Gold Champion Filly
The Show HuB
Issue 11 - APRIL 2018
Al Faris International Horseback Archery Championships
est October 2014
Producer and content director
The Show Hub Founder and Director
Abby started the UAE Show Hub in October 2014, and it has been built from passion and dedication to the equestrian sport in the Middle East. Enhancing the sport and bringing it to the global audience is her end goal. Abby has ridden show ponies nationally as a young girl in England and trained at Advanced Medium Dressage level. She competed up to Foxhunter back in the UK and has performed for H.H Sheik Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum at the private opening ceremony of Meydan WC 2011 and at the Education for Borders conference at the Burj Khalifa. Her equestrian passion has been ingrained since birth.
6 - The Show Hub latest news
7 - Equitation Results for UAE
10 -13 ShowJumper - H.R.H Prince Mansour Al Saud
16 -17 - Sandie Robertson - Mind Coach
18 - 22 Al-Faris International Horseback Archery Championships
28 - 33 - AlHawajer Stud in Sharjah
36-39 - Line Moen - Dressage Arabians
40 - 42 The Al Marmoom Initiative
46-49 Gastric Ulcers with Dr Judith Maxwell MRCVS BVSc BSc (hons)
50 - 51 - Rider Nutrition
52 - 53 Jobs in the UAE
Welcome The Show Hub - Equestrian. The Middle East's first fully digital interactive equestrian magazine which shines a light on the community of Equestrianism in the UAE! We cover Show Jumping, Eventing, Dressage, Polo and Arabian Showing and larger events in Racing & Endurance. The Show Hub was created back in October 2014; born from a passion and dedication for the equestrian sports. We provide punctual information to those that seek it whilst providing information to the avid rider looking for competitions and family equestrian days out. We look forward to building on our experience over the years by adding other GCC countries and events to our coverage. The new website is due to be launched over the next couple of months www.uaeshowhub.com. We look forward to sharing the experiences we encounter on our journey to helping build and promote the equestrian sports in the region.
A huge thank you to our contributing writers in this months issue, Sandie Robertson - Mind Coach, Anne Haresign - Al Marmoon, The Equine Performance and Rehabilitation Center, Dr Judith Maxwell MRCVS BVSc BSc (hons). Credits to all that support and help with the content of this magazine.
Front Cover SH-HAB AL HAWAJER Image credit Nawaf Al Johani
The Show Hub's New Website
Show Hub News!!
The end of the season is upon us and it has been an absolute pleasure to shine a light on the successes of the UAE community and support the equestrian industry during this time. Our aim has always been to expand this support across the GCC and we are pleased to report we have recently taken the first exciting step. In partnership with Royal Show Jumper, H.R.H Prince Mansour Al Saud we would like to introduce to you The Show Hub KSA.
It is with my great pleasure that I bring to you The Show Hub KSA. Over the past year I have been fortunate in quietly observing the passion of The Show Hub and how they support the community of equestrianism in the United Arab Emirates. Saudi, my home, has so many talented riders; in Show Jumping a Silver Olympic Medallist, Gold-winning Arabians, Champion Endurance riders and many Young Riders driving up through the ranks and chasing goals, that my vision is to offer the same deserving support here.
The Show Hub KSA headed by myself, with the close help of Founder Abby Blom, aims to aid the supply of information about clinics, competitions, services, and products and ultimately help one another to reach their full potential.
This is a start of something different in our country. We recognise as a community we are stronger together, so we are here to listen to you and welcome emails of support and your suggestions. : firstname.lastname@example.org
"Never give up. You work with a horse and this sport brings more disappointments than successes. You have to stay patient and be willing to try again and again!!
H.R.H Prince Mansour Al Saud
Seasons Results UAE
All sport in the UAE is about community and supporting the next generation of athletes. The Show Hub supports all the young riders coming out of riding school level up to the very top. Pictured above is a young team coached by Jessica Kruis Black at Sharjah Equestrian and Racing Club. We commend Jessica on her commitment to these youngsters. Jessica, is at every training show encouraging and teaching them on all aspects of their journeys. The improvement over this past season is phenomenal. We wish them the very best over the summer and next season. Perhaps we are looking at future UAE World Cup potential. Well done Jess!
