Current Issue
December 2018 - Saddle Fit and Winter Weather
Written by by Jochen Schleese, CMS, CSFT, CSE
Saturday, 01 December 2018 00:00
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by Jochen Schleese, MSD, CSFT, CSE • ©2018 Saddlefit 4 Life® All Rights Reserved

Well it’s that time of year again, and you need to consider that your horse’s conformation may likely change over the next weeks and months as you go into winter mode. Of course, if you belong to the lucky riders who get to head south for the winter with your horse, some of these points may be of less importance to you. Even luckier are those of you who live in temperate climates all year round! However, we still recommend that you consider having your saddle fit checked 2x a year – once in spring just before competition season begins, and then again in the fall as you either change your training patterns, make your way south to continue competing, or even just want to continue to ride comfortably and make sure your horse is working at its optimal level.
December 2018 - Sanctuary: Ventura non-profit to the rescue.
Written by CRM
Friday, 30 November 2018 19:09
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The Humane Society of Ventura County is one of many organizations to open its doors wide to dogs, cats, horses and other domesticated animals in need of sanctuary from November’s wildfires.

December 2018 - Big Horse Feed & Mercantile
Written by by Kim F. Miller
Friday, 30 November 2018 19:01
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Temecula institution offers a wide array of horse keeping staples, everyday and special occasion apparel, plus gifts, gear and surprises.

by Kim F. Miller

“Wow!” is typically the first thing a new customer says when they enter Big Horse Feed & Mercantile in Temecula. It looks like a sizable place from the outside, but the sight of 8,000 square feet of merchandise still surprises. On a closer look, it’s not only the quantity that boggles the mind, it’s the quality and scope of the inventory. There are items for horses, people, dogs and cats and for a long list of activities and interests that comprise the equestrian and/or country lifestyle.

December 2018 - Werth’s Words of Wisdom
Written by by Nan Meek
Friday, 30 November 2018 02:22
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dressage news

Clinic with many-time Olympic and recent WEG gold medalist Isabel Werth is a remarkable weekend of learning.

by Nan Meek

It was raining the night of October 12 when the reigning “queen of dressage” Isabell Werth landed in Southern California for a two-day symposium at Ad Astra Stables in Encinitas, masterfully planned and presented by SH Productions’ Scott Hayes and his team.

Barely a month after decisively winning two gold medals with Bella Rose, in the Team and Grand Prix Special competitions at the 2018 World Equestrian Games in Tryon, Isabell was back in the USA to share her training philosophy and techniques.

December 2018 - Getting Started in Working Equitation
Written by by Nicole Chastain Price with Kip Mistral
Friday, 30 November 2018 02:13
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Have some serious fun!

by Nicole Chastain Price with Kip Mistral

I  am often asked how a rider new to working equitation can get started, and I have several suggestions for people just beginning to explore the sport to see if it might be right for their horses and themselves.

As a first step, I would suggest that riders interested in learning more about and getting started in working equitation should consult one of the websites of our two governing bodies in the United States, which are WE United and The Confederation for Working Equitation. There you can read about the history of the sport, its definition and the requirements. We offer multiple levels in working equitation: Children, Introductory, Novice A, Novice B, Intermediate A, Intermediate B, Advanced and Masters. We also have multiple phases: Dressage, Ease of Handling (How well you do the Obstacles), Speed (Obstacles at Speed) and a Team Cattle Phase. The Introductory level does not include a Speed Phase. At this stage in the U.S., the cattle phase is not usually offered, and if it is it is an optional phase.

December 2018 - Tips For Hard keepers
Written by By Dr. Kellon, Uckele Health & Nutrition
Friday, 30 November 2018 00:52
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For horses, at least, there is such a thing as “too thin.”

by Dr. Kellon, Uckele Health & Nutrition

Overweight horses are grabbing all the headlines, but horses that tend to be very thin can also be a major headache for their owners. While obesity is clearly to be avoided, there is such a thing as too thin.

Horses that are underweight have reduced performance capacity, reduced immunity, less tolerance for cold, reduced fertility and poor physical reserves in the face of a serious injury, illness or major surgery. They are at increased risk of side effects from even common things that are normally distributed to the fat tissue such as vitamins A or D and moxidectin.

