Hi Sally – just let you know that Bee and I had a great day at the dressage yesterday: 2nd in intro to canter and 1st in Intro B! Bee felt lovely and so much lighter in my hand than before we had lessons with you. Thank you so much! …Also I just wanted to drop you a quick message to say thank you again for the brilliant grid work session yesterday. Both myself and Bee were so relaxed all the way through – I haven’t enjoyed jumping like that in months! Anna Powell June 2015
“Hi Sally, Just thought I’d drop you a quick email to thank you for today’s lesson.
I always come out of your lessons on a high, but today was a ‘super-high’. I (we) actually managed to overcome lots of niggling little fears/demons/unknowns and conquer them all and I actually felt in control at all times, I felt as though I was influencing Maisie (both the good & the bad) and felt how small differences in confidence, position & aids made such a huge difference to her. So thanks again, onwards & upwards for 2015! ” Guy Hill January 2015
When I moved to Surrey, just a year ago, Sally was recommended to me by 2 different people. After having a long break from jumping, not having as much confidence as 20yrs ago and having a quirky but talented horse I really felt I needed a teacher who could be sympathetic to my needs!!
Sally has shown me new exercises, new methods to relax, have more faith in my horse and more confidence in my riding. This year I have jumped courses of 90cm, we hadn’t even got round a course before! At home I have been jumping 1m grids! Sally has helped me do all this and with a sense of humour! She really knows her stuff and is so encouraging, after each lesson there has been improvement and more knowledge gained, I couldn’t have wished for more than that! Sarah Rolls November 2014
“Dear Sally, thank you for all your help. You have the patience of a saint and I feel I have come away with lots of positive techniques and coping strategies…..and rather miraculously (considering how he was at the start) a calmer happier pony. I took him jumping yesterday and he was the best he’s ever been. We had the tri-factor of directional control, brakes (!!) and complete focus on each other. It was amazing. I know we are likely a long way off achieving this in competition , but it has given me lots of confidence in what we are working towards in the future and what we are capable of. Big big thanks :)” Claire Stratford May 2014
I purchased my horse called Buttons in January this year after a 14 year break from owning and riding so was quite nervous. My wish for Buttons is to give him the best opportunity in respect of not only schooling but in his general way of being, I wanted to be the owner that Buttons would choose. I knew we both needed some help and Sally came highly recommended to me at the yard where I keep Buttons and after just 1 lesson with Sally I was smitten! Sally’s holistic methodology, thinking… call it what you will is amazing, everything Sally talks about whether it’s about you or your horse – just works but above all, it makes sense. Thanks to Sally helping me understand how my body works in association with my riding, Buttons and I are definitely starting to get connected, growing in confidence and building a great bond of friendship and we look forward to continuing to grow and can honestly say I am very excited about our future. Sally has opened up a new world of horsemanship for us and I would recommend Sally to anyone – whatever their level.” Roz Roberts April 2014
Dear Sally, Thank you for another great lesson today, I have learnt more in the four sessions with you than I have in many years from other instructors. I know we have a long way to go, but I now feel confident that we are heading in the right direction & building a solid partnership. Vicky Nicholls December 2013
“Dear Sally, Abigail and Jasmine have developed enormously over the three years since you have been instructing them. Not only in their confidence, but in their ability to feel for their pony, get the best out of whoever they are riding AND have not just satisfaction, but fun! They have both looked forward to each and every experience and lesson with you and I see how much they have learnt, as they take your words into each and every riding discipline that they now face. Thank you! ”
Patty Waterfall, parent of Abigail and Jasmine January 2013.
“Dear Sally, Thank you so much for teaching and being there for me and Lloyd this last six months. I wish I had started on this path earlier – anyhow, you have now sent me on the right way and the changes in Lloyd and myself have sometimes been breath-taking! Keep up this excellent work, and I hope you can help a lot of other riders and horses to work together in harmony. ”
Charlotte Kroemer May 2013 (now living in Sweden)
“Sally is a gifted riding coach. She communicates her vast riding knowledge with clarity, sensitivity and empathy for both horse and rider. She completely understands how to approach a rider’s crisis of confidence. Her lessons are always inspirational. I feel fortunate to know and to learn from her.”
