When I left Canada in the spring of 2002, it was for an amazing one-year opportunity to be a working student in America for one of the world’s best riders. Little did I know that more incredible opportunities would keep coming up and keep me on this amazing traveling adventure for the next 16 years.
It’s 15 years late, but I’m coming home!
What have I been up to all this time, you ask? I have worked for four Olympians, learning how to run a stable and train a horse from the ground up. I have been a groom, a stable manager, and a rider. I have dusted more cobwebs, cleaned more stalls, and swept more aisle ways than you can imagine - all in exchange for my education. I have worked with horses worth millions of dollars, and others that you couldn’t give away, and learned from each of them. The different trainers I’ve studied with have each brought their own style and methods, which has given me a diverse toolbox to work with all the different types of horses that cross my path.
I have learned that in order to be a good trainer, I can’t have a “type” that I can ride - I need to be able ride them all. To be a good coach, I need to be able to teach my students - each with their own strengths and weaknesses - on all types of horses. To have a good sales business, I need to be able to make a well-trained horse easy to ride for a variety of people, do my best to recognize what is a good match and what is not, and represent that honestly.
The opportunities I’ve had have been outstanding and now I’m excited to bring the things I’ve learned back to Calgary, Alberta. The Calgary area has a thriving equestrian scene, including an active dressage community with many talented trainers, super horses, and fantastic amateur riders keeping the sport healthy in western Canada.
I will be settling in at Canadiana Equestrian Centre, just north west of the city, where I can welcome horses and riders from green to Grand Prix for training and lessons. I will also be offering a few select sales horses. Additionally, I am looking forward to supporting my clinic locations more regularly, as well as having the ability to add on new locations that I couldn’t travel to previously.
It will be so exciting to support the professional and amateur communities and do my part to help continue building the sport in Canada. While I will miss my friends and clients in the US, I’m counting on staying in touch with visits, clinics, and show seasons in the sunshine during the winter months. I am so looking forward to this next step!