December 2018 - Mette Rosencrantz Returns to San Diego
Written by CRM
Friday, 30 November 2018 00:31
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Accomplished dressage trainer brings her program to Arroyo Del Mar.

When Mette Rosencrantz got the call from Steffen Peters about the opportunity to relocate her business from Los Angeles back to San Diego’s beautiful Arroyo Del Mar, she
didn’t hesitate to make the change. She has been working at Equinox Equestrian Center owned by Karen Izzi-Bristing but she needed more room for her expanding business.

She came to work at Helena Polanitza’s Seabreeze in San Diego in the early 80s and getting to move back to San Diego will be like coming home. Arroyo Del Mar is the home base for Steffen and Shannon Peters training business and they also are the management team for the elite 22-acre dressage training facility that is home to several dressage trainers.

December 2018 - LEGIS League
Written by by Brooke Goddard
Thursday, 29 November 2018 23:49
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LEGIS League is a fun and welcoming awards program for all levels.

by Brooke Goddard

In 2014, Marnye Langer and the team at launched LEGIS League as a fun awards program for hunter, jumper and equitation riders that welcomed a variety of competitors from entry-level through 1.10m jumpers. This year, the USHJA Affiliate program gained bolstered support, expanding to add Starr Vaughn, Leone Equestrian, and C&C Horse Shows to the docket and launching a LEGIS League Dressage program.

December 2018 - UC Davis Dressage
Written by by Katie Mednick
Thursday, 29 November 2018 23:40
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Student team is off to a good start.

by Katie Mednick

UC Davis’ first two Intercollegiate Dressage Association shows of the season went smoothly at Cal Poly San Louis Obispo’s newly renovated facility on the weekend of Nov. 3-4.

Like other collegiate equestrian leagues, athletes competing in IDA shows have 10 minutes to warm up a randomly-assigned host team’s horse before entering the court to complete a test.

December 2018 - Tri-Valley Horse Show Association
Written by photos: Kristin Lee Photography
Thursday, 29 November 2018 01:47
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End of an era for longtime Los Angeles area organization.

photos: Kristin Lee Photography

After many, many years in the Southern California hunter/jumper market, the Tri-Valley Horse Show Association staged its final Championship Show & Medal Finals Nov. 3-4 at the Camelot Riding Club in Newhall and it will cease operation as of 2019.


December 2018 - Editor’s Notes
Written by CRM
Friday, 30 November 2018 19:11
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My Christmas wish is that we all continue contributing what we can to those struggling in the aftermath of November’s cruel fires: evaluating what we truly need against what we can give to those with more pressing needs. This issue’s articles detail our equestrian community’s renowned courage and generosity in the worst times. As we went to press just before Thanksgiving, the fires were out for the moment but the need for help will extend for months and years.

December 2018 - How To Help
Written by CRM
Friday, 30 November 2018 19:08
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Once again, wildfires spark equestrian community’s remarkable generosity.

Myriad efforts to help equine and human fire victims exist throughout the state and beyond. Individuals have started GoFundMe pages, equipment drives and other efforts for specific barns or people. Tack and feed stores throughout the state welcome donations that can be put toward helping horse owning fire victims with whatever supplies they most need. Those caring for evacuated horses concur that monetary donations are the best way for out-of-area horse people and the general public to help.

December 2018 - Gift Buyers Guide
Written by CRM
Friday, 30 November 2018 18:50
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Help is the greatest gift of all!

The Gift of Help

After November’s wildfires, California has a sickening amount of people and horses in need of help as they attempt to rebuild their lives. Our equestrian community is famously generous in these all-too common situations, but often donations dwindle even though the needs continue for months, years and sometimes lifetimes.

December 2018 - Gaining The Edge in NCEA Recruiting
Written by by Alex Riley
Friday, 30 November 2018 02:19
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Collegiate equestrians share three tips for standing out in a competitive field of candidates.

by Alex Riley

The path to a spot on a National Collegiate Equestrian Association level program’s roster is different for every rider. Two things are constant in the recruiting process – many athletes are trying to reach the sport’s highest collegiate level and space is extremely limited.

