Dressage Rider Training Reviews

Read these dressage rider fitness program reviews and testimonials below. These are from riders just like you who have completed the program and then sent me these photos and comments.

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Andrea Stuhec-Leonard – Ontario, Canada

Hi Nicola, DRT2 was everything I had hoped for and more. I really enjoyed DRT1 but wasn’t sure where it would go from there. You continue to motivate and inspire me to continue on my fitness journey through these easy to follow, small time commitment and very focused workouts.

I am always happily surprised with the progress I have made since the beginning of these programs. While I do not have a horse to ride at the moment I notice my increased strength and flexibility in everything I do, especially farm chores and training my baby horses. I am now registered for DRT3 and can’t wait to see what you have in store for us in this next program!

I have attached a picture of my two baby horses. They may not know it but my commitment to your DRT programs is for their benefit, in the hopes that once we start riding we’re all in the best shape possible.

Vanessa Way – Taranaki, New Zealand

Having just completed the DRT 3 program I am just blown away by my personal strength and flexibility since joining up to this program.
It has totally improved my effectiveness and also posture while riding . My competition results have also raised as a result of my new found fitness. Thank you so much for this incredible program- I am addicted for life.

Elke Breves – Germany

Dear Nicola and Ben, I enjoyed every minute of the DRT programs, but DRT 3 is something else. All the skills and improvements I gained through DRT 1+2 were transformed to a great magical sensation in DRT 3. Not only my body is so much stronger and balanced now, but my “new” mindset and confidence helped me get over my worries and anxieties regarding my young hot mare. The independent seat is not a mystery anymore and I am relaxed and happy every time I hop in the saddle. DRT definitely changed my life for the better, not only with my horses but in every aspect of my daily life. Now I am looking forward to DRT 4 :).Thank you so much for your wonderful programs, your efforts, support and love you put in them!

Annemarie Yoder – Pennsylvania, USA

Nicola, Wanted to write you a note about our first schooling show. This was my first time showing this horse I imported from the Czech Republic and spent all winter learning to ride this schoolmaster. We got a 68% and 72% , 2 blue ribbons!! Our season is just starting and we are looking forward to having many fun rides together. Your help has been invaluable and a large part of the reason for our success. Many thanks,

Nicole Kildare – Tauranga, New Zealand

A truth that is not often spoken out loud is that fear of riding and being unfit and weak go hand in hand. I spent years and lots of money on horsemanship programs and lessons to make my horses ‘safe’ as an adult beginner rider who was literally scared stuff and came off with the slightest spook. DRT1 and DRT2 have not only given me my childhood dream of doing ACTUAL dressage but my general riding is so much fun, and when my horse has a moment I laugh it off instead of wanting to dissolve into tears. DRT has given me the strength and stability needed to give me joy in riding. I’ve managed the programs at my own pace and with so much support I’ve managed to put it down and pick it up again with multiple abdominal surgeries. It has in fact been hugely beneficial in my recoveries. Thank you from the bottom of my heart Nicola and Ben for all you’ve given to these programs and your customers.

Penny Storr – Nottingham, UK

Hi Nicola, I have so enjoyed this course as it gave me something to aim for in very difficult times we are all living in. I have learnt a lot about how my body directly influences my sensitive horse… I have also noticed that the more I can relax and remain balanced directly impacts Scarlett’s paces. I finally got to travel over to my trainer, he noted how more supple and forward scarlett was. A much happier horse and rider ….Thank you. I am looking forward to starting DRT 2.

Cyndi Graham – Dunkineely, Ireland

Dear Nicola and Ben, I’ve just completed DRT3, Yay!
It has been a brilliant experience and I couldn’t recommend your programs highly enough to anyone who wants to unlock their own body’s potential to improve communication with the horses they ride.

For me, I found DRT1 changed and improved my core strength and range of motion. As they say, motion is lotion! DRT2 continued that journey and gradually I felt my flexibility improve because of the strength gained. Happy bunny!

DRT3 has been the icing on the cake! I feel it has taken me to a new level, it feels like all my “new and improved” bits have learned how to work together, and separately, properly. To be able to breathe with movement, allow the muscles that aren’t needed to relax, and activate others at the same time is becoming so much easier. Keep doing what you do, you guys are awesome! Thank you so much!

