Category Archives: Guest Blog

Annus Horribilis – Looking Forward to 2017


Hey guys, I’m really sorry I have been a little absent of late.  2016 Has been my annus horribilis!  After a very long illness my beloved mother lost her fight for life on 22 November 2016.  It was a blessed release.

I am thankful for the time I had with mum, I am grateful that I was lucky enough to have been her daughter and I will hold her in my heart forever.

I will honour her by living my life to the full and making 2017 my ‘optimus anno aeternum’ or ‘Best Year Ever’.

I hope you will join me as the blog picks up momentum again.  I have lots planned, just need to get my head sorted over the festive period and get some rest so that I can hit the ground running come January.

Have fun and look out for each other.

Patricia – The Dressage Tipster



5 Equestrian Blogs I Highly Recommend

I am privileged to have connected to many equestrians throughout the time I have been blogging not least some fellow bloggers who have amazing talent to share with you.  Check out these entertaining and informative equestrian blogs that I highly recommend. Continue reading 5 Equestrian Blogs I Highly Recommend

Guest Post: Is being a great rider out of your reach?

Is being a GREAT RIDER out of your reach? A guest blog written for DressageHafl

What do you think separates the great from the good? Do you look at the so called ‘elite’ riders and wish that was you?

Great RiderI’ll get straight to the point, their success is the result of their philosophy; they will undoubtedly have a great attitude; a state of mind that says ‘I can do this’.

Is this something you feel is out of your reach?


I would suggest to you, very strongly, that it isn’t. Anyone can train themselves to be positive and have a great attitude. This is something that is available to each and every one of us.  Those who have achieved great success, be it in the competition ring or in their ability to help other riders are not necessarily more skilful and are certainly no more intelligent than you, what separates them is their burning desire and positive mindset. There is absolutely nothing wrong with aiming to be really successful in competition. Yes, none of us can escape the classical versus competition dressage comparisons; the suggestion that somehow if you strive for competitive success you must not be all that concerned with your horse’s welfare – physical or mental. Perhaps you are devoid of compassion in your quest for the ribbons and only if you train with a classical trainer who has never competed could you possibly have a conscience.

Part of our human make up is about our hierarchy of needs, one of which is to realise our potential and live life to the full. My view is that there’s nothing wrong with being a competitive performer at all, but particularly when it is the result of dedication, devotion and discipline.

So, what do you think separates the great from the good? It comes down to hard work. Is this something you feel is out of your reach? You can create spectacular results through daily practice. We all have the capacity for hard work.

All very motivational, all very nice to read I hear you cry … but HOW?

1. Baby Steps:

How many of you are looking for that revolutionising tip that will transform your riding ability overnight? Even though this is what we think we want, it’s all a little bit scary isn’t it? Truth is that no-one wants to make massive changes to the way they think, feel and behave. We would rather stay in our comfort zone.

Great RiderThe best way to get to your own personal greatness is through small, continuous steps, which I call baby steps. This is how I got to publish my book The Crystal System, by taking small steps towards my ultimate goal of publishing my own work. The idea was pretty scary, the reality is that with baby steps I got there. Doesn’t seem so scary now does it? Can you make small improvements every day? Is this something you feel is out of your reach?

2. Rider Focus:

There’s so much to do isn’t there? One of the key reasons that riders fail is that they try to make too many changes too soon. The most successful riders are focused. The elite are more than just focussed they are single-minded. They have a very clear picture of what it is they want to do and they have the self discipline to stick to it. Identify what’s important, get some priority and chip away at the issues.

There are so many tools to help you get focus, far too many for me to go into in one blog post. Here are just a few that would help you if you set out to learn more about them.

· making your success a habit
· staying in the present
· writing things down
· goal setting
· ride planning
· creating milestones
· crystallising your thinking
· constant and consistent evaluation and re-evaluation
· control of breathing

Anything there that you feel is out of your reach?

3. Take Action: You’re trying to develop a skill, right? So, make the time to practice. If you really devote yourself to riding well, with the right help, you could reach a place of mastery. Enthusiasm, eagerness, readiness, willingness, call it what you will. Being willing to do something is admirable. But without action you are unworthy of admiration. Discipline is the assertion of willpower over more base desires; you will need this to succeed.

You must take action otherwise you will simply never get started. Whilst, many regard procrastination as a useful way of identifying what is important to us personally, this on the basis that it is rare to procrastinate when one truly values the task at hand. Others believe that procrastination results in stress, a sense of guilt and creation of a crisis that could be avoided. As with all things, you will need to find the balance.

Do you feel that you are unable to take action? Is this out of your reach?


Part of the value I hope to add to you as a rider is to be a catalyst for positive change and to gently challenge you to get better, to grow, to be great – regardless of your starting point. Here Are Some Challenges I Offer You …

  1. Set your internal Sat Nav destination and make a decision to begin on the road to your very own          success (whatever that might look like)
  2. Take a baby step towards it
  3. Encourage a fellow equestrian to join you, get an accountability buddy
  4. Do something that frightens you – feel the fear and do it anyway
  5. Write a list of challenges you have with your horse and/or riding and prioritise them
  6. Give your coach a thank you ‘something’ (card / gift / email / message) but make sure you say why you are thanking them
  7. Take one lesson with a different coach or attend a clinic. Get out of your comfort zone
  8. Stop comparing yourself to others. Be you
  9. Listen well. You need to be good at listening, I mean really good. Seems simple but it’s outrageously difficultDressage
  10. Improve at least one thing, every session
  11. Simplify. Clear out the clutter. Get clear about what you are doing
  12. Stand for excellence, in fact be most excellent!
  13. Read a great book – Might I suggest The Crystal System, by Patricia Pitt … lol
The theme of my book is that clarity precedes mastery and the more clearly you look for what you want, the more powerfully you can generate the result. Hope you’ve enjoyed my food for thought on how you can become a great rider, or at least set you on the road to greatness.
Great Rider
Anything there that you feel is out of your reach?  I think not!