11th Sept 2012
“It is very difficult to write a brief testimonial for Sally as she has so many skills and has enriched our lives in so many ways.
As a biomechanics coach and riding instructor, Sally combines the ability to see and correct postural defects with a unique understanding of the energetic connection between horse and rider. She uses visualisations to help the rider understand for themselves why certain changes need to be made. These often entertaining visualisations also help the rider to ‘find’ the correct position when practising alone. Sally is brilliant at picking up on the subtleties within the horse/rider partnership, using breathing and an understanding of energy to make profound changes.
Overall, Sally is a fun and lovely person who is approachable and down to earth despite her obvious abilities to work outside the box. I would highly recommend her to anyone looking to improve their position and develop a closer connection to their horse or even just to add a different dimension to their riding.”
20th Sept 2012
“With Sally’s help, I have achieved a level of progression with my horse which I would not have thought possible 2 years ago! From having a horse which resembled a giraffe, so hollow was his back and so high was his head, to having a horse who now reaches into the bridle and lifts his back to give a lovely outline. Sally has helped me correct my own riding assymetries and taught me to “notice” more effectively how my riding is affecting my horse and thus helped to make me more influential as a rider. Her lessons are always huge fun – I can never believe an hour goes so fast! Sally always explains things in clear and understandable language, free from traditional riding jargon (which I never understood anyway!), and often using imageries to reinforce a message. I feel that she takes a personal interest in our progress, and she is always sympathetic to the relationship with the horse. She has given me the confidence to start doing dressage again, as I had virtually given up in despair! Thank you Sally, we could not have done it without you!”
24th November 2010
“I first came across RWYM in 2008, when I found Mary Wanless’s book “For the Good of the Rider” in a small bookshop and was immediately blown away by the depth and quality of Mary’s explanations about the mechanics of riding. I booked myself onto a four-day course at Overdale soon afterwards, and after experiencing the difference that RWYM coaching could make, I was hooked!
At the beginning of 2007, I had fulfilled a long-held dream and started learning to ride again (after doing a small amount of riding as a child), but had struggled with the huge frustration of not being able to make my body follow the instructions that I was being given by my instructors – “sit tall – heels down – look up – relax!” I was a very “low-tone” rider, as Mary would describe it, having little muscle-tone and almost no core stability, and the basic bio-mechanics that Mary taught in that first course revolutionised my position and my stability upon the horse instantly.
At the end of 2008, I found Sally Ede, and started taking RWYM lessons with her on Marco (his Anglicised name, as no-one could pronounce his real name: “Myrkur”) the Icelandic gelding I was sharing. Over the next five years, Sally kept Marco and I company as we experienced the most incredible journey – she taught both of us about finding our ways back into our bodies, about finding a deep and powerful connection between the two of us, about learning how to learn, and how to communicate with each other.
I went from being his part-time sharer, to Marco becoming my first horse and Sally was there coaching and supporting us all the way through. Marco was in his late teens when I first started sharing him, and he struggled with various issues including laminitis and arthritis, but Sally was always able to tailor our lessons to take into account Marco’s ability-level, and also to help me learn how to help him with my riding. I went from learning how to be a good “up-down” rider (how to control my own body so that I wasn’t asking the horse to compensate for my imbalances), to learning how to use my biomechanics and energy-connection to influence the horse I was riding, and Marco went from a pony who had done very little schooling in his life, to starting to learn how to use his body correctly and beginning to explore lateral work.
We went from the picture on the left (where the biomechanics of my position are not too bad, but I’m not being convincing enough to influence Marco’s biomechanics, and although my seat looks ok, there is no real connection or energy flow through it between the two of us) to the picture on the right (from our last lesson with Sally in August 2012 – where Marco is doing a very convincing impression of a dressage pony, with a beautiful lifted back, arched neck and wither, and lovely soft reach into the rein, and the two of us have a completely different connection and flow between our two bodies):
Very sadly, I lost my heart-pony Marco on 28th Sept 2012 to complications from colic at the age of 20