Three USEF/USPEA National Para-Equestrian Dressage COEs Complete Series of Clinics

By on January 14, 2017

Thousand Oaks, California – January 11, 2017 – USEF/USPEA National Para-Equestrian Dressage Centers of Excellence (COE) Carlisle Academy Integrative Equine Therapy & Sports in Lyman, Maine; North Texas Equestrian Center (NTEC) in Wylie, Texas; and Ride On Therapeutic Riding Center in Chatsworth, Calif.; each completed a COE clinic this fall/winter season.

Carlisle Academy Integrative Equine Therapy & Sports
Lyman, Maine
October 21-22 and November 18, 2016

Carlisle Academy Integrative Equine Therapy and Sports recently conducted two Para-Equestrian clinics for para-driving and para-dressage. The clinics ran over two weekends and took place in Lyman, Maine on October 21-22 and November 18, 2016. The clinics, conducted by international para-equestrian coaches Clive Milkins and Scott Monroe, are part of Carlisle Academy’s ongoing efforts as a USEF/USPEA Para-Dressage Center of Excellence.

On October 21 & 22, 2016, five developing riders, including Carlisle’s own para-equestrian youth and disabled veterans, in addition to two adult riders from Virginia, and a PATH coach from New York took part in curriculum-rich para-dressage training with esteemed Paralympic Coach Clive Milkins. Participants gained new coaching networks, adaptive equipment ideas, and the fundamentals of para-dressage competition, but also received thought-provoking and empowering lessons to dive deeper into the sport.

On November 18, 2016, American Diving Society Judge and International Para-Driving Coach Scott Monroe offered an Introduction to Para-Driving. Participants from neighboring Maine riding centers included three PATH coaches, three veterans, several auditors, and one adult driver with a disability interested in the competitive sport experience. Monroe presented the foundations of para-driving while sharing his recent experience coaching international athlete Stefanie Putnum at the 2016 World Championship. Introductory lessons were given to those who were interested.

In both clinics, Carlisle’s Head of School Sarah Armentrout shared information on veterans’ funding assistance through the Department of Veterans Affairs, encouraging eligible veteran athletes to learn more about and engage in para-equestrian sports.

For more info on the Para-Equestrian Training Camps, contact Carlisle Academy Head of School, Sarah Armentrout at 207-985-0374, sarmentrout@carlisleacademymaine.com, or visit carlisleacademymaine.com.

Carlisle Academy is a recognized PATH Premier Accredited Center and a USEF/USPEA Para-Equestrian Center of Excellence.

North Texas Equestrian Center (NTEC)
Wylie, Texas
December 2-4, 2016

North Texas Equestrian Center (NTEC) of Excellence in Wylie, Texas held its first para-dressage trainer and rider forum December 2-4, 2016. This was a brand new format for the trainer and riding forum where the successful Danish Olympic coach David Amager gave a rider clinic and theory seminar after the clinics and Kai Handt USEF National Para-Dressage Advisor and Chef d’Equipe gave a Para-Dressage coach seminar. The clinic was exceptionally well received. The very intense course attracted lots of spectators, went from 8 AM to 8 PM each day, and involved not only horse and rider training but theory sessions about how to train, prepare, and show horses in national and international competition. The trainer seminar gave in-depth information about how to school and train para-equestrian athletes and horses for competition and how to correctly evaluate riders and their mounts for safety and competition.  Representatives from USEF, USOC, and USPEA were impressed with the high level of competition and excellent facilities.

USEF National Para-Dressage Advisor and Chef d’Equipe stated, “Thanks to the United States Olympic Committee for the grant to put on the first coaching forum. The seminar was an excellent combination of having a US and top rated European coach working hand-in-hand to give our riders and especially our trainers in-depth information on how to train and prepare horse/rider pairs for competition and how to evaluate upcoming or new talent for further training for competitions. The participation of local trainers as well as a few trainers from other parts of the country show that there is a large interest in seminars of this caliber and form.  We had excellent feedback on the theory, video, and printed material from athletes, trainers, and support staff. NTEC is looking forward to running multiple seminars of this caliber with international trainers and judges in 2017 and beyond.”

He added, “Just thank USOC for the Grant to put on the first coaching forum.”

Rider Katie Jackson added, “The clinic was a great experience. Everyone rode really well and showed significant improvements over the three days of riding. For me, this was my first dressage clinic since becoming a para-dressage rider.  David was spot on with his observations and gave me some really great tools to continue working with. The horse I rode, Wembley, worked hard for me all weekend and I enjoyed feeling the improvements in our connection and overall relaxation that David helped us achieve.  I really enjoyed meeting some new para-dressage riders and getting to know others better too. We had a very supportive and enthusiastic group. The NTEC family and Kai Handt did a wonderful job of organizing and hosting our weekend of learning and spoiled us with all kinds of delicious food.  Thanks to NTEC, USPEA, and USEF for making this symposium possible. I am already looking forward to the next one.”

For more information about the North Texas Equestrian Center clinic, please contact Kai Handt at Kaihandt@yahoo.com and visit uswarmblood.com. Office phone number: (972) 442-7544.

Ride On Therapeutic Riding Center in Chatsworth, Calif.

Ride On Therapeutic Riding Center in Chatsworth, California hosted a clinic with David Schmutz. The clinic was unfortunately cancelled after three rides due to 40 mile per hour winds.

Megan McQueeney expressed, “We couldn’t even keep the arena standing. Despite 40 plus mile an hour winds both David and the riders were extremely hearty. We managed to get in three rides before we had to cancel. Joann Benjamin also did a national classification for one rider. It was incredibly generous of Dave to offer his time to develop these riders and everyone had a great time and learned a lot despite the weather.”

She added, “We have been very pleased with the para-dressage interest we have received over the year. We hosted an Open House Clinic and Classification last fall and that event was great. Riders from all over California came including five riders that did five classifications.”

Ride On Therapeutic Riding Center in Chatsworth, Calif. will host another clinic February 5, 2017 with David Schmutz. There will also be a nationally recognized Para-Dressage show at the Los Angeles Equestrian Center May 13-14, 2017. For more information, contact Megan McQueeney at jrsporthorses@gmail.com

USEF/USPEA National Para-Equestrian Dressage Centers of Excellence (COE)

The regional COE hubs of excellence goal are to attract new riders to the sport of para-equestrian dressage. Additionally, they work in partnership with the USEF high performance programs to develop athletes to a level where they can represent the U.S. in international competition and at the Paralympic Games and ultimately win medals.

COEs play a vital role in attracting dressage trainers to the sport and helping them understand the aids and methods of training the disabled athletes in para-dressage. The COEs are the primary hosts of USEF para-dressage high performance programs and educational symposiums. In addition, COEs aim to further develop their links with the therapeutic riding community, thus exposing interested athletes to competition opportunities.

Each COE is unique in the structure of their para-dressage programs and offer opportunities independent of other COEs. The USEF/USPEA is committed to working with each COE to build plans that complement their individual strengths and opportunities. These regional hubs of excellence will attract new riders to the sport of para-equestrian dressage. Additionally, they work in partnership with the USEF high performance programs to develop athletes to a level where they can represent the U.S. in international competition and at the Paralympic Games and ultimately win medals.

For more information on the COE programs, please contact USEF Director of Para Equestrian, Laureen Johnson at lkjohnson@usef.org, or 908-326-1155.

The USPEA is the USEF’s Recognized Affiliate for all para-equestrian disciplines and exists to help develop, promote, and support athletes wishing to participate in the para-equestrian sport. For more information on getting started with para-equestrian, please visit www.uspea.org or contact USPEA President, Hope Hand at wheeler966@aol.com.

For more information about the USEF/USPEA Centers of Excellence, please visit USEF.org or go to http://uspea.org/may-5-2016-usefuspea-names-para-equestrian-dressage-centers-of-excellence/.

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