Sally Neihart

Hi Nicola. Just wanted to tell you how much I appreciate having been able to do drt1. Last fall when I thought about not being able to ride very much during the winter months I was afraid my balance and fitness which I had worked very hard on last summer would soon be lost. But because of being able to do drt1 I not only stayed fit and balanced I was able to improve! My first lesson this spring after drt1 my trainer commented on how much better my abs are working this year then they were last year. I would highly recommend this program to anyone who wants to improve their riding or simply wants to improve their posture and become more fit. I used to get a bad back pain when I tried other workouts but not with drt. Thank you for such a wonderful program!

Sally Neihart – Florida, USA

Nicola, thank you so much for bringing us the DRT series. I’ve just completed DRT3 ( a couple of weeks behind due to some vacation interference) and I’m already signed up to begin DRT4. I loved DRT3. I very much enjoyed the focus on fascia. I appreciated the education on how important it is and how it affects our riding. I could really feel the affects of the yoga routines that targeted the fascia. I feel stronger in my legs and in my upper back in particular. My riding instructor and lesson mates have noticed my increased strength.

I appreciate the addition to the beginning of each session of the list of exercises and the quick video cameo of what they look like. It helped me to gather the right toys for the workout and to understand what we would be doing.

This time around I also took some time to explore other resources in the Online Gym. I did some additional yoga and went through the nutrition course. I got some great ideas about eating healthier whole foods. I have also added the Primal Defense Probiotic and Collagen Protein into my nutrition routine. I really enjoyed having the yoga routines and DRT since I could not go to Yoga class due to the pandemic. I really enjoy doing exercises at home now.

I am 62 and retired. I’ve always loved horses (and yoga) but have never had to opportunity to have my own horse. Over the years I’ve taken sporadic lessons and done trail rides with friends on their horses a few times a year. Two years ago I had a bad fall from a friend’s horse and my confidence plummeted. I questioned if I should continue to ride at all. Thanks to the increased strength I’ve gotten from the DRT series and your encouraging words, I resolved this year to exercise more and have more time in the saddle. I’ve increased my lessons to twice a week and I’ve seen improvement in strength and skill and confidence. I feel better physically overall due to DRT and I am happier being able to pursue my lifelong dream of spending time with horses.

I’m really looking forward to the new adventures of DRT4. Thank you so much for all you do. I look forward to joining you and your critters for another round of improvement.

Anna Brockhurst – Cambridgeshire, UK

Hi Nicola, first competition for 25 years. On the same horse that only a few months ago I could almost cry with frustration and lost energy getting him to move forward, not to mention the months of feeling dread mixed with fear as I drove to the yard and my lesson.

Fast forward to my Novice unaffiliated two tests yesterday, achieving a 2nd and a 3rd!!

At the end of the day it wasn’t the horse’s fault… I can directly link this improvement to DRT1, all the homework, walking and now daily yoga with your 21 day challenge.

This time last year my 50 year old body hurt so much that I was feeling very low, wondering if this was it and from now on life just had to be slower. It’s taken the year, with DRT the last much needed push. Connecting exercise and the hobby you love is the most motivating experience.

Germana Zollesi – Orbassano, Italy

Dear Nicola, DRT2 is a very special program. It’s fun, challenging and always different. I really loved this program and my riding is more more enjoyable. DRT1 is beautiful, but DRT2 is also special. Thank you very much.

Magdalen – Florida, USA

Hi Nicola! DRT1 has been a Godsend, a real game changer for me! I have amazed myself doing this course. I now ride pain free – no more hip or knee pain! My wrists, which hurt like crazy at the start of the course – well, I can plank no problem now. I am physically stronger, more flexible, with increased balance, endurance and with noticeable muscle tone. In fact everything is better, especially my riding. The workouts were just hard enough, so that I was definitely challenged every time. I’m 63 and ride my cute, hot and tense PRE 5x a week. I actually thought that I was fit enough and that I was past the age of getting any result other than soreness from workouts – I was so wrong! Dressage is an incredibly challenging, rewarding journey, and DRT1 has made a major, positive impact not only on my riding but on my return to real fitness! Many thanks Nicola!!! With gratitude!

