August Newsletter

August Newsletter

Well the months seem to have run away from me as we find ourselves in August already.

Last month I experimented with using a few new venues, which gave us the safety and comfort of two gorgeous indoor arenas, one at Yalambi Farm Stud near Margaret River and the other at Oakford Equine Hospital in Oakford. It was a bit of a treat and ensured we could continue with lessons even if it poured down in the winter months. Both venues had wonderful surfaces and for the rest of this year we will continue to use Yalambi Farm Stud, but will return home to Rebecca’s venue on Peter’s Way later this month for lessons in the Oakford area.

The Oakford Clinic was our second Lateral Clinic in the series and the last one will be in Albany on 24-25th August. This Albany Clinic only has 1 space left but if there is enough demand we could add in the 26-27th Mon-Tues to accommodate more riders.

Jane is finally on her way! Who on earth is Jane you maybe asking….. Jane is an Equine Skeleton I have been trying to get over here from Qld, which was generously given to me by Anita Evers. Jane is going to be a valuable asset to use for coaching and clinic teaching. I feel privileged to be given the responsibility for Jane to live with me and share her story.

Some of you may be familiar with Anita, however for those of you who are not, Anita is a hoof trimmer and endurance rider, as well as a starter and trainer of horses. She has done 6 equine dissections with Sharon May-Davis. Anita did not just attend these clinics but also assisted, working with Sharon and Libby Franz on two skeletons. She has built two whole equine skeletons for herself and has several legs and spines and incomplete skeletons that she refers to regularly.

When Anita flies over, she and I will be doing a once-of 2 day clinic on “THE BUILDING OF JANE”. Dates are 14-15th September 2019 at Keysbrook and will be a unique rare opportunity to learn more about equine biomechanics.

On this joint clinic with Ann Montgomery and Anita Evers, we will be inviting a limited number of riders to be involved in seeing the skeleton being constructed, to handle and see the bones of the horse at close quarters, to ask questions and to discuss the biomechanics of the horse as we put Jane back together from her traveling boxes.
Booking for this and other clinics are on the website www.annmontgomery.com.au

Tomorrow I am exceptionally lucky to be flying to Darwin to do a couple of clinics, and it will be a welcome warm up from the cold, wet weather we have been experiencing in Perth.

Up and coming Clinics

8-9th Darwin NT
10-11th Darwin NT
16th Fri Oakford
17th Oakford
19th Murray ARC: contact the club for booking.
23rd Albany Private Lessons: contact Sarah Williams on tegz1@hotmail.com or 0488 695 157
24-25th Albany Lateral Clinic.
31st Aug-1st Sept Baldivis ARC : contact the club for booking.
14-15th The Building of Jane Clinic.

Booking for all clinics are on the website www.annmontgomery.com.au

Happy Riding.

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Newsletter July 2019

Newsletter July 2019

 

 

Well, over the past month I have managed to catch up on a lot of office work – this is stuff that I sort of hide from, ignore and turn a blind eye to, until the office, calendar and website scream at me for attention.  I never seem to be able to see the desk-top and often wonder what is this desk made of, wood, metal or melamine?  Then all is revealed, and it looks nice and orderly for a short time until I’m back into flat out work mode and everything piles up again.

Each year I host some of the girls from Albany who come to have a few days intensive training, and a few weeks ago this happened once again. It’s great fun for all of us – for the girls it’s the excitement of packing up and making the 4-5 hour drive, as they come in a mini-convoy, and for spending exclusive time with their horses and friends.

Each day they have private lessons in the morning and then later in the day we do a video review of parts of their lessons. Usually they go out for a few hours’ around midday and return to have their second lesson as a group in the afternoon to consolidate what they have learnt in the morning.

Evenings are spend together having nibbles, great discussions, dinner, a drink or two and big doses of laughter.

We decided on this visit to leave one afternoon session as the horses were tired, and instead went for a brain-refreshing trail ride in the forest that surrounds my home. OK so we did get wet, but it was just gorgeous, with the smell of the forest and the views over the countryside as the mist cleared from the hills and valleys.

I have to say I look forward to these weekend stays as much as the riders, it’s a great way to get a lot of good training in, with repetitions clocked up in both the horse and the rider in a short space of time. It’s also an excellent time to have in-depth discussions about issues the rider’s may be struggling with, and the with rider’s supporting each other. In this intensive training there is a lot of wrapping myelin around the nerves each time you do a movement or even think about the movement, which allows the messages to be sent quicker from the brain to the muscles and body parts.