Our budding riders from left to right Rashed Alfalasi, Sultan AlNuaimi, Khalifa AlNuaimi, Khalifa AlShamsi, Sheikh Humaid AlNuaimi, Humaid Alfalasi, Saif AlHashimi, Ahmed AlHashimi and Khaled AlNuaimi
H.R.H Prince Mansour Al Saud is the twenty-year-old nephew of the King of Saudi Arabia. A privileged position to be able to have access to the best training and horses but certainly not one that has been handed to him without him first showing deservedness. Prince Mansour, is a well-rounded young man, currently studying for a Finance and Banking Bachelor Degree at Dar Al Uloom University, Riyadh. Following his degree Prince Mansour will go on to complete a Masters degree and eventually fulfill the wishes of his Father by opening his own business consultancy.
Prince Mansours’ passion for horses started young and it was clear early on that he would one day represent his country alongside the greats. His journey began with the first seven years dedicated to dressage however. He was given permission to ride this discipline only following a riding accident involving the Princes’ Uncle, H.R.H Prince Abdullah Bin Saad Al Saud, who had an unfortunate and rather severe show jumping fall. Prince Mansours’ parents were understandably nervous for their Son, who desperately wanted to jump. Watching others around him jumping and competing he says was hard to deal with at a young age, not really understanding his parents’ wishes; "as kids we all think we are unbreakable".
PRINCE ON A MISSION
H.R.H Prince Mansour Al Saud talks to us about his future aspirations in the sport
It was his Cousin H.R.H Prince Abdullah Bin Miteb who gifted the young Prince a very special Bay show jumper in 2007 called Rasco. Unbeknown to his parents who thought the pony was a Dressage pony, Prince Mansour started competing in Show Jumping. It wasn’t long before his family realised that the young Prince had gone against their wishes to compete in the sport, which could have ended his dream. However, after seeing their Son ride and the fire in his heart competing, they soon realised he was talented at the discipline, perhaps due to the seven years dedicated to learning the importance of flat-work, and was extremely serious about the sport. At that moment they gave up the fight and supported him whole heartedly.
"Never give up. You work with a horse and this sport brings more disappointments then successes. You have to stay patient and be willing to try again and again !!
Prince Mansour rode the pony for three years before his father bought him his first horse Rubens Des Nauves (Gazelle Du Mesnil Ii x Arpege Pierreville) from France. He went on to compete at Nationals and 1.45's Internationally. He had this horse for seven years competing in Riyadh and Doha, winning the junior section at The Nofa Equestrian Resort home of the world class King Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud Grandstand in two consecutive years as well as placing in the top three at most events. He says "Ruben taught me everything, he was the perfect master and gave me all the experience I needed to progress.” After Reuben he bought Unta Z (Citz Z x Untouchable Z) a Grey Zangershide mare. Prince Mansour was doing very well with her until she had an incident in the stable that has left her partially blind in her right eye;
"We couldn't figure out what had happened to her, it's a mystery, we came down one morning, and her eye was very swollen and white. The vet was called immediately and after two months off work and various medical treatments the mare was left with scar tissue over the cornea resulting in forty percent vision. We took her right back to the very beginning, it was almost like re-breaking a youngster with new experiences over fences, starting with trot poles and working back up to the 1.20's over a five month period. I never felt I had to accommodate her in the arena as we had taken things so slowly that she was given time to make her own adjustments. She is now back jumping Grand Prixs’ with a heart of a lion.”
Next on the agenda was his new Bay Capelotti By Martsyl (Calvaro x Quouglof Rouge. Who shot Prince Mansour to the top in many events and following a super summer in 2017 she still continues to be a great horse for the Saudi rider. Prince Mansour has trained with Olympic Medallists and the top trainers in the sport, Ramzy Al Duhami, Khalid Al Eid, Ibraheem Bisharaat, Jerom Guery to name few. He now has Said Saad by his side and says he’s honest, always positive and always finds a solution to problems and setbacks which keeps him working for the better and most importantly “considers him family”. Prince Mansour says of Said Saad “I benefited a lot since I didn’t have a personal trainer in the past years and always need someone like him to keep me on track and moving in the right direction.”
Finally, I asked Mansour about his future goal; "well to be honest, I want to be a successful person in my life and be the best I can be, whether in sport, business or as a horseman. The ultimate would be to compete at the World Equestrian Games, Olympics and World Cup and bring medals home. I want to achieve all that equestrian sport has to offer and I will continue to challenge myself to achieve those targets.”
Silver medal in King Abdullah Show Jumping Festival 2013
Bronze medal in King Abdullah Show Jumping Festival 2014
4th in the Doha Arab League "World Cup Qualifier" 2014
Silver medal in Kingdom International Show Jumping Championship 2015
5th In Ommen "Netherlands" 2016
2nd on two occasions in the Doha Arab League " World Cup Qualifier" 2016
5th in Lier, Belgium 2017
2nd & 6th in Opglabeek, Belgium 2017
2 x Gold Medals in Nofa Equestrian Resort 2017
Mansour & Trainer Said Saad
Global Equestrian Mind Coach
#1Bestselling author, columnist
However, it does mean that they are of course unpredictable which can be favourable and unfavourable depending on the reaction.