Mary Young – Brookline, USA

Hello Nicola!I was a few weeks behind, but I finished DRT2 this morning! I have been very happy with the program but was apprehensive about the second level at first. It turns out is was exactly what I needed and I was successful in completing it! It advanced my strength and confidence just to what I needed. This has improved the flatwork that I’ve been doing all winter in an indoor arena, as I feel much more balanced and have been softer with my hands when I stop and breath for relaxation on the horse. Thank you, and I will be repeating DRT2 for now to keep up with strength, core work, and balance! Thank you again!

Miquel Salva – Barcelona, Spain

Hi Nicola, thank you very much for your interest. Indeed I haven’t finished DRT1 since I decided to repeat phase 2. In any case, I can tell you that your proposal is excellent and is helping me a lot to improve my riding skills. I started horse riding very late, five years ago, when I was 52 years old. Age, in this case, makes thing more complex, and the proposed exercises have improved my sitting significantly; at least, this is what my instructor says!! I don’t own a horse but wanted to send you a picture of me on a horse that is the star of my riding school. His name is Lukas 510, and he won several TREC championships. Thank you again.

Charlotte Thomsen – Sønderborg, Denmark

Dear Nicola, Thank you so very much for the DRT1 program. I can honestly say that it is the best training program I have ever tried.
Here is why:
It is short, so you can manage to do it.
The level is good, not too difficult not too easy.
It is effective! You can feel the improvement week by week.
The homework is fun and challenges you in a new way.
The reading brings me good and useful knowledge… All together the program completes in a really great way.

I only ride 2-4 times a week because I don’t have my own horse right now, but I can still feel a major improvement on my riding. On top of all that you get a great supportive FB group with horse-people from all over the world. To me this is great value for money. I have just bought DRT2 and cannot wait to continue the journey. Here I am on my old horse when he was only 4 years old.

Kym Casterton – Auckland, New Zealand

Hi Nicole, I want to thank you so much for your fantastic programme! I have grown in strength and confidence, which I know my horse Janna has appreciated & it shows when I feel like we are moving together in harmony & balance. Still much work to do but on the right track. This photo is me with my young mare Janna at an event yesterday, having won champion combination. Having loads if fun too! Looking forward to the next stage.

Suzanne Dangela – Maple Ridge, BC, Canada.

Hi Nicola, I was part of the Covid winter/spring 2021 cohort of DRT1. I considered taking this program for some time and felt the winter months during Covid was the perfect opportunity. I really enjoyed the program and it definitely made me stronger and more body aware. You have three aspects to it; core fitness, yoga/flexibility, and rider strength. I definitely found the rider strength the most challenging. I feel like my overall fitness, balance and body awareness has improved considerably. I was lucky enough to continue with riding lessons during my participation in the program and really felt the benefit of both your fitness program and regular lessons. I appreciated having access to all the additional support material and information and hope to dig deeper into that now that I have finished the scheduled DRT1 program. Basically I was able to keep up with the weekly programs but due to my schedule I had to adjust the days and occasionally the weeks in which I could complete each set. I wrapped up and was able to balance on the ball with just a toe resting against the wall for extra balance. I loved your enthusiasm, connection back to riding , and very personalized video sessions. I especially like the one with your little dog doing the yoga beside you. I would definitely recommend your program to anyone who is serious about improving their riding. Cheers Suzanne

Susan Chamberlain – Virginia, USA

Nicola, I just finished the last riders’ strength workout of DRT3. A couple of weeks late since spring brings so much work outside that can’t wait. I can tell you that DRT3 is my favorite of all the DRT’s by far. I thoroughly enjoyed the Yoga/Mobility workouts of DRT 3 where I often dreaded the Yoga in DRT 1 & 2. All the work in DRT3 seemed to help loosen up joints and muscles as well as strengthen. I do feel more bounce in my step and all the core work has made barn chores easier.

Thank you so much for such great programs. I started DRT 1 at 59 and now at 61 having completed DRT 1, 2 & 3, I feel much more fit and flexible than I did at the beginning of this journey. Thank you again.

Marion Schmitz – North Carolina, USA

Hi Nicola! I recently retired from my career as a physical therapist after almost 30 years. Your program not only gave new variety to my existing workout routines, but the combination of core, yoga, and rider fitness sessions challenged my fitness with refreshing and effective techniques. And, did I mention it makes me smile!!

The information on diet, sleep and motivation have improved my energy and outlook. I look forward to continuing DRT to continue my journey towards better fitness and riding for myself and my horse!! Thank you for all of the guidance and fun!