Contact me if you have a few riders who would be interested in getting a small group together to do the residential stays. You can also find more details on prices and sleeping arrangements on the website under Learning Opportunities.

Our first of three Lateral clinics was held at Margaret River and with the worry of rain on my mind I managed to get this clinic booked into the Yalambi Farm Stud new indoor arena. Well, this ended up being a great decision, as it did rain, but we all stayed dry and enjoyed the beautiful arena and surrounds. I’ve also booked it for next month’s clinic, as the riders really enjoyed it.   

The Lateral clinic went really well, with day one going into detail on the rider’s seat and aids in lateral movements and day 2 covering the detail within the horse and how to uncover and fix ‘blocks’ the horse may be having.  Both days have a workshop for all the riders at midday and a short video feedback of the riders doing the movements so they can see what is happening.

Our next Lateral Clinic is in Oakford is also going to be in a indoor at Oakford Equine Hospital on 20-21 July. I am also available on the Friday 19th July at Oakford for Private lessons.  All booking is via the website www.annmontgomery.com.au

Happy Riding.

Dates for July:

19th Private lessons Oakford.

20-21st Oakford Lateral Clinic

27-28th Margaret River Yalambi clinic.

August

4th Stoneville

7-12th Darwin NT

16th (Fri PM) Oakford

17th Oakford

19th (Mon) Murray ARC

24-25th Albany Lateral Clinic.

31-1st Baldivis ARC

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Newsletter June 2019

Newsletter June 2019

 

Hi All, I’m just on my way back from Darwin after two further 6 rider format clinics which I have found very rewarding. I take my hat off to Alison Osborne for still running these clinics and am very thankful that she enabled the riders to continue with their education and building on their skills, even though she couldn’t ride in either clinic herself due to knee issues she has been experiencing over the past 8 frustrating months, however she is finally beginning to heal and recover.
Alison sat at the side during the clinics, watching all the lessons and encouraging every combination. Thankfully, she is slowly returning to riding and should be 100% fit to ride by August when I return.

This is Ruth Hanssen who I have worked with over the past 3 years in Darwin. I am at this moment helping Ruth to feel a better connection of her femur into the pelvis to give her more strength on the left side of her body. With her left leg being weaker she slips to the left which causes her horse to lose balance left.

Fortunately for me, Ruth had had to use one of her riding school ponies at the clinic as her horse, who is bigger, had an injury and so I wouldn’t have been able to reach Ruth. This gorgeous riding school horse allowed me to walk alongside her with my hands on Ruth’s knee and pelvis to give her the feeling of what area she needed to fire up to keep her femur and seat bone in place.

I have great admiration for Ruth as she is a coach herself and does so much for the Pony Club in Darwin, and all she learns she then hands on to her students. Imagine if we could have had this information as children in Pony Club when we were young!

Lateral Cinics

You may have seen I’ve been doing a few blogs recently in a lead-up to several clinics.

Over the next 3 months there will be 3 ‘Lateral’ clinics held over two days.

The first one is near Margaret River at Cowaramup on 22-23 June, Oakford 20-21 July, Albany 24-25 August. 

Each clinic will go into what the rider needs to be aware of in their own seat and aids, how to teach the horse the movement in a clear step by step process, how as a rider to notice and feel the details of what is good, what to do when it goes wrong and why this is happening.

Each day there will be a private lesson and workshop on the theory and discussion to clarify the information. We will also do video feedback each day.

These clinics are suitable for all levels from the starting of lateral work right through to the rider and horse doing half pass in trot or canter and the fine tuning that may be required.

These clinics only have space for 9 riders over the 2 days and all lessons are private lessons of 45 minutes.

Bookings for all these Lateral clinics are now open on the website.

The building of Jane
My blogs on the fascination of bones is a lead-up to a very exciting ONE-OFF 2-day un-mounted Workshop, “The building of Jane” on 14-15th September.

I have been given a full-sized Skeleton of a horse, who is named Jane. Jane is travelling from Mackay Qld to Perth in boxes and it will be a unique opportunity for seeing Anita Evers (the original owner of Jane) and myself build her over two days.