For example if they panic and spook causing time faults or fences to fall, it is of course unfavourable. But when they are barely containable and channel that energy in to working with you and the jump in front of them then this is where best performances are made and world title are won.
My point being that for us to be able to perform our best under pressure we need to be available to ride instinctively.
So we can react in a heartbeat to whatever is happening beneath us. Instinctive riding is something that the truly great riders can culture each and every time they enter the ring which to the admiring onlooker looks like “Confidence” the ability to focus and react the the situation instantly then forget it and move on to the next.
To be able to do this we need to clear or mind of cutter, when our mind is full it has no room for creative/ instinctive thinking so it has to relay on patterns and habits it knows already and will match the one it feels is most appropriate to the current situation. Problems arise when the learned behaviour does NOT suit the situation happening underneath you.
Perhaps you need to support and your mind tells you to freeze, or perhaps you need to wait and your mind tells you to run – so in turn you put too much pressure on the horse and disaster happens!
Practice visualising your perfect round- so your mind learns that it is a positive thing
DO NOT allow yourself to spend time visualising all that could go wrong.
Practice mindful riding, when you are on your horse make sure it is only you and he in the world. No HEADPHONES
Notice these 5 points about him, how he feels, what mood he is in, how is his breath, is he straight, does he feel happy under you. And concentrate only on fixing those 5 things.
NO matter where
How to Cultivate Confidence when it matters the most
We have all had that experience when we want something so much it becomes all consuming. We live, breath, eat and sleep it.
Then it seems like the more we try, the harder we work, the more commitment we give to training, the more we seem to doubt our ability and the worse we seem to perform.
One of the most frustrating facts about riding is that our team mate is a horse!
An instinctive creature who doesn’t understand logic or reason, which is for the most part what makes them such phenomenal creatures.
What can we do to stop this happening?
In 2011, Al-Faris Championship introduced the Jordanian Style. In 2012, the Championship featured combining the Jordanian Style with the Turkish Style under one name, known as the "Oriental Style". In 2018, Al-Faris Championship not only introduces a new Jordanian Style, Knows as Al-Gahra (Arabic for Raid), but also; two newly developed titles (in addition to the first three ranks of each discipline). The first is Al-Faris Honorary Award for best chivalrous behavior and horsemanship, and the second is the title "Al-Muntaser" for the best overall ranking competitor out of all three Styles (in additional to the allocated prize money).
Participating in the Al-Faris International Horseback Championships is by invitation only.
Al-Faris IHA Championship,
Office of HRH Prince Hashim bin Al Hussein,
The Royal Hashemite Court,
HISTORY OF THE SPORT:
Mounted or Horseback Archery was introduced in the Middle East Region by Turkish tribes in the early 8th century. It was perfected among the Turkish Emirates, such as; the Mameluke Reign in Egypt and by the Moguls of India. This sport developed during the Ottoman Empire into an imperial activity and consisted of different types and techniques, such as; target archery, far distance archery, and short distance archery. Horse-racing and mounted Horseback Archery were amongst the favored sports by the Prophet Mohammad, peace be upon him, the Caliphs, Princes, Governors, and State Officials. Prophet Mohammad, peace be upon him, was well versed in horsemanship and knighthood arts, encouraging his companions to emulate him in this regard. The Prophet, peace be upon him, used to organize horse and camel races, as well as marksmanship, swimming, fencing and lancing competitions.
Archery was a main pillar in the way of “Furusiyya”. The ancient archery schools were set up like guilds of a spiritual brotherhood carrying this knowledge and understanding of the Sunnah of Prophet Mohammad, peace be upon him. Unfortunately, the knowledge of archery and the training of warhorses were later forgotten by Muslim communities for more than 100 years. Al-Faris International Horseback Archery Championships, however, brings back this knowledge and revives this sport in the region, while preserving and manifesting knightly skills and traditional weapons, such as; the spear, the sword, and the bows and arrows.
A two-days event, which will take place on April 20-21, 2018 in the capital city of Amman, and where three different main styles will be executed: The Oriental (Jordanian) Style, known as “Al-Ghara”, the Asian (Korean) Style and the European (Hungarian) Style.
