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.
Moving on to the jumping exercises, Di worked along the same lines of improving the rhythm and planning the approach. She was also disciplined about finishing every exercise (or round) with a balanced rhythmic circle and a controlled calm balanced halt.
The second day followed on in a similar format, again focussing on improving our own balance and position to correctly influence our horses. There was a noticeable improvement in all the horses on the second session. Di’s quiet, relaxed but disciplined approach was evident in her coaching and seemed to instil all the riders with confidence. It was a very inspiring two days.
report by Caroline Moore BHSI