The fascination of bones and the building of Jane – This two-day workshop will take you through a journey of what lies deep within the horse, to the framework that the horse is built on. Over the two days we will build Jane and have discussions on the bone structure of horses. We will also demonstrate some of the major muscles and tendons and how they relate to movement.

Anita Evers is a hoof trimmer and endurance rider as well as a starter and trainer of horses. She has done 6 dissections with Sharon May-Davis. Anita did not just attend these clinics but also assisted, working with Sharon and Libby Franz on two skeletons. She has built two whole equine skeletons for herself and has several legs and spines and incomplete skeletons that she refers to regularly. The booking for this clinic will open in the next week.

Belinda Bolsenbroek

One more piece of exciting news is that over the next year I will be working with Belinda Bolsenbrook as I have been selected to train with her. I’m extremely excited about working with her again in October and sharing what I learn with all my students. So, get ready for new information and detail coming your way after each training session with her. You can find more information on Belinda here belindabolsenbroek.com

Clinics in June are limited as I am taking a bit of downtime to give myself a bit of a rest from traveling, however I will be available for private lessons at home or locally if you want to contact me to take advantage of this. Drop me an email, text or use messenger to arrange a time and date.

What’s Coming up

JUNE
21 June Margaret River private lessons or assessment lessons, contact me directly to make a booking
22-23 June Margaret River 2 Day Lateral Clinic

JULY
6-7th July “The building of Jane”
13th July AHAA club (booking and details via the club)
19th July Oakford private lessons
20-21 July Oakford 2 Day lateral clinic
26th Margaret River private lessons or assessment lessons, contact me directly to make a booking
27-28th Margaret River Clinic.

For more info and booking information of these clinics please go to the calendar on my website annmontgomery.com.au/calendar/

 

Happy Riding

 

 

 

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The Fascination of bones – Part 2

The Fascination of bones – Part 2

 

Looking deeper into the bones

I notice how the rider’s pelvis is sitting on the saddle and horse, I ask myself is it level front to back and left to right. A saddle that does not fit or is not in balance can easily unbalance the rider’s pelvis. At times it is not the saddle, but the rider’s unbalanced pelvis, or it may be the horse’s back. The rider needs to learn how be aware of how their pelvis is sitting and how to correct it, because of the affect it has on the horse. If the rider’s pelvis is disturbed and not level, it creates unwanted pressure in areas of the horse’s back.

What I have noticed is that often this is mirrored by the horse. If the rider’s pelvis is down in the front, and in turn this is making for a hollow-back rider, the front of the rider’s pelvis inserts a downward pressure onto the thoracic spine of the horse (wither area). Due to this pressure the withers drop away along with the spine. This leads to the horse’s own pelvis being rotated out backwards, and due to this the head of the horse lifts.  The same can happen if the rider leans back and puts too much pressure into the back of the seat bones, as this creates pressure on the lumbar spine with a similar effect of the pelvis of the horse rotating backwards. With the pelvis of the horse being in this position, it is impossible for it to use its body and engage its hind legs. This results in the hind legs of the horse pushing out backwards more and more, the spinal processes begin to move closer which can create ‘kissing spine’, and the joints of the hind legs become opened to the maximum. All of this creates strain on the whole system.

If the rider’s seat bones are unlevel left to right it creates a pressure on one side of the horse’s spine and can make the rider slip to one side. The seat bone that is lower or ‘down’ more on one side creates a rotation of the ribcage, which then causes the ribs on that side to drop and the whole ribcage is swung to the opposite side, lifting the other seat bone higher. Now we have a crooked horse and rider.

As for the rider, they are left feeling helpless, as they feel like they are sitting in a hammock which is sinking down, possibly more to one side than the other. The horse is, at this stage, doing the best he can.  The horse may often resort to trying various options to give the rider what they are looking for – racing forward to try and maintain balance, slowing down, head tossing, losing straightness or a multitude of other stress reactions.

 

The building of Jane.

I met ‘Jane’ back in July 2014 in Mackay Qld, on one of my journeys of learning and discovery.

I had been told about this amazing woman called Sharon May Davies who did horse dissections, slowly peeling back the layers and explaining how the horse is constructed, how it moves and re-occurring issues as a result of this that she has found over her years of research.

