Nydia – Dressage Training at Appin
We caught up with our equestrian expert and “Eventing Mum” Nydia on Sunday while she had a dressage training lesson with Anne at Appin Equestrian Centre in East Lothian.
Nydia arrived in the horse box with her husband Adrian, her two young girls and – of course – Indi who was looking fabulously fit. With a beautiful glossy coat and fire in her belly after having had a well-deserved week off, Indi was now ready to get back to work in the preparation for the qualifiers at Skipton for Badminton 2019.
Once Indi was saddled up and ready for her lesson Nydia did some initial stretches on her front legs several times to stretch her legs after the long journey in the horse box. Once in the warm arena India was able to warm up properly and soften all her muscles and lengthen her neck line ready to perform a full body work out as the lesson got underway.
Nydia and Indi will have a weekly dressage lesson with Anne to help them both to slow things down and “get the beat back” so that when they are in the dressage ring they can “trust each other” and know how to get show off Indi’s expressive body language to its full potential.
Watching Nydia and Indi in their lesson with Anne was mesmerising, as every attention to detail was paid to help both horse and rider perfect every stride to achieve something very special indeed.
The importance of having a such talented riding instructor as Anne – herself a Scottish Elementary Champion – is invaluable, able to provide expert observations as Nydia and Indi go through their dressage routine and helping them to work together in perfect harmony on every element of their performance. Often Adrian will video the lesson so that Nydia can replay the lesson when she gets home and then practice between lessons, but as their girls continue to grow he has his hands full juggle everything and keep them happy & entertained while mum is in the saddle.
Once Indi and Nydia were warmed up its was clear to see that Indi’s stride beginning to lengthen and, as Anne put it, Nydia was “feeling, not reacting to” her every movement. Throughout the lesson, Anne and Nydia discussed each aspect of Nydia & Indi’s dressage routine – where they scored their best marks; where they felt weakest; which sides Indi performed best. Anne would then expertly tailor the lesson on-the-fly with techniques to polish their performance to perfection.
After the end of the lesson Indi was washed down and walked around the yard to cool off, followed by a special feed balance her electrolytes and prevent a build up of lactic acid after the intense workout.
We had a quick chat with Nydia after her lesson, who was supposed to be having a weekend off, but as well as this lesson she also competed in & won a jumping competition at the legendary Ian Stark’s own Equestrian Centre on the previous day. Nydia also works for Ian Stark and is in the middle of recruiting 150 volunteers for future events, so there really is no rest for this talented Eventing Mum.
It was also lovely to see Nydia wearing her new Musto breeches, which she kindly reviewed for us here.
After the Badminton Trials (which she is hoping to qualify for at the higher level this year), she is heading to the Blair Horse trails in the middle of August so we wish them well with all their preparations and look forward to catching up with her next time.