Jan Sharp – Utah, USA

Just finished the DRT3 program this morning. A little behind due to skiing which ended yesterday for me and several all day riding clinics this spring in very cold spells. I am pleased how much stronger I am overall and how much my upper back strength has helped me have a straighter posture. The minute long sequences were harder at first but they were very aerobic. I bought the flash drives for all 3 levels so will continue to keep circulating thru them so I keep my core strength and posture up. Love the programs, your cheerful energy, your wonderful explanations on how everything applies to riding. I especially appreciate your emphasis on variations to fit ones physical limitations. Your program is very well done. Many thanks.

Selina Smith – Modbury, South Australia

Hi Nicola, I have a photo of me and Thai, finally! Here it is – the two of us after a very good lesson working in pairs doing drill work. I worked in my longer stirrup length which really highlighted how much we use our stirrups to support our seat a lot of the time. With the longer stirrup length I could feel my seat balancing and how I could support myself without my legs doing most of the work! Thanks again Nicola!

Regina Lang – Weimar, Germany

I love the way Nicola does the dressage riders training. It is challenging and friendly – the opposite of a humourless drill-sergeant-style. And her way helps me alot, I’ve got a better balance, more strength and mobility. Good for whole life not only for riding. Photo: My andalusian horse Unico and me during a coffee-Stop in Weimar, Germany.

Pauline Jaggs – Herefordshire, UK

Hi Nicola, Just to say how much I have enjoyed DRT 1. It gave me the structure and focus to maintain my fitness whilst without a horse to ride and definitely to improve my flexibility and balance. Being back riding now for a couple of weeks on a new horse, without any hint of stiffness after 3 months out of the saddle, and minimal loss of fitness, says a lot for DRT 1 (especially as I’m 65!). Difficult to assess the effect on my riding as this horse is quite different but time will tell, and I suspect DRT 2!
The only thing I really struggled with is kneeling on the Swiss ball without hands, complete failure so far!
Thanks so much for a fab course, really loved the Yoga especially. I’ll send you a photo but it is of me last autumn with the horse who was injured.
Kind regards
Pauline

Joanne Ducrot – Kaiapoi, New Zealand

Kia ora Nicola, My name is Jo and this is my big beautiful standardbred Missy (aka Marley- her new name) who I bought from the awesome charity Stable to Stirrup which reschools standardbreds to be reliable riding horses. Thank you so much for your fantastic programme Nicola. It has helped me gain strength, balance and confidence to get back to riding again. The programme is really doable; even when I ‘m busy. It is much easier to find time doing it at home and I feel like I am really doing my horse a favour by being more balanced which she really needs.

Narel Wilson – NSW, Australia

Hi Nicola, thank you so much for the program, I have found interestingly that DRT2 was a lot easier than DRT1 but see that as purely a reflection really of how far I have come since before starting DRT1 where I really had a lot not working too well back then (eg: basically very poor core strength and was very uneven through my body in strength and ability which is much improved now).

And in between the two programs I kept on going with quite a few of your other online gym programs as well – including 3 yoga programs, and the core work too that I alternated between yoga and core work. So I think that doing all of that in between the two DRT’s really put me in a good place to go on with, so needless to say I felt very proud of myself! I ended up doing DRT2 myself without Ella but will definitely continue on as have felt enormous benefits. Thank you SO much for everything, xx Narel

Annika Pohl – Linköping, Sweden

I am glad I started with DRT. I did DRT1 for more than 9 months. My way to sit on my two horses improved and I mastered most of the challenges in the program. Now I am on my second time of DRT2. I think I will do that at least 3 times…The yoga is the most difficult for me. I like the balance between different moves in the program and it is a good motivator to see what happens with the riding. This is my big Holsteiner Klas 21 years. I got him 4,5 years ago and he has learnt me a lot. Happiness on four legs!

Karen McManaway – South Carolina, USA

I am so grateful that I came across the DRT programs. When the lockdowns began I could no longer go to the gym and had to find a way to keep in shape. The DRT programs really changed my entire workout routine for the better. I have been in a rut for years doing the same exercises over and over. I am back at the gym now, but will continue to incorporate the DRT programs and Nicola’s yoga routines. I feel I have gone to another level of fitness and not only has it helped me to ride better, I look and feel better. I didn’t even realize how out of alignment and stiff I was until I began these programs. I just finished DRT 3, but will continue to do DRT 1, 2, and 3 over again. I plan on adding her mediation next to help calm my very active mind and hopefully it will help with the anxiety I have when competing. I work full time so I have to stay focused and structured. It is well worth it (although it really hurts sometimes).