Attending a dissection and working with Sharon over the 3 days, more and more information came to me and I was extremely thoughtful on the way back to WA about our responsibility as riders to the horse. I had even taken ‘Bones’ (model pelvis and spine) with me in my suit case to sit on the horse ‘layers’ so I fully understood what we as riders were sitting on.

Two days of this trip was studying the biomechanics of the horse, going into the mobility and movement of the horse, and this is where I met ‘Jane’ a full-sized horse skeleton. This was owned by Anita Evers and she had built it herself and had even managed to make it so that each leg could move.

This trip gave me a lot of knowledge and I have since worked with Sharon again in WA. This trip also opened up an opportunity to twice yearly travel to Mackay to work. On my last trip to Mackay, Anita offered me ‘Jane’ to have here in Keysbrook and she will be flying over to make sure ‘Jane’ is in a good new home.

When Anita flies over, she and I will be doing a once-of 2 day clinic on “THE BUILDING OF JANE”. Dates are 14-15th September 2019 at Keysbrook.

We will be inviting a limited number of riders to be involved in seeing the skeleton being constructed, to handle and see the bones of the horse at close quarters, to ask questions and to discuss the biomechanics of the horse as we put Jane back together from her travelling boxes.

Booking for all these clinics are on the website www.annmontgomery.com.au

 

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The fascination of bones -part 1.

The fascination of bones -part 1.

Why this facination of bones.

Though out my life and especially as my coaching developed in my 20s, I was more and more intrigued by the bones of the rider and the horse. And the movement patterns of both.

In my early years in coaching training, I was expected and examined in my exams on the conformation of the horse. This took me on a path of many hours, analysing how a horse was put together, if it was going to be able to do its job that the rider was expecting of it?. I was expected to as a coach to be able to advise a student at the pre purchase trial ride and viewing on suitability for purpose, conformation, temperament etc. before they went into the expense of having a horse vetted.   

Every time I coach a rider the first thing I focus in on is the bones, I almost see a stick man on a horse. My question to myself is, how are they stacked up? Is there flow in the body? Where are they tight or loose, strong or weak? How is this affecting their balance and the horse?

As soon as I set eyes on the pair; I’m noticing the symmetry of both, horse and rider, the way of movement.  The truth is I’m watching before they are even in the arena with me.

As I look deep into the horse at the bones and skeleton it gives me a great insight of what is needed as I analyse how the horse and rider are carrying their bones.

This is always a fascination for me, what does the rider actually sit on, as far as the skeleton is concerned. What is the saddle sitting on and if it doesn’t fit well how is this affecting the spine, spinal processes, ribs, shoulders of the horse. And how is that affecting the whole thoracic sling of the horse as it’s girthed up. 

 

 

Booking for all these clinics are on the website www.annmontgomery.com.au

 

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The Joy and frustration of Lateral Work-part 4

The Joy and frustration of Lateral Work-part 4

 

 

Creating the tools for both the rider and the horse.

I soon realized that I actually had to take responsibility for what was going wrong in my lateral work.

I needed to notice how the horse was affecting me and I was affecting the horse.

I quickly learnt to notice the pieces of which seat bone was sliding too much one side or the other, and how my own tone and strength was vastly different on each side of my body. This made me lean one way as my strong side shortened and clamped to the horse, whereas on the other side I slid off the horse’s long back muscle and dragged him with me, because I couldn’t support him. As I got more organized and equally toned, the better it all became, and I had space in my mind to start to address the horse’s imbalances and weakness.

Then it became clear that my horse also had a weak side which lengthened and felt like he was deflated on one side yet on the other I could feel his back more inflated. It was difficult to keep my seat bones equal and the surface under them wasn’t level. No wonder we were struggling.

By using in-hand work and explaining to the horse what I wanted, things began to improve. This let us move to the next step, exercises under saddle, which helped him build more strength, suppleness and understanding of how to use his body.

If things don’t flow I am always prepared to step back to find out where the confusion is, and explain it in small bite-size pieces until the horse understands. I relate it to me learning how to do things on the computer, I simply forget what I should know.

Both you and your horse can do lateral work. You just need to learn to notice, adjust and gain trust in each other.

To follow on from these blogs I am conducting several Lateral Clinics at different venues. I would love to work with you to help you overcome the challenges you may be experiencing.

Margaret River 22-23rd June.                               

Oakford Perth 20-21st July

Albany 24-25th August.

Prices vary due to travel and arena hire costs.