The best competitors from 24 countries, including Jordan, will participate in this unique event. They will be competing not only to win the first three ranks per style, but also to win the allocated prize money and both Al-Faris newley developed titles.
We got to speak to Feth & Zana Greenwood from The Center of Horseback Combat in the UK. Who wil be at the All-Faris III Championship. We look forward to hearing all about their experience at the event. As well as catching up with Al-Faris on the results.
Wishing all the competitors the very best at the Championships.
Al-Faris International Horseback Archery Championships (Al-Faris IHAC) is a two - day event held in Jordan under the Royal Patronage of His Majesty King Abdullah II ibn Al-Hussein. Al-Faris Championship was first launched in Jordan in 2011 to promote the sport in the region and also, to present Horseback Archery as a worldwide Intangible Cultural Heritage sport.
Al-Faris Championship Introduces new styles and techniques every year. It includes a variety of archery styles, such as: the Oriental (Jordanian Style, the Asian (Korean) Style and the European (Hungarian) Style. In addition to a selection of shows and performances, such as; Saber Fighting, Mogu Show, Tent-Pegging, Vaulting and other Archery Martial Arts Performances. The best competitors from over twenty countries - including the host country - participate in this unique event, competing for the top three ranks per style, the allocated prize money and "Al- Faris" titles.
Feth Greenwood & Zana Cousins
Next stop Jordan
Image credit Amanda Stringfellow Barcroft Media Ltd
Karl and Zana Greenwood set up the first ever dedicated centre for traditional Horseback Archery tuition in the UK - The Centre of Horseback Combat in Hertfordshire. They teach the traditional equine sports of Horseback Archery and a kind of Russian rules tent pegging called Dzhigitovka – Mounted Gymnastics and Mounted weapons (Sword, Lance, Throwing Knife, Archery, and Pistol). Karl and Zana finally met the Jordanian Horseback Archery team in person last year at the World Dzhigitovka Championships in Moscow where the UK and Jordan had sent teams to compete. The British Team was then invited to select and send competitors at the Al Faris Championships, and Zana was originally selected by the National Horseback Archery Society (UK) to compete, but unfortunately injured her hand during a fire at The Liverpool International Horse Show where the UK Dzhigitovka team were performing for the New Year celebrations. Karl will therefore be competing alone this year. Each country invited has their own internal selection process organised by their National Governing Body to select competitors
Number One in Eventing
Tel: 0044 1442 462715
Gaddesden Place Stables, Bridens Camp, Hemel Hempstead
Packages tailor made for clients in the Middle East and Globally.
Train with Robert
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Options available to lease horses from Amateur to Grand Prix.
Choose Day, Weekend or Long term training.
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For your tailor made package contact:
In a career that has spanned three decades, Robert has competed in the Olympic Games and topped BJA'S ranking list for three consecutive years. He has represented his country in the Nations Cup on over 100 occasions. Robert has won back-to-back British Open titles in addition to numerous World Cup Qualifiers and Grand Prix's. Now Robert is opening his doors to you.
If you want to learn and train with the BEST.. this is your chance.
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The Show Hub has been working closely with Robert Smith and his wife Raffaelle to bring you this fantastic opportunity. Train at Brookfurlong Farm, the home and Training Centre of one of Great Britain's most successful international show jumpers.
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Image credit Nawaf Al Johani
The beauty of AlHawajer Stud
On the 28th March 2018 I had the pleasure of visiting the Al Hawajer Arabian stud in Sharjah and spend time with Stable Manager Rebecca Wendon. I arrived at the gates flanked by two stone horse heads and entered an oasis of lush grass paddocks, overflowing bougainvillea’s and old-style architecture and was instantly struck by the beauty and tranquillity.
The first paddock I drove past had one of Al Hawajer’s finest homebred stallions Nashmi Al Hawajer, a 4 year old by Marajj, out of Maniba Bint Ibn Narav. I was mesmerised immediately by his natural presence, carrying himself as if he was performing for championship judges. Nashmi to date has been awarded many titles including Unanimous Junior Colt Vichy International, Bronze World Yearling Colt, Local Bred Silver Champion Junior Colt to name a few. He really is quite something when you see him up close.
I was greeted by Rebecca who has been with the stud for over 9 years and oversees all elements of the breeding, training and showing programme. This year alone Al Hawajer have been blessed with 31 foals and understandably I wanted to meet them all! Rebecca invited me to walk around the grounds and I was in sheer heaven; the premises boast some of the most state of the art facilities I have seen in the UAE. On this, my first visit, I got to meet some of the young Filly's and Colts to experience their natures at home. I have always been very interested in the unique characteristics of Arabians and how they perform in the show ring and luckily Rebecca was willing to share as much time in answering my questions as I needed.