Mairead O’Flynn – Cork, Ireland

Here is me and my wonderful 9 year old Irish sports horse Indie. I had been so focused on getting indie to start using his own body properly that I never really thought of the part I played in all on this. Insert DRT 1 and an eye opening experience that followed over the next 3 months!

I really enjoyed the DRT program, it was challenging (more so then I had expected) but as it was only 3 sessions a week for less then 20 min, I was able to convince my brain it was manageable, and it was not going to kill me.

I have definitely seen a massive improvement in my riding, my position, my balance and my ability to isolate movements. Our lateral work has never been this good and I’m really excited to see how I continue to progress.

Mascha – Switzerland

I always had troubles to sit straight in the saddle. My horse was somehow putting me in a crooked position. As time went on my body started to react and I was really in pain. My right side from the hip down was hurting a lot, I could not even sleep without taking some medicine. That was the time, when I remembered the advertising from the DRT on my Facebook site. So I thought – let’s give it a try…

And now, 3 months later I am without pain and I really felt an improvement. I know that I need to continue the workouts and it will always stay my weak spot. But that’s what’s riding all about… You never stop developing yourself being a better rider 😉

The program definitely helped me to make my body more strong and more flexible. But the most important thing for me was the weekly structure and the planning without being overwhelmed.

It’s not the case that I would have lack of sporting activity, thereof I have plenty. Only the explicit workouts and streching where missing… and that was conditioned by lack of motivation!

The workouts and the weekly program is designed that any of us can handle it – I rarely needed to motivate myself to practise them.

Well, the homework and the foaming roll was not my favorite thing but I compensated it a little with professional fascia massage. Now I’m already looking forward to the next program and to see more of the pleasant videos from Nicola.

Perle Deutsch – California, USA

I signed up for DRT after about a year of intensive lessons and R&A to improve my dressage riding. I felt frustrated that I seemed to improve very slowly although with a great trainer and cool horses. I really felt powerless with my progress somehow. I finally understood that in order to get better I needed to improve my seat and core strength and that the rest would follow. This is when I started the program. It immediately gave me a sense of control: I couldn’t practice on horses all day but I could do and repeat the workouts at will which was great. Nicola is great at explaining how the biomechanics of riding and training intersect and how to use our body to get the results we want, as well as how to have a great mindset and enjoying the journey. The workouts are very doable (especially, for me, as I worked through them twice during each week) and I really enjoyed watching the beautiful horse paddocks and backdrop.

What’s happened since week 1:
a. for the first time I really enjoy working out
b. my trainer seems happier with me and does not correct as much as she used to
c. I seem to be better able to apply what she tells me to do, i feel more in control of my horses and my body, as well as more confident
d. the horses I have the privilege to ride get on the bit faster and stay on it, have a better trot, canter and all moves are generally better
d. several people have commented that my seat is better and I seem to have improved a lot lately.

I can’t wait to do DRT 2 and 3 and get even stronger, fitter and more supple. I really recommend DRT to anyone who wants to fast forward their riding progress. It is a wonderful tool!

Lise Benoit – Quebec, Canada

My horse Manhattan appendix/friesian 7 years old. Thanks DRT program to help me with my balance and confidence.

Selina Smith – South Australia

Whether you are shooting for the stars for Grand Prix level or ride once a week in school horses like myself, DRT will be for you. DRT1 laid the foundation and DRT2 really gets into the strength and balance. I can’t wait to see what DRT3 will offer!”

Claire – The Netherlands

With my fulI-time working mum schedule, I felt grateful the past years, I could still fit daily training of my horse. After retiring him last summer, I had the luck to start a new adventure with a younger and promising mare. While we were getting to know each other, it became obvious I had to invest more time and efforts on my own body (rebalancing and relaxation). DRT really brought me what I was looking for : short work outs, easy to place in my schedule, a good variety of exercises and gradual increase in intensity. Also the link to riding makes it easy to realize which muscles are actually working when doing a specific movement on the horse. I really got addicted to the workouts routine and can’t wait to start the next session. I still can’t believe how my strength and suppleness improved in 12 weeks. Definitely I recommend this training to any rider who wants to get to the next level. (And definitely Nicola good mood and laughs are making the program extra nice to follow)

April Sarna – Oregon, USA

Hi Nicola, at 63 my husband said I was too old for dressage and he wanted me to quit. I was so fatigued after a lesson that I fell off trying to dismount at the halt and broke my wrist! Fortunately, I found your program and now my trainer is amazed and calling us superstars! Now I can ride for as long as I want. Thank you!!!