 

Booking for all these clinics are on the website www.annmontgomery.com.au

 

 

 

 

 

 

The fascination of bones -part 1.

The fascination of bones -part 1.

Though out my life and especially as my coaching developed in my 20s, I was more and more intrigued by the bones of the rider and the horse. And the movement patterns of both.
In my early years in coaching training, I was expected and examined in my exams on the conformation of the horse. This took me on a path of many hours, analysing how a horse was put together, if it was going to be able to do its job that the rider was expecting of it?. I was expected to as a coach to be able to advise a student at the pre purchase trial ride and viewing on suitability for purpose, conformation, temperament etc. before they went into the expense of having a horse vetted.
Every time I coach a rider the first thing I focus in on is the bones, I almost see a stick man on a horse. My question to myself is, how are they stacked up? Is there flow in the body? Where are they tight or loose, strong or weak? How is this affecting their balance and the horse?
As soon as I set eyes on the pair; I’m noticing the symmetry of both, horse and rider, the way of movement. The truth is I’m watching before they are even in the arena with me.
As I look deep into the horse at the bones and skeleton it gives me a great insight of what is needed as I analyse how the horse and rider are carrying their bones.
This is always a fascination for me, what does the rider actually sit on, as far as the skeleton is concerned. What is the saddle sitting on and if it doesn’t fit well how is this affecting the spine, spinal processes, ribs, shoulders of the horse. And how is that affecting the whole thoracic sling of the horse as it’s girthed up.

The Joy and frustration of Lateral Work-part 4

The Joy and frustration of Lateral Work-part 4

    Creating the tools for both the rider and the horse. I soon realized that I actually had to take responsibility for what was going wrong in my lateral work. I needed to notice how the horse was affecting me and I was affecting the horse. I quickly learnt...

The Joy and frustration of Lateral Work -part 3

The Joy and frustration of Lateral Work -part 3

Coordinating Lateral Work  Riders often find that the forward and sideways movement in lateral work is not smooth and flowing and is different on each rein. On one side the horse may be leading with the shoulders and therefore falling sideways due to too much neck...

The Joy & frustration of Lateral Work -part 2

The Joy & frustration of Lateral Work -part 2

Lateral Work to Straighten and Strengthen Lateral work will strengthen and allow engagement of your horse’s core muscles, encourage suppleness and bend through the body and promote bending of the joints of the hind leg.  As the hind leg moves forward it steps to the...

The Joys and frustrations of Lateral Work

The Joys and frustrations of Lateral Work

So often I find riders daunted, confused or frustrated by lateral work. They find things are not going exactly as they planned.

Whether it is leg yield, turn on the forehand, shoulder fore, shoulder in, travers, renvers, half pass or pirouettes; at some point the horse or rider often seems to hit a block in the training.

So why do lateral work anyway? What are the benefits for your horse?

At some stage you will need your horse to step sideways, whether it’s to move over in the stable or to open a gate while trail riding. Or you will want your horse to learn the basic or advanced dressage movements.

Newsletter May 2019

Newsletter May 2019

Hi All, It’s been a really busy month for me, full of great opportunities and learning. The Belinda Bolsenbroek clinic was fantastic. I was so humbled by her depth of knowledge, compassion and delivery of information. Throughout my life I have met and watched coaches...

Newsletter April 2019

Newsletter April 2019

Hi All It’s been a busy few weeks with Jenni and I doing our Mind and Body Mastery clinics in Keysbrook and Albany. Hence the newsletter is very late this month.This year was our 5th year of running these clinics together in Perth. For both Jenni and myself it is so...

JANUARY 2019 NEWS

Happy New Year to each and every one of you and your equine partners. Things are running a bit late on my side this month because I've had family visiting from overseas and I've been spending some quality time with them. I have to say that I had forgotten how noisy...

DECEMBER 2018 NEWS

I can’t believe 2018 is drawing to a close. For me, it’s been a great year, learning from 2017 to be a little kinder to myself and taking mini-breaks throughout the year, resulting in me not being as exhausted by the end of 2018 as I was the year before. Since I got...

NOVEMBER 2018 NEWS

Hi All, October was an amazing month, spent traveling and coaching in Queensland and New Zealand, in vastly different conditions for horses. QUEENSLAND In Queensland, the drought on the east coast has left people paying $44-$50 a bag for lucerne chaff, $16 a bale for...

 

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