Continue reading Guest Post: Is being a great rider out of your reach?

Retraining Of Racehorses – Dressage

I had a super message from Equipepper about my Collectives Marks series of posts and how they had helped her, so I asked her to guest blog for me on the subject of Dressage for Ex Racehorses  …

Here’s what she has to say …

How To Approach Dressage With Ex Racehorses

Thoroughbreds and ex racehorses are becoming more popular amongst amateur and competitive riders. There are many reasons for this, the most obvious being that they are usually fairly cheap to buy compared to a well-bred warmblood. However, there is no reason why a sound ex racehorse cannot do well in other disciplines such as dressage.

Why Choose Thoroughbred Ex Racehorses?

As a breed, thoroughbreds are incredibly athletic and are often very common in the bloodlines of top sports horses. Some of them also have very good movement, which is a vital base for any dressage horse. My ex racer naturally has correct uphill paces, even after two years of National Hunt racing.  Thoroughbreds tend to be quite smart. This is both a good and a bad thing when it comes to retraining them. They tend to pick up what you want them to do quite quickly and they remember it. However, if they don’t want to do something, they can be very creative at finding a way around doing it which you might struggle to undo.


Retraining Racehorses For Dressage : Considerations

The majority of racehorses will probably have no schooling experience at all. Not only this, but a jockey’s riding style is very different to that of the average rider. Therefore dressage will be a completely new experience for them and there are lots of little things you need to consider when it comes to riding them. Continue reading Retraining Of Racehorses – Dressage

7 Ways to Listen to Your Horse by Horse Listening

Dressage Enthusiasts!


I get so many messages from riders experiencing problems where my response is  “Ok, step back, take a good look at what is happening, try to get to the heart of the matter”.

Often it is not what the rider thinks is happening, the signs were there but they did not see them.   For this reason, I am absolutely delighted to be able to bring you an extremely popular blog by the the hugely popular Equestrian Blogger Kathy Farrokhzad giving you 7 ways you can listen to your horse.


7 Ways to Listen To Your Horse

Horse Listening

Photo Credit: NBanaszak Photography

Listening to your horse is such an important part of riding and horse ownership. In fact, the rider who is ignorant of the messages her horse sends is missing out on sometimes vital information. Knowing how to understand and correctly interpret the signs and behaviors of your horse allows you to know when something is off. The information can inform everything from general health care, to training and conditioning programs, to your horse’s mental well-being.

How can you learn to listen effectively, in a way that positively affects your horse? Here are a some ideas.

Continue reading 7 Ways to Listen to Your Horse by Horse Listening

Meet A Finalist: The Dressage Tipster by Haynet


There are now four days left to vote in this years hotly contended Haynet Equestrian Blogger of the Year 2014. Every day this week, we are showcasing each finalist promoting their blog and why they should have your vote.

Today’s promotional post is from Patricia who writes the super The Dressage Tipster. Here in her own words is why she started writing her equestrian blog:
Continue reading Meet A Finalist: The Dressage Tipster by Haynet

Dress it for the Vertical by Aspire Equestrian

My dear dressage enthusiasts, I got to thinking, maybe you are not all blinkered and utterly obsessed with dressage – bit odd but might be true.  Vertical 2Maybe some of you, dare I say it, actually jump your horses over something more than a cavelleti.  Well, if this is the case and despite me knowing absolutely zilch about jumping, today I have a treat for you.

It is my absolute pleasure to introduce to you Wiola Grabowska.  Wiola is a freelance coach and founder of Aspire Equestrian Riding Academy which focuses on thorough rider education at grassroots levels of dressage, jumping and eventing.  I asked Wiola to do a guest post, for me focussing on how dressage training benefits the show jumper and to my delight she has given us 2 dressage exercises that will make a real difference to your jumping.

So, for those of you who actually ask your horse’s hind legs to leave the ground, here’s what she has to say.  Enjoy …

Dress it for the Vertical – Two dressage moves that every jumping rider needs to do very well

There are at least five things that matter to you when you turn around the corner in your lovely three beat canter and head straight for colourful vertical waiting for you across the long diagonal of the arena and these are: Continue reading Dress it for the Vertical by Aspire Equestrian

Learning to ride with the help of the internet by Dressage Hafl

Having guest blogged for Tanja Arzberger of  about beating competition nerves she has graciously returned the favour and penned this fascinating insight into whether the internet helps or hinders your dressage progress.  Enjoy …

Knowledge Is Power?! Learning to ride with the help of the internet

Remember the times when you used to see a doctor whenever something felt wrong with you? Today a quick and easy Google search of your symptoms can lead to something unexpected:Learning to ride

Continue reading Learning to ride with the help of the internet by Dressage Hafl

Fighting Competition Demons – Guest Post for Dressage Hafl

It’s always nice to make contact with fellow bloggers, so when Tanja from got in touch and asked for assistance with competition demons it was pretty timely as I had already planned to write a piece on the subject, having been asked by another rider for advice.

So, to see another great post in my series of Real Life Rider issues click through to …

Dressage Half

Patricia – The Dressage Tipster