Charlotte Lawrence – Somerset, UK

Dear Nicola, your program has been wonderful, the yoga my particular favourite and it has certainly helped with my posture. When I started the program my aim was to ride my young horse but I have also treated myself to a 6 year Lusitano, so I have definitely got back into my riding with the help of your program. I have attached a picture of my on my KWPN four-year-old and of my Lusitano. Huge thanks for all your wonderful help.

Kim Brossoit – Michigan, USA

Hi Nicola, I love the program and worked my way through about week 6 and then got Covid, so had to lay off for awhile. With that said, I definitely felt myself getting stronger in my core, balance, and ability to use independent aids. I am 53 and just got back into horses a couple years ago. I owned 2 Arabians up until I went away to college and had to sell them. I am very grateful to have this opportunity again, but it has been a journey for sure in this older body. However, I did prove to myself that I can do it and have the energy and strength I need. So, I am going to restart the program again here shortly and get ready for show season! I will plan to join the online gym to do that… Here is picture of my Arabian gelding Dom and me, he just turned 6 and we are planning to show 1st level, maybe second level this year. Thank you so much, you are a very inspirational person

Rachael Howard – NSW, Australia

Hi Nicola, I’ve just finished DRT2 and am absolutely amazed at the strength in my body now and improvement to my riding. After an 18 year break from riding bringing up our children and running a busy horse farm breeding thoroughbreds, I was keen to get back eventing but had no core strength. Finding your program was the best thing I could have done, and I found your 20 minute workouts so easy to fit into my day. I am so hooked I’m back doing DRT2 again now and will certainly be interested in DRT3 if it happens. Photo attached of myself competing last weekend on my gorgeous boy MY COOKIE MONSTER. We came 5th and finished on our dressage score with clear rounds in showjumping and cross country. I just need to improve my dressage score now to get in the first 3. With lots more practice and fitness I’ll get there! Thanks you so much for all your great workouts. You’re an inspiration to us all and have done a great job putting this program together to help everyone’s fitness, riding and mindset!

Mary Douglas – New York, USA

Hi Nicola, Clyde and I thank you for guiding us to become better partners by helping me take better care of myself. Your program helps me stretch and work at being stronger by being more centered and balanced. Our journey with your program will continue as long as I am able to have the privilege of having horses in my life!

Mary Douglas (age 70)
Clyde (age 10)

Andrea Woods – NSW, Australia

Hi Nicola, After 12 weeks of this program, my fitness has made a great improvement. The bonus is how this has lifted my confidence. I am sitting the canter so much better now and in turn my horse is maintaining a relaxed canter for longer because I’m not in her way. Due to having to work in the city at the moment, I am living away from my horses for weeks at a time, coming back and riding better! Even my horse is impressed. It’s been an epiphany for me – rider fitness is an essential component to improving your partnership with your horse. Nicola is encouraging, natural and is spot on with this great program. Thank you! Can’t wait for DRT2! I will also be following up with Core 30 in the meantime.

Leah Sinclair – Southland, NZ

I bought a new young horse and am in my late 40s. I was an active rider but haven’t done much in the last ten years. I wanted to really do my best by my new horse and Nicola’s Dressage Rider Training Programme came up – I could do it at home. It was good that I didn’t see I could pause the programme in the first weeks as I got behind, the thought of wasting my money and that the programme would end was a wee incentive. I AM SO PLEASED I MADE THE TIME. The benefits are great I got myself sorted out and set up a regular time 20mins 3 times a week is easy for a big changes. I noticed a big difference in my seat stability particularly when I went from my dressage saddle to a jumping saddle. My legs are stronger and more stable, my rising trot is better, as well as my sitting trot. I feel I a helping my horse better with his balance (well probably I am not unbalancing him as much lol) Most of the exercises have options to help you. The yoga has been great, I didn’t realise I was so stiff in places and being more aware of my breathing helps when I’m riding too.I have completed the 12 weeks of DRT1 and looking forward to the next programme. In the meanwhile I am repeating DRT1. Many thanks to Nicola

Marion Bailey-Canham – Ottawa, Canada

Thanks Nicola – I speak so highly of all that you are doing and how the exercises I have been able to do has had a huge and awesomely positive impact on my riding and connection with Matteo!!

