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  • Writer's picturemarida5

January 2024

Sorry it’s been a while since I have updated you all. I am going to try and make sure that every month I write a blog to keep you updated with everything that I have been doing including all of my World Class activity.

I had a lovely Christmas and New Year spent with all my family; my sister and niece were over from America which was lovely. I hope you all did too.

My big news and if you follow me on social media you will already know that I am very excited to say that as of the 1st January I have joined the World Class Programme at podium potential level. I cannot thank everyone that has helped me to get to this point enough. It’s been great to return to my second home Bisham. I now have my eyes firmly on working towards getting selected for the 2024 Paralympics.

I was invited to attend the World Class Media day at the Equestrian House in Warwickshire; its an amazing building and very accessible. Me and dad had a great day and learnt lots. We had several talks and the chance to meet lots of new people and practise our communication skills. One of the many talks that I found very interesting was the talk about Environmental Sustainability. It so important to look after the environment; I always use my reusable water bottle. I also recycle bedding bags back to my sponsor Sorbeo (find out more on this link I am doing my bit to help the planet are you!? We also had a chance to speak in front of the camera and to practise our interview techniques this is something I really enjoy and I got lots of positive feedback.

We also had our first yard visit with World Class at South Bucks. This went well, and everyone was pleased with all our progress since Hartpury. Athene’s way of going is much improved and we have worked hard over the winter on this! I am excited to get back inside the white boards with her soon; but first we have squad training next month. I really enjoy riding Athene and she loves her dancing.

Damo has come into the new year very relaxed and here’s hoping its going to stay! He has massively come on in terms of his confidence and dealing with things out of his/our control and his work effort is amazing. The goal for this year is to get Damo to do the required movements and relax and then everyone will see how special he is! I keep telling him he just needs to show off but he seems to think he needs to show off his fancy party tricks not his wonderful walk.

Bear is doing well after having an operation at the Royal Veterinary College before Christmas and is loving being back out in the field. Bear is such a lovely horse and here’s hoping he has some luck sent his way for the year ahead. He was thoroughly spoilt and a huge thank you to Dave, his team and everyone that looked after him. It was great to catch up with Bettina too.

Every Friday I go to Bisham and have a Physio session with Caryl and a Strength and Conditioning session with Neil. Its all going really well, and I am definitely getting stronger and fitter. Being able to cope with the horse’s movements better and sitting up which has always been a challenge for me! On that note I am upping my cardio work this year and the Chiltern Leisure Centre where I train and am supported through the Everyone Active Sporting Champions scheme have got a Ski erg so I have been using this and the Handbike.

I offered an opportunity to join my team as a mentee; I had so many great applications it was a hard choice choosing my two new team members. A huge, big welcome to Nicola and Squid and Fliss and Seran. We have our first group zoom next month and are all looking forward to this.

Damo had his monthly sports massage from Lee which as you can see from the photo he thoroughly enjoyed himself. I felt so much better after mine. I then attended Performance Hertfordshire and had a great session with Fiona.

This month the horses had a delivery from Betta Life and are now all topped up on PharmaQuin and PharmaTrac.

To end the month, me and mum headed off to an off-horse camp at Bisham. It was a super fascinating two days, and I learnt lots. I had my profiling which showed that my hard work has defiantly paid off as two of the tests I have never been able to do I actually managed to do them; so that’s a big achievement! We stayed the night at Bisham the rooms were nice and super accessible. I had Physio, strength and conditioning sessions, psychology and we also had some yoga as well as team building.

That’s it for this month; next month looks busy with competitions restarting, squad training, mentee catch up and so much more!





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