Mar 12

Dressage Seat - Western Seat

Riding For Women

I am often asked about the difference between dressage and western riding. The answer is that apart from the saddle nothing – a good dressage seat is the exact same as a good western seat.

Riding is a movement art based on balance, feel and timing. This is illustrated in the videos below showing two exquisite riders: one dressage master, one western master.

Each rider is cantering, each is using two reins, and each is riding with balance, timing and feel so refined it makes me weep. Also, and most importantly, each horse is happy. The only difference between them is the type of saddle being used.

This video is of Hubertus Schmidt, Olympian:

Hubertus Schmidt on Youtube.




buck brannamanThis video is of Buck Brannaman who needs no introduction:

Buck Brannaman on Youtube.


So what this means for all of us is that our focus should be on honing our balance, feel and timing because it is this refinement that brings endless possibilities.

May 31

Lyme Disease

Riding For Women

The Rappahannock League for Environmental Protection (RLEP) has graciously sponsored a Lyme Forum. The first presentation included speakers addressing a wide range of topics such as tick identification, ongoing studies, symptoms and diagnosis.

tickThey also spoke about the main carriers of the deer tick/blacklegged tick (Ixodes scapularis), and to everyone’s surprise the primary culprit is the 4 legged white mouse (Peromyscus maniculatus). Yes that’s right, a mouse.

The second presentation was the showing of the film Under Our Skin. This film was content rich and frightening. It explored the history of the disease, the discovery of the bacterium that causes Lyme (Borrelia burdorferi), the difficulty diagnosing Lyme, the politics involved and how that affects the treatment available to a Lyme sufferers from both a medical standpoint as well as how insurance companies use the information. The film is available for sale, and is a worthwhile purchase.

Invaluable sources of information on Lyme Disease:

Under Our Skin,,
National Capital Lyme Disease Association,
International Lyme and Associated Diseases Society,
National Capital Lyme Disease Association,
Lyme Disease Association, Inc. Please note that this website provides referrals for Lyme-literate physicians,

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