NCEA equestrian programs have a maximum of 15 scholarships at their disposal, but some carry more than 60 athletes at a time. Most riders do not receive a full-ride athletic scholarship, instead using a combination of athletic, academic and personal money to cover the costs related to school. In fact, some riders do not receive any athletic financial aid at all, joining a program as a walk-on, but they still receive the same benefits.

December 2018 - Benjamin Heckman
Written by CRM
Friday, 30 November 2018 02:06
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Adrenaline rush snags a mainstream sports guy’s interest in pursuing an equestrian path.

Benjamin Heckman is a sports crazy 16-year-old. The Northern Californian is a Warriors fanatic with a head full of basketball stats and stories. After a cross-country jumping experience at Eventful Acres this past spring, he’s also a fanatic about eventing. Benjamin had plenty of fun in his first three years of regular riding, but admits it would be a “bit cooler” if he weren’t virtually the only young guy doing it.

Maggie Clancy’s Strides Riding Academy in Petaluma is the main source of Benjamin’s horsemanship foundation so far. There, he started on a hunter/jumper track and enjoyed being a member of the barn’s Interscholastic Equestrian Association team along with 11 girls. Since the eventing camp, he’s switched full-time to that discipline and now has his own new horse. Benjamin followed his mother Alice Chan’s footsteps into the horse world, and is off and galloping through it with her full support.

December 2018 - It Worked!
Written by article & photos: Kim F. Miller
Friday, 30 November 2018 00:41
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Las Vegas National & the AON/USHJA National Championships

article & photos: Kim F. Miller

An idea hatched about four years ago came to fruition in Las Vegas Nov. 14-18, as the inaugural AON/USHJA National Championships hitched its wagon to the Las Vegas National Horse Show, now a fixture on the West Coast circuit thanks to the great stewardship of organizers Blenheim EquiSports.


December 2018 - Horses – The Ultimate Healers
Written by CRM
Friday, 30 November 2018 00:26
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Cornerstone Therapeutic Riding Center’s Operation Saddle Up Changes People’s Lives

Mike, a retired Army Major and Green Beret, had his life drastically change when he was injured while saving a fellow soldier during a parachute training exercise. His chute tangled during the rescue which caused him to fall 400 feet to what should have been his death. A son of a minister, he asked God to save him and miraculously he survived.

Catastrophically injured, he was “given a mountain of prescription drugs” which led to addiction. When his dad confronted him about his addiction, which was causing anger, depression, and hopelessness, Mike knew he needed to get help. A doctor referred him to Operation Saddle Up, a project of Cornerstone Therapeutic Riding Center in San Diego County’s Ramona, where his road to recovery really began.

December 2018 - Sylvia Zerbini Clinic
Written by by Linda Holst
Thursday, 29 November 2018 23:44
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Cavalia Odysseo star shares liberty work strategies with everyday horse owners.

by Linda Holst

There is a distinct romance that is displayed by Cavalia’s Odysseo star Sylvia Zerbini and her “equine guys” (16 striking Arabian stallions and geldings), during their Grand Liberte performances throughout North America, Europe and Australia. Each horse performs their part of the synchronized dance in proper sequence at liberty, coordinating their movements with the other horses under Sylvia’s ballet like direction. Everyone who sees her is mesmerized as she moves with the posture of a dancer and years of finely tuned skills that have been mastered to create this beautiful equine orchestra.

December 2018 - Farewell Clarinius
Written by CRM
Thursday, 29 November 2018 23:18
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Flying Changes welcomes your submissions. Please tell us about what’s happening in your life and/or at your barn: births, deaths, engagements, job changes, new hires, marriages, new management and barn moves. Send your reports to Kim F. Miller at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . Photos welcome!

December 2018 - Ann Dreams of France. Installment #5
Written by by Joell Dunlap - all rights reserved by the author 2018
Thursday, 29 November 2018 01:21
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by Joell Dunlap - all rights reserved by the author 2018

Ann kept a bag of clothes in the barn office for occasions like these. She called Peter and got his answering machine on her way to the showers.

“Hey Peter, I’m just calling to check on Luke. I’m stuck here at the races and so I need to leave him with you all day. I’ll be back around 6 o’clock tonight and I’ll bring you some soup from the deli. Call me if you need anything and pet Luke for me. I hope you are feeling better and no, I didn’t forget your doctor’s appointment for tomorrow.”

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