Pamela Schuler - a synopsis of 2016 so far

Good Afternoon Pryde’s Team,

What a busy January/February we have had here - not quite sure where the months went but here is a little synopsis of how our first 2 months of 2016 have gone:

January 2016

After getting over the holiday season, we recommenced the horses back into work. We have 4 main horses that we are working on this season. Two of our ‘original’ horses (Lassie Creek & Riverside Paddy Williams - FEI Level) and 2 young horses (Kikki PVS & Hugo PVS).

The new year kicked in and my motivation and hunger to compete, train and kick some ‘horsey’ goals just jumped into overdrive. From 2015 not quite going to plan, however teaching me a lot; I am very much looking forward to making my presence felt on the competition scene with the horses when the time is right again. 

Kim Weston Clinic - 22nd & 23rd January

My long time coach, mentor and friend Kim Weston was visiting Janie Carcary’s property in Ayr and we took Lassie Creek & Hugo PVS with us.

I was keen to see how Lassie Creek was coming back into work and we didn’t disappoint in Kim’s eyes. I was super happy that Kim thought our work was some of the most relaxed and harmonious that we have displayed to date. As with most horses that are training the Grand Prix dressage work and particularly ones that are getting on in age (Lassie is 17 now), its not so much about riding all the movements from the test over and over but more importantly keeping her supple, gymnastic, loose and fit, while training for obedience, effectiveness of the half halt and aids etc. She knows all the base movements of the GP test; We just have to grow in confidence, strength and communication. 

I completed my last lesson with so much confidence to continue working by myself as I knew and felt we were on the right track. 

Hugo PVS as always is delighting me in his ability to produce quality work. I have always said with this particular horse that he was going to need time to develop in his brain. He has such a ‘cheeky’ character and is like a kid at ‘Disneyland’ when we go somewhere or the atmosphere is a little more intense. He has a huge range of gear in all 3 paces but in the early stages and still at times I have not been able to control these. 

We are now working all the Elementary movements and his brain and focus is certainly catching up with his ability to deliver the work. Kim and I are both really excited about this ones competition future. 

Open Door Training Session - 30th January

The weekend after PVS Training conducted our very first ‘Open Door Training Session’ which is going to be a monthly occurrence. We had a great group of over 10 attendees visit the property on Saturday, 30th January to watch myself train Hugo PVS and Kikki PVS for the morning.

It was a very hot and humid Saturday and we were all counting our blessings that the huge rain clouds stayed over the sun for the morning as this gave us a little reprieve from the direct heat. 

Spectators commented afterwards saying: 

“It was better or had the same value as getting a lesson” 
“Well explained”
“Good step by step approach to long term training
"Attendees got to see first hand how to approach certain training hurdles while progressing forward with the work". 

Hugo (7yr old WB Gelding) displayed some of the work required for a horse moving into Elementary and progressing from working paces to collected paces and medium paces.

Kikki (3yr old WB Mare) who is newly back had her first experience in front of an audience, load speaker and gazebo etc. We got to display how to introduce horses to a new atmosphere and how to develop a newly backed horses aids to progress with their training. It was a great 2 sessions followed by a morning tea of tea, coffee and cake. 

Our next open training session is on Saturday, 12th March 2016

February 2016

February has been an exciting but also disappointing month. To start with the disappointing news:

Some disappointing news

We have just found out that Lassie Creek has PPID which lead to her developing a mild case of Laminitis. After consulting with the vets it looks like we caught the laminitis early enough so that no permanent damage has been done. I also had a ‘gut feeling’ that she may of been progressing down the path of having PPID, so the vets ran some tests and we received the results that she does have PPID (Equine Cushings Disease) At least we know the cause of why she developed the laminitis and the vets are now setting us up with a management medication program for her. 

After consulting with Rod from Prdye’s we have also adjusted her diet and have switched her over to Pryde’s Sport and Fibre to keep the diet as Low GI, Starch, Sugar and Grain free as possible. 

The vets has given us a good chance of being able to return to the competition ring and perform a Grand Prix Dressage Test later this year if she is ready for it. 

Libby Welch Clinic - February 6th & 7th 

We travelled back to Janie Carcary’s property in Ayr for lessons with Libby Welch. This was my first time under the guidance of Libby and I was very impressed with her attention to detail but empathetic and harmonious way of working with the horse. Due to Lassie being diagnosed with PPID and developing Laminitis earlier, I took up Riverside Paddy Williams and Hugo PVS. 

I’ll just list a couple of little things that we working on with myself and the horses.

Riverside Paddy Willams

Quickening his reaction to my aids
Re-introducing piaffe
Developing the passage
Clarity of the walk with pole work

Hugo PVS

It was time to stop treating him like a young horse and start asking him to step up to the higher levels, which mean my attention to the work also had to sharpen as well.
Exercises to sharpen my attention while also developing his lateral work further.
Walk/Canter & Canter/Walk transitions
1/4 pirouettes in walk
Learning to count canter for medium and collected paces for movements

I was very happy with the work that Libby gave us and I look forward to working with her again. 

In-House Dressage Competition - 20th February

PVS Training ran the very popular and annual ‘In-House Dressage Competition’ for our students on the 20th February. We had a total of 19 riders attend the afternoon of competition, with our 3 youngest riders being on the lead line performing their first dressage tests. 

The competition is open to all of PVS Trainings past and present students. It is a great opportunity for the riders who have never attended a competition to experience the procedure, atmosphere and rider through a test in an environment that is very similar to a competition but without the pressure of a real competition. 

This is the 4th year that the competition has been running and our out of town clients and more experienced clients love attending this event to bring new horses, ride through a higher level test or just gain more experience before the competition season kicks off officially.

Senior Champion was won by Heidi Bliesner with her horse ‘Flash’ 
Junior Champion was Ashlyn Hourn with her horse ‘Vally’. 

Both of these riders received a PVS embroidered PVC gear bag kindly donated by ‘Bags by the Bay’.

I just concluded February with our regular clinic at Woodstock hosted by Heidi Bliesner of ‘Canter Home’. 

On a seperate note, we have a new addition to the PVS family in our beautiful Dalmatian, Oliver. He is settling in very well and like all the other dogs, loves it when the horses feed buckets come out cause then he can steal the BioMare Cubes and Response - hehe