was what was on offer : passion about training, open discussions, detailed questioning on strategy and tactics from a dozen slightly differing points of view, revealing fascinating answers…
There were interesting horses to ride and assess, and for several the chance to sit on superb schoolmasters and top competition horses, plus clear and to-the-point feedback from one of the UK’s top coaches. And you didn’t even have to ride if you didn’t want to or weren’ t fit – just watch and discuss and take it all in. What more could one want?
The only problem was the torrential weather, which made several attendees late as roads were closed around Cirencester – but all recovered their poise and we just carried on – which is of course also what Talland does par excellence!
The format was tweaked this year to incorporate both riding and assessing, AND a glimpse into the training methods of Talland on horses ranging from youngsters to potential Young Rider and Grand Prix prospects. Somehow it all fitted into four hours, and I think proved to be the perfect mix.

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Hickstead – Royal International Horse Show – July 2008 

Thanks to our very own Patrick Print FBHS, several members of the F and I Association and their guests were able clear their diaries on a Saturday afternoon and enjoy the BHS’s private box facilities overlooking the main arena at the Royal International Horse Show at Hickstead.
We watched some cracking rounds during the most prestigious jumping class of the day, and were treated to a course-walk with one of the leading names. We also had the chance to second-guess the judges for some of the Supreme Championships of the showing classes which were happening virtually under our noses. Add the opportunity to natter for the whole afternoon, whilst munching a delicious afternoon tea, and with a glass in one’s hand… my daughter and even my husband were keen to join me for this one!
The trade stands are available all day for serious shopping, and of course I strayed to the international dressage for the morning, which is also going on just across the way… Whichever way you do it, it’s a really civilised day out. Advance date for your diaries: 25 th July 2009 – and thank you again, Patrick!
report by Alison Craig

F & I Judy Harvey Training Day

We were treated to a gorgeous summer day at Judy Harvey’s where we could watch, listen and learn.  As well as a perfect opportunity for us I’s to bring along our own or owners’ horses to work on with Judy, it’s also a great opportunity just to spectate, and to spend time taking it all in and exchanging coaching ideas with fellow trainers.
Judy had several riders to help;  I will mention a few.  With Andrew Fletcher, Judy worked with the canter rhythm, sending him on and back so his horse learns to sit down more. She also included lots of transitions to help the horse “ping” off the ground.
Ann Birch rode her lovely TB X race horse, and worked on getting him rounder with more bend. Of the several riders that were helped an improvement was seen in all.
Nick Turner rode a 16 yrs Australian TB which he was taking to Burghley.  Nick bravely did some practice teaching as did Mandy Luesley.  They both did a great job, and Judy also offered some constructive help and tips to them.
I was lucky enough to have two lessons, one on Alison Lidstone’s and Neil Memery’s delightful 5 yr old which has been so successful at all his events with Alison.  Also on my son’s PC eventer.  With both, Judy was constructive, positive and encouraging.
How lucky we are to be part of this fabulous Association which offers us so many opportunities to learn and improve, in a relaxed atmosphere and with like-minded souls.
Thank you Judy and thank you to the F and I Association.
Tuesday 24th June 2008
(report by Caro Haynes)

F & I Seminar – Hartpury Equine Veterinary and Therapy Centre

Well can I start by saying on behalf of everyone who attended WHAT A FANTASTIC DAY! It was great to see some new faces and also some new BHSI’s who had travelled a long way (across the water) to be with us.
The day started promptly even though the weather was not in favour of anyone who had a long journey to Hartpury. The turnout was excellent so we split into 2 groups for the first sessions. I joined a group with Tim Galer in the Treatment room where we talked about Strangles and observed him scoping a horse with a history of respiratory problems. It was interesting to hear that the Strangles vaccine is not as good as had been hoped; it was found that injections needed to be redone frequently if in a high risk area. However, the Animal Health Trust is working on a blood test for this highly contagious disease. Tim talked about how he would or wouldn’t treat diagnosed animals and the reasons behind this. The scoping was fascinating with the images clearly shown to everyone. There were questions from all of us throughout this session.
We then joined Kathryn Lankervis, to watch her put a horse through its paces on a treadmill. There was an ECG readout on the computer whilst another piece of equipment showed the speed and tilt of the treadmill. At 4.4 metres per second the horse was traveling as fast as Paula Radcliffe in a marathon, its fastest was 6 metres per second. The treadmill is great for repeated work as every variable can be kept the same as the last time it was used. Towards the end of this session a discussion took place within our group on Lactic Acid and on the use of Nasal Strips.

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F and I Annual Convention – Jumping with Di Lampard

We were all exceptionally lucky to have the chance to receive some expert coaching
from Di Lampard over the two days at Addington.
Each day consisted of five groups of the same horse and rider combinations to encourage continuity. Although each group was of a different level of horse experience the same message came across – improvement of the basics.
Di used a very useful warm up routine highlighting straightness and balance. Within the trot and the canter we worked on changing the gears up and down through the different stride lengths whilst maintaining the discipline of holding a line on the inside track, softness through our seats but an effective and influential upper body.
Di then talked a little about using pole work to improve the quality of the canter, rhythm and the rider’s ability to ride correct lines. The pole work exercise Di then used (quite forward related distances on straight and curving lines) showed up weaknesses in some of the horses’ canter work. This did improve over the course of the session along with the rider’s ability to ride positive and straight approaches.

Read more F and I Annual Convention – Jumping with Di Lampard

Annual Course – Dressage with Carl Hester 

Britain’s number one rider and trainer, Carl Hester, honoured us at our Annual Course at Addington this January.  What a treat it was for us all to have two days to gain an insight into Carl’s training methods and system. First on was myself riding Billy the stallion.  Suppleness was the main theme and Carl’s take was that a rider should be able to position the neck almost anywhere; this proved difficult for a number of us throughout the day.
Day two gave me a much more supple horse and we progressed to straightening exercises using shoulder-in and then changes. That was a laugh, as being a rather laid-back person my flying changes generally happen at some point within the next 10 seconds and Carl expected them within 1.  (And being male I find it difficult to concentrate on more than one thing at a time, therefore becoming rather challenged when faced with multiple instructions! Still I’m told it made entertaining viewing.) Summarising, my experience was inspirational with excellent training.

Read more Annual Course – Dressage with Carl Hester