I spent three hours meeting every single one of the Al Hawajer stallions, breeding mares, fillies and colts, some of which were as young as one month old. They all had two things in common; the gentlest natures and charismatic presence demanding that your eyes feast on their beauty. I believe this to be down to the amazing care and passion that Dr Ghanam Al Hajri and his family have had for horses for many years, the welfare and happiness of them is their first priority and this radiates in there natures, Rebecca said "when the family go missing on the farm you can usually find them sitting in one of the stables having quiet moments with the youngstock". It’s really is a special place.
Image credit Gregor Aymar
Dominic M himself is 6 old stallion and having already been awarded Brazilian National Champion as a colt, will be travelling from Al Hawajer Stud in early May where he will be leased to the European Breeders Trust. Rabooba Al Hawajer is just one of the exquisite foals that has been sired at the stud from this stallion. She has the lines of Marwan Al Shaqab who has won over twenty titles in his time. No wonder this filly shows such amazing talent for the ring.
Rebecca then brought some of the young stock to play in the paddocks with the dams and grooms. Something that Rebecca feels is of high importance at a young age is the interaction, trust and seeing the handler as play time.
My first educational visit at Al Hawajer had been a special experience. My initial reason for visiting the Al Hawajer Stud was to learn about Arabians and their history. I have certainly come away with a wider view of Arabian Showing and a new-found love for the Arabian Horse. Next Month I will be back at Al Hawajer to learn about the breeding program, stallion collection and artificial insemination.
I must thank Abdula Rahman Alabdouli of Alabadla Stud for the introduction and a special thank you to Rebecca Wendon and Dr Ghanam AL Hajri for this opportunity and their precious time.
My initial reason for visiting the Al Hawajer Stud was learning about Arabians and the history. I was also privileged to meet Dubai International Gold Medal Filly Robooba Al Hawajer. The way this filly performed at the show would make you think she was a four-year-old seasoned show mare. Everything was taken in her stride and she looked like she was born for the stage and the admiring crowds. Rabooba Al Hawajer is the daughter of Dominic M whos pedigree combines some of the most valuable bloodlines in the world. Dominic M is a rare double Versace, Versace as a sire did not have so many offspring but was a stallion that Dr Ghanam and Rebecca admired for his looks, being extremely pretty and one of the most modern looking for his time. Unfortunately Versace died at a young age but made a huge impact on the Arabian breed. Al Hawajer has alot of Versace bloodlines on the his farm to this day.
Rabooba Al Hawajer
Dubai Internationals Champion Gold Filly
Dominic M & some of his offspring
A bedouin tale
"I create thee, Oh Arabian.
To thy forelock, I bind Victory in battle.
On thy back,
I set a rich spoil and a Treasure in thy loins.
I establish thee as one of the Glories of the Earth...
I give thee flight without wings."
April 28th 2018
Milan 2018 International B Arabian Horse Show.
Arabian Shows this Summer
July 18th 2018
Brazilian Arabian Horse
July 7th 2018
Strohen C European Show
July 8th 2018
Strohen B International Show
June 23rd 2018
Menton Mediterranean and Arab Countries
Arabian Horse Championships
June 9th 2018
Bruges 2018 C European Arabian Horse Show
June 10th 2018
Bruges International B Show
May 12th 2018
Austrian National and International Show
October 27th 2018
Arabian Horse European
May 12th 2018
La Movida Open house 2018
Whats your current role here in the UAE?
Currently I work as the Riding Section Manager at Wrsan Stables. This involves managing a team of riders, grooms and 40 horses. The team works with a variety of horses at different stages of their training from just starting under saddle to competing regularly at the national shows.
How did you get into dressage?
It was quiet random that I ended up doing dressage. After finishing my trainer courses, I worked for a stud farm with jumping and dressage stallions. After some time there, I did not have enough time to compete in both disciplines, so I choose dressage. I feel like dressage teaches you to ride and understand horses in another level. It´s a constant balance of different impulses that you have to reach to. I like the sensitivity of dressage and the sense of achievement you get when you master the exercises. The most difficult part about dressage is to make it look easy.
You work specifically with Arabians, when did that love start?
Prior to moving to the UAE and taking up the job at Wrsan I had no experience working and riding Arabian horses. However, I have new found respect for the breed and really enjoy producing and developing their athleticism for dressage, which they are not specifically bred for.
Have you also worked with warmbloods? if so what do you feel the difference is with working with the different types in a training environment?
Yes, I only worked with warmbloods prior to moving to the UAE. The warmbloods are usually specifically bred for either dressage or showjumping, therefore they tend to be more powerful, have expressive gaits and sometimes cope better when training the required movements of a dressage test. Although the Arabian horse is very eager to please and an intelligent breed, it sometimes can take longer to produce them due to their more sensitive and stressful nature.
Can you describe a typical day for you?
A typical day starts in the morning by checking all the horses, dealing with any issues that might occur and then preparing the ride list and schedule for the day. Then I start riding, usually between 6-8 horses per day and while riding I’m also helping and giving the other riders advice with their horses. Then after riding it’s usually sorting out some paper work in the office and planning for competitions.
How as a rider do you keep yourself fit?
Rider fitness is very important for my job and with riding multiple horses each day it tends to keep you reasonably fit, but I also take part in a fitness class each evening to improve core strength and stay in better shape to benefit my riding and the horses.
"I have new found respect for the breed and really enjoy producing and developing their athleticism for dressage, which they are not specifically bred for".
After watching Line in the saddle over the past few years, you can only admire her elegance as a Dressage rider and a very successful one at that. Not on the normal Warmbloods we see in the UAE but some of the finest x Arabian Show Horses and Racing Arabians from the Al Wrsan Stud in Abu Dhabi. We got to tap into the brain behind the initiative of giving the Arabian another life after racing and the show ring.
His Highness Sheikh Sultan Bin Zayed Al Nahyan with his breeding stallion Mahboob Wrsan.
Al Khattar Wrsan.
Has won numerous amounts for the UAE in international competitions.
The picture is from Janow Padlowski, Poland, when he became a Gold Champion in the European Championship for Arabian Sporthorses in 2015.
Al khattar Wrsan has won many competitions here in the UAE up to Prix St. George level as well as a lot of Championships and FEI World Dressage Challenge advanced level in 2016.
The Arabian Dressage Queen
The PRE Stallion Atrevido MPG
Who’s your favorite horse and why?
Well I have several, but Al Khattar is my favourite horse at the stables, as he competes to Prix St. George and is a consistent performer at each show, whilst having a quirky personality that you have to work with. He´s a small stallion with a big heart. He has been doing a great job and has won many medals for the UAE on the international arenas. Also, PRE Atrevido is another stallion I really enjoy working with.
You compete abroad with the horses, whats your favorite event and why?
Each year we usually travel to the European Arabian Sport Horse Championships in Austria. This is a nice event, as it's the best of the Arabian horses competing in Dressage and Showing. Plus the playing field is the same for everyone, as all the horses are Arabian. My favorite event, however was Aachen, Germany, but Janow Padlowski in Poland has also really great competition arenas and facilities.
How do you feel the competitions are in comparison to the UAE in the Arabian dressage sector?
The competitions in Europe are much more competitive with the Arabian horses. There's a big community that continually try to improve the standards and promote the Arabian horse as a worthy sport horse. Today there is no Arabian sector in UAE dressage.
Do you think we should have Arabian riding showing in the UAE?
I think it’s very important that Ridden Arabian showing classes are held in the UAE. It promotes the bred, but also gives an added after-life for these horses after their showing in-hand career. When I arrived to the UAE we went to several Ridden Classes, but now all of them has been cancelled so that´s a shame.
What are your main aims for next year?
To continue to get some good results on the national circuit and see some new horses come up through the ranks.
How do you maintain your horse's health?
The horses health is regularly maintained by ensuring their diet, workload, feet and general care routines are continually checked. Most of the horses I ride come to me after a previous life in a different discipline, so you have to work carefully with the other expert staff on the farm to keep them in the best health and manage any previous injuries accordingly. I also believe in varied training so I include climbing, interval, swimming etc.in the training schedule every week.
Whats your plan for the horses in the summer months?
The horses that have been competing all season will have some down time and will be lightly worked for a few weeks. We are lucky to have an indoor arena with AC, so the main focus will be on training some of the younger less experienced horses, plus staff will be taking annual vacation.
Who is your inspiration as a rider?
I am usually inspired by the people around me but I have to say Isabel Werth. She has educated so many Grand Prix horses on international level. My trainer, Bjarne Nielsen is one of my best role models. Of course he is great with horses and the training, but also very good with people as a mental coach.
Whats the best piece of advice you have been given?
Have discipline. That´s what dressage really is about. When motivation fails – discipline takes over.
How would you inspire the younger generation that are looking to follow the Dressage path?
I think to inspire the younger generation we need to start from the bottom up. I help sometimes with the young boys at the Boudheib Academy, where we hold dressage competitions for them. When you work them and they see you doing it yourself they are inspired to go out and achieve the same. We need to encourage more collaborative training programmes between all the centers for the young people in the UAE. To get a good trainer is more important investment than to buy an expensive horse. The ideal would be to have someone to help you on a daily basis.
Line & Muteeaa Wrsan winning 2 golds a silver and a bronze in the
European Championship for Sport Arabians in 2017
Bint Al Sahraa Wrsan winning in Aachen, Germany with Almost an 80% score in 2016
'HUMANS & HORSES IN HARMONY'
by Annie Haresign
The famous American business leader, Harold S. Geenen once said, “Leadership is practiced not so much in words as in attitude and actions”. The same principle could well be applied to working with horses where communication skills, body language and empathy all play an equal part in gaining the best from your equine partner.
The Al Marmoom Initiative based near Al Qudra lakes has opened its stable doors to a new kind of student. Known for its riding and gardening lessons for students of determination, the Centre has hosted another form of equine-based learning. These courses are aimed at developing ‘emotional intelligence’ or ‘EQ’; typically, leadership, communication and confidence skills.
Two specialist coaches in horsemanship and communication, Tauseef Qadri, experienced horseman and former Head of HR at Yum! brands and Annie Haresign, a multi-disciplined equestrian coach and manager, have teamed up to provide tailored workshops where a variety of clients can benefit from experiential learning with horses. “It’s something we’ve wanted to share here in the UAE. We’ve both run courses like this in other countries and have seen how the ‘magic’ of horses can impact on lives”.
“Clients come in all shapes, sizes and backgrounds” says Annie, “Our courses are also perfect for school children who may be struggling to succeed in educational environments. Experiential learning with horses is known to be beneficial for those who’ve experienced trauma, suffer from emotional disabilities or are from a background of abuse. In the past we have shared our passion for horses with corporate managers to post-conflict military veterans and young people from dysfunctional backgrounds. The change that can be witnessed by interacting with these amazing animals is nothing short of miraculous”.
The team is in the process of aligning courses with an educational body to certified their curriculum. Tauseef agrees: “We know that for many young people, vocational qualifications are the best option to quantify their abilities. Using equine-based learning is a perfect platform to help them succeed in life”.
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Stockists of the best equipment, feed and supplements in the region.
The Al Marmoom Initiative’s small herd of horses have been lending a helping hoof to this new project. Their kind, calm and gentle characters are great ambassadors for horse-kind and soon become much-loved partners for those on the course. “Horses mirror the emotions and energy of the human leading them” says Tauseef. “The horses are the teachers, not us. We set up safe exercises where the student has to explore and develop their own communication skills, ability to lead and practice emotional control. Working with a horse, no matter it’s size, will always deliver a better, more memorable lesson to the student”.
Courses are 1 – 2 days in length, are tailored to students needs and combine classroom, stable and arena activities. Tauseef and Annie believe that their unique set of skills will only compliment the great work that is already happening at the Al Marmoom Initiative and are grateful for the opportunity to share their knowledge and passion for horses with yet more people in need. “We are all about reconnecting humans and horses in harmony” says Tauseef. “Whether it’s a horsemanship groundwork class for owners and riders where they want to build a better relationship with their horse or an equine-assisted learning based course for corporates and school children – we have so much to learn from these fantastic creatures and to have them in our lives can only be described as a blessing”.
Equine Gastric Ulcer Syndrome
The stomach is made up of two areas the glandular and non-glandular, the glandular secrets acid and is equipped to exist bathed in stomach acid. The non-glandular is more like skin, and is very poorly equipped to have stomach acid on it for a long period of time, and therefore is much more likely to develop ulcers. It has been demonstrated that in most performance horses the existence of stomach ulcers is likely in +80% of stable kept performance horses. If the horse is experiencing a lot of pain/ pain management drugs, stress or periods of prolonged starvation or low fibre intake then the ulcers (graded from 1-4) will start to get worse and become bigger, deeper and more problematic. It is worth mentioning that at this time of year it is good to remember that foals are really susceptible to developing ulcers, and very poor at showing us that they have got them.
Stress is the biggest trigger for gastric ulceration in any species. The high levels of stress hormones cause the receptors
in the stomach to over product acid and therefore increase the acidity of the stomach.
Most horses that are eating a low fibre diet with poor chew rates and high starch and sugar levels in their diet will be predisposed to developing stomach ulcers. High starch diet (+2g/kg Body Weight) over stimulates the production of acid in the stomach and increases the pH in the stomach dramatically, this is the reason why competition horses and race horses can be so prone to stomach ulcers as they are fed high quantities of starch to release energy for them to perform well. Thankfully now we have designed a wide range of performance feeds that can keep you energy levels up without the need for a high starch diet.
Anatomy of the stomach
Horses evolved to eat a high fibre low starch diet, over 18 hour days of selecting and browsing through the environment and taking in low amounts without competition from other horses and environmental stressors. Now fast forward to the modern day feeding situation where the horse is stabled with no access to roughage for long periods of time and the feeds are large and of much higher starch and sugar content than they used to be, and the feeding schedule is usually a time of high stress where the horse is anticipating feeding and waiting for it to happen. Racehorses in particular start the day early on and trying to get them to eat a small feed before exercise is difficult. And then when they are fed they are given high starch food with little or no roughage to buffer it.
Imagery credit to Abler
Causes and epidemiology
By Dr Judith Maxwell MRCVS BVSc BSc (hons)
Water intake and horses has also been taken in to consideration with horses that develop stomach ulcers as the amount of water in the stomach will help to dilute the concentration of acid and if the horse is restricted from water (due to it being taken away) or lack of access due to traveling or lack of availability or thirst drive is diminished, ultimately caused by stress, usually due to being in a new place and the horse spending large periods of time not drinking or eating forage; the most obvious time for this is when the horse travels away for a show, or goes into the vets or moves stables/ yards.
Fasting or restricted intake
Laminitic, hospitalised horses and greedy monsters that eat everything in front of them; will be prone to developing stomach ulcers as they do not trickle food into their stomach and then will empty it quickly and will be standing around for long periods of time with increasing acid levels and no food (and associated saliva) to buffer it. The use of small holed hay nets, feeder balls and an extra source of forage, usually in the source of a chaff in a feed bowl, will help to reduce time between feeds and promote as much chewing and saliva production as possible.
Diagnosis of stomach ulcers are evaluated with gastroscopy, a flexible camera that can go down to the stomach. This is usually repeated to see how well the lesions are healing and to see if there are any new ulcers forming. The clinical signs of reduced appetite, weight loss, poor coat, colic/ abdominal sensitivity, diarrhoea and behavioural changes should encourage you towards getting your horse scoped and identifying whether or not you have a problem, it is best to discuss this with your vet.
If your horse has a history of severe ulcers, then the vet will recommend specific drugs to help reduce the production of acid and will also offer drugs that will aid the healing of an ulcer and reduce the ability for the acid to stick to the non-glandular region of the stomach. It will also give you an opportunity to start making changes to the horses management and diet to stop them coming back once you have finished you treatment.
Training and performance
Horses that are training in high intensity work where they are galloping fast or jumping, will be at an increased risk, as they are splashing their stomach acid around their stomach and then it will be coming into contact with the non-glandular areas that will ulcerate and become painful. Historically racehorses have been fed low levels of forage as it will limit how much hard feed you can get them to eat. The thought was that this would slow the horse down if it had too much fibre in their hind gut and therefore extra weight to carry around.
Some horses move acid around so violently in their stomach that they develop ulcers in their oesophagus (food pipe from the mouth to the stomach). These are really painful when they occur. These horses really benefit from eating just before exercise. I recommend a small feed (1-2 handfuls) of chaff/fibre, ideally this should have oil in it and alfalfa to give the full benefits we have discussed below. It will also form a raft to reduce the ability for the acid to splash whilst the horse is exercising.
High fibre low starch feeding (ideally <1g/kg Body weight)
>1kg/100kg Body weight in hay/ haylage; increasing the frequency of feeds
Reducing the size of feeds
Turn out as much as possible
Give varied sources of fibres in the horses diet, a range of both long (hay/haylage) and short (sugar beet/ grain fibres) will give you the best chance of getting the digestive system into a healthier state.
Alfalfa Chaff in particular is an excellent source as it contains a good range of fibre and Ca to neutralise the acid, it requires a considerable amount of chewing (saliva contain more calcium to aid in further chewing), is low in sugar and in the majority of cases you can supply an extra bowl of chaff like that for the horse to pick at, which will give them an option to eat more slowly and have another source of fibre for the stomach.
The use of oil have also proven useful for buffering and emulsifying the gastric juices. Up to 100ml/100kg BW per day of vegetable oil, but watch your vitamin and mineral levels.
Encourage as much water intake as possible, clean buckets and apples bobbing can improve water intake.
Manage stressful events, such as travel, competition and hospitalisation
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