Becky Holden – Dressage Rider and Trainer
Becky is a classical trainer who strives to help the everyday rider. She believes in a systematic approach to schooling to help build harmony and understanding without the use of modern day gadgets. For the past 30 years she has lived and breathed horses and has absorbed all the knowledge she can to become a better horse trainer and riding instructor. This began at Asoka stud where she was able to ride highly schooled horses at a very young age. She would sit hour after hour watching Sue Rosenthal train the horses and Becky was in awe of her ability which opened up her passion to learn. In her early 20’s Becky became the main trainer at Asoka with 17 stallions and a large herd of mares and youngsters to work with. In 2005 Becky was approached by Heather Moffett and she moved down to Devon. Heather helped Becky progress with her riding but also recognised her talent for working the horse in-hand and in the long reins. Heather promoted Becky and allowed her to hold workshops and clinics using Heathers horses. Becky also became a level 4 Enlightened Equitation instructor. After a rigorous and demanding selection process Becky was more recently accepted to train with Philippe Karl (author of “twisted truths of modern dressage”) working towards becoming a recognised riding instructor of the ‘School of Légèreté’ (lightness). This an opportunity of a life time and has taken Becky to another level of learning! Becky is now based in Manchester and holds regular clinics across the UK. It is great to work with Becky and her clients because she is on such a similar wavelength in regards to the welfare of the horse. Becky rides both her horses in a Schleese HK and is truly a great ambassador for ESF!
“Like most riders I have gone through many saddles striving for the perfect fit, some have been ok for the horse but not for me and vice versa. I have also taught people whose saddle hinders their position and sits them out of balance, which then obviously hinders the horse. I have known Laura for a number of years and she is a perfectionist if ever I’ve met one! When I found out she was going to Canada to train with Jochen Schleese and Saddlefit 4 Life I waited with baited breath to find out what wasn’t perfect! Laura came home raving about these saddles so I needed to find out more. I could not believe the difference these saddles made. My mare’s gaits changed instantly and she was effortless to ride. I was in balance and she could move underneath me. I’ve watched numerous fittings now and every single one has shocked me (for the better of course!). Horses which previously couldn’t canter in their made to measure saddles now could, horses which were very spooky in the school completely STOPPED spooking. Riders who struggled with their leg positions and often had back pain and sore hips found they had still legs which hung effortlessly in their new saddle and previous pain was no longer there. Both my horses are now fitted with a Schleese saddle and the difference they are making is truly amazing. What fills me with the most confidence is how these saddles won’t need replacing; as my horses develop their training and change shape so will my saddles. This feeling is honestly priceless.” Becky Holden
Sophie Bennett – Dressage Rider and Trainer
Sophie is a BD Trainer based in the Channel Island of Guernsey. Sophie has competed up to Inter I level at the Nationals and trains riders and horses full time. After winning a BD scholarship in the 90’s, and growing success at the higher levels, circumstances forced 10 years out of the sport. However, dressage is a bug that never leaves and by 2006 she was training for extended periods in Germany with Olympic rider Leonie Bramall. Various young horses have followed with qualifications to regional finals etc, but now she has a longer term ride on her own gelding Sunny Boy. “Sunny” took Sophie to the Hickstead Masters last year and to the Pet Plan finals in 2012. Sunny is now just starting to compete at Medium level and Sophie hopes the foundations are already laid for advanced level. Sophie and Sunny train and compete in a Schleese HK saddle. We wish them the best of luck for their future and are happy to be an ongoing part of their journey!
“I have a passion for helping riders with their position and posture. After 10 years out of the saddle myself I really had a new appreciation of what it takes to ride well when you have spent an extended period driving a computer. I needed all the help I could get to recover my seat! After seeing the Schleese videos online, I had to try one for myself, and I knew various horses with a history of saddle issues, and riders that were struggling more that I thought they should be. I could not believe the difference when I rode in a saddle that fitted me. I generally ‘just get on with it’ in any saddle. I was really surprised at the effortless change for the better in my own position. And the difference in my horse was remarkable. Problems that I had thought were training or pilot error issues were clearly saddle issues. They must have been, as some of the lateral suppleness issues we had been having literally disappeared overnight. We haven’t looked back and his training and physical development go from strength to strength. I have clients that are having the same positive experience” Sophie Bennett
See Sophie’s website for her news and updates including her journey with ESF! www.guernseydressage.com
For Schleese saddle testimonials see here