RDA NI Region Autumn 2016

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As the groups settle new riders in, RDANI takes the opportunity to train up volunteers before the busy spring/summer term. The organisation values the contribution that volunteers make so much and like to make sure they are well looked after.

The autumn training season kicked-off this year with a very exciting day learning about equestrian vaulting which took place at Laurel View Equestrian Centre on 12th October.

The coaches were Margaret Morgan MBE and Rebecca Hewitt from North Berwickshire Group, who kindly travelled over from Scotland to do this training for the RDA coaches and volunteers. They took everyone through all the stages necessary to become an RDA vaulting group, initially using a barrel before going “live” with Johnny, a very well-schooled horse provided by Laurel View. Most of the brave coaches had a go and were amazed at what could be achieved in a short time with good tuition.

Many thanks to Margaret and Rebecca for sharing their expertise and also to Laurel Falloona and her staff at Laurel View for all their help.

A busy November started with proficiency test examiner training hosted by Omagh group.

Regional coach Caroline Twemlow was the trainer and as always took great care to explain to the examiners exactly how the new syllabus and scoring system worked so that standards will be maintained.

Thanks go to all who attended on a horrible wet and stormy evening.

A similar session was held at Laurel View on November 22 hosted by Antrim group and thanks go to them for all their help and to the riders who attended both sessions and went home with rosettes and certificates as a reward for their achievements.

On November 14 over 60 RDA coaches from the region were joined by some RDA Ireland coaches at Longstone RDA in Armagh for an excellent training Day with Sue Adams Wheeler FRDA and Lynne Munro, regional physiotherapist, who travelled from England.

Many thanks to them and to Ruth Parker from RDA UK for organising and also to Longstone and Omagh RDA groups for providing riders and horses for the practical sessions. All in attendance learnt a huge amount from these coaches and hopefully the experience will benefit riders right across the Region.

Finally, thanks go to Coleraine group and Jane McFarlane for hosting an excellent equine welfare training session on Saturday, November 19. This was an excellent interactive session covering lots of topics including travelling, tack fitting, health indicators, feeding, rugs and more.

To get involved with the work of RDANI contact rdaniregion@yahoo.co.uk or to visit the website at www.ridingforthedisabledni.org.uk.