Monday, February 28, 2011

Horse world expo

I'm back! I spent the last few days at Horse World Expo and had a blast! I watched clinics and presentations by Colleen Kelly, Jane Savoie, Tommy Turvey, Guy McLean, Nick Karazissis and Liz Graves. I shopped my heart out and bought a new helmet, trimming apron, trail reins, and lots of food that was completely bad for me.

Guy McLean, have you heard of this guy? Well I hadn't. In case you have no clue who this guy is I'm doing you a favor with this video:

This guy was amazing! For one thing he has the most incredible horse named Spinabbey that can canter in place, and not just canter in place- he can do one-tempis in place! And he can canter backwards! Seriously astounding little horse! Yes, that's a lot of exclamation points but that little horse deserves them.

I also had no idea who Colleen Kelly was, but I attended one of her lectures and was really impressed. She's a dressage instructor who really emphasizes biomechanics- she had a great demo where she showed how she could unseat a rider with one finger. Fortunately she then showed how to create a more stable position. I wish I could link to her website but it seems to be down.

I watched a trimming demo done by the folks from the Institute of Applied Equine Podiatry.  This school was started by an ex-farrier who started learning about hoof function and came to the realization that with the knowledge he had gained he couldn't put shoes on horses anymore. They do clinics all over the world that are reasonably priced. Unfortunately his trimming method is based on the farrier hold, since my horses HATE that I won't be attending any of his clinics, but if your horses don't mind it this school could be a good resource for you.

I have to relate a story to you: have you heard about the Equisense EQ Enhanced Tack? The model horse wearing tack fitted with sensors to analyze your riding position? It was there so I decided to sign up and get an analysis. When I showed up at my time slot, Colleen Kelly showed up for a last endorsement shoot, so I was informed that I was being bumped. But then they decided that first they were going to interview her in front of the "horse" and they wanted there to be a lesson in the background- so I was ushered on. It was a very interesting experience; I highly recommend it. Anyway, when my lesson was finished they asked me if I'd do an interview on what I thought of the experience. While I was talking Jane Savoie sidled up next to the interviewer and listened in. I mentioned how the analysis showed how my hands weren't even and I was able to understand why Coriander wasn't comfortable with my contact. At this point Jane entered the interview and said how great it was that I found that out since correct contact is one of the hardest things to learn. Then she shook my hand! What a moment!


  1. Wow! It sounds like you had a great experience! Tons of stuff to take in, learn, and then your interview--too cool!! :)

  2. That's amazing! I don't know what else to say other than the envy factor is through the roof lol. What a neat series of experiences.

  3. Wow! How exciting! Did you get a picture with Jane?? Sounds like the expo was not only informative, but also a blast.

  4. Awesome! I'm going to the local expo in a couple weeks, hopefully it'll be just as fun as yours sounds!

  5. Super cool! I also am envious, but happy for you as well ;)

  6. Thanks everyone, it was like the universe converged on me for one brief, shining moment. If you see an interview with Colleen Kelly and there's a blond chick wearing a blue shirt in the background trying desperately not to look like a fool on camera- then wave, cause that's me.

    Sorry Wolfie, no photo :(

    And TBA- you will have a great time. Make sure to sign up early for the seat analysis if it's there. Time slots fill up quick.

  7. Sounds like you had a great time. The guy in the video is awesome so is that horse. I presume it is the one you're talking about.

    I'm thinking if you're going to get that kind of exposure for yourself at horse expos you need to be wearing a shirt with smazourek on it for all your bloggings to see. LOL

  8. How exciting that you got to do an interview. You must feel good about that. I'll keep my eyes open for it.

    The horse Spinabbey is wonderful. What a very well trained horse. I just wonder why it was necessary to have them step sideways over the horse on the ground or go through the fires. When I see stuff like that I can't help but think it's all theatrics to sell their products and I think it should come with a warning, "don't try this at home". Not trying to be snarky but I think it's more important to train a horse realistically.

    Glad you had a great time at the expo and saw lots of interesting things.

  9. LOL, good idea MiKael. I'll get started on those t-shirts ;)

    GHM- you are quite right. But I'll have to tell you what he said (paraphrased): he understands that he needs to get his name out there and prove what he has something worth teaching before he can be respected. Unfortunately fanfare is the best way to do it, especially in the US.

    I'll give it to him though, he did say that at home his horses live on pasture in a herd 24/7 which gave him quite a boost in my eyes, plus they were all barefoot (which I also liked).

  10. wow, what a great experience! good for you :-) i miss going to events where i actually learn something useful (though i would have chickened out if i was going to be interviewed on camera ;-)