By Nadia Aslam
Photos by Avid Photography
Have you ever been in that situation? You’re at an incredible equestrian event, surrounded by well respected riders, trainers and experts. And then, you’re on your way home and you didn’t ask anyone a single question? We’ve all kicked ourselves for doing this I’m sure.
Whenever I’m at a big event, I just can’t wait to ask questions, and even though I’m not riding or competing here – I know that I can learn a lot!
Here are some ideas on how you can find the time and opportunity to ask questions even when you’re not at a clinic. This works for trainers, riders you admire and judges too!
- Bring Homemade Cookies
Not sure how to start the conversation? “Swap you a homemade cookie for a training tip!”
- Offer To Help
This is one of my favourite ways to learn, either in advance, or when you arrive at the event – go up and ask if you can help out. This is probably one of the best ways to learn.
- Asking Judges
If you’re competing at a show and want to ask a judge a question, it can be pretty hard to find them with a moment free. Why not go up and ask if they’ll have time later for you to ask one question? Every time I’ve asked, the judge has been more than happy for me to ask my question when they’re finished for the day. After all, judges become judges because they want to help people learn how to improve their riding!
- JUST DO IT
We’re a friendly bunch, us horse riders! Why not just go straight out and ask someone a question? “Hey, saw you practicing Showmanship and your horse sets up so well, how do you get him to do it?” Just imagine if someone came up to you? I bet you’d be more than happy to answer!
- It’s too late
Got home from the event and realise you didn’t ask any questions? This happened to a friend of mine. She had been at an event with Stephanie Lynn and didn’t get chance to ask her question, so when she got home she emailed her, and guess what…. Stephanie wrote back answering her question and even gave her some training exercises to work on!
- Or – send in your questions to us
Still not sure if you can do it? Send in your questions to us and let us know who you want to ask – we’ll see if we can make it into a feature!
Just imagine how much you could learn if you took every opportunity!