Julie Smith – Rossendale, UK

I was ready to stop riding because in my early 60s I felt I was losing strength, flexibility and reaction time. I didn’t feel safe and had a few falls after never falling off in 10 years. Your unique approach of addressing all of these areas has given me back my confidence and my 2 horses are improving massively. We all want a responsive, supple, strong and balanced horse- well hey guess what – they want the same in a rider! Many thanks and keep up the good work.

Belinda Brereton – Shropshire, UK

Hi Nicola, I have really enjoyed doing the DRT2 programme. Have to admit I’m not the best at doing the homework etc but the workouts are brilliant. I’m one of those that if you say “10 of these”, I’ll do 12 or just keep doing them whilst you’re talking!!! I hate running so didn’t keep that up for long, but then picked it up towards the end and couldn’t believe how fit I felt doing it. Now I will carry that on as the cardio fitness is what I lack for the big dressage tests.

Sara Reynard – Loughborough, UK

Hi Nicola, So this is me and my boy Benjamin out and about at the first comp since lock down, and since DRT. He is 13 years old and had since 4. We event at the lower levels but having ago at some BD dressage this spring. I feel stronger and much more aware of my posture and body. I am twisted from old injuries but through the programme helping me when my muscles get tight, and makes me feel good. I am mid way through wk 11 as repeated one week. I love the variety the program brings with something new all the time. We scored 5% more than when we previously rode the same test, yes a different judge, but do feel that we have improved…I will complete and repeat some of DRT 1 , and look forward to part 2!

Charlotte Stormer

I have truly enjoyed taking part in the DRT1 program. It has helped me to increase my core strength, hip mobility and to become straighter. Its also inspiring in a period where its not possible to train anywhere else but home due to Covid. I will for sure continue but will also repeat DRT1.

Fleta Sokal – Maryland, USA

DRT1 has increased my stamina and improved my posture and balance. My riding instructor has commented on it. It helps me help my horses in their balance. I feel great at almost 66 years old. Thank you Nicola

Ewa Deelman – Calabasas, USA

I really enjoyed both DRT1 and DRT2. I have been active and doing cardio classes, some yoga and barre work, but what I was really missing were exercises specific to horseback riding. I am not very patient, so doing a 1hr yoga class was a lot for me. With the DRT program, I get just what I need: enough yoga and strength to ride better. Also the core exercises helped me much more than the exercises I did in my cardio classes. Doing 20 mins 3 times per week is very manageable. Even when I did not feel like doing the program, I would think to myself that it is only 20 mins and then I will be done. I have to say that I was always very happy to have put in the effort. In the end I do feel stronger and more balanced when riding—thank you Nicola!”

Diane Gilmore – Washington, USA

Soon after I started DRT my instructor started commenting on how nice my horse moved. After that she started noticing how straight I was on turns. I am much stronger in the saddle. Roxy decided to throw a tantrum and not want to move forward because of some imaginary demon. After many circles and diving out my left leg (my weak leg after an injury), I stayed strong in the saddle with my heals down. I don’t think I would have been able to stay in the saddle had I not been doing the DRT workouts.

Annemarie Yoder – Pennsylvania

Nicola, The DRT program has benefited myself and my horse more than I could possibly have hoped for. I signed up on the advice of a friend because I bought a new horse that was a schoolmaster and we were having trouble communicating. He preferred a solid, well balanced seat and I was an older rider in not the best shape. The workouts are short but very effective and by 8 weeks I was realizing my riding was going to the next level. At 9 weeks I did my entire 30 minute lesson without stirrups. By 10 weeks we had mastered some very respectable tests and now preparing for our first show. I don’t think we would be where we are now without this program. I am fitter, healthier and my horse loves Nicola for making this happen! Many thanks!

Rie Nakamura – Iwate, Japan

Dear Nicola, Joining DRT1 had positive side effects. I now get up early and go to bed early. I’m not sure if Joey can tell any difference in my riding. But I feel that I can follow his big movements a bit better. Thank you again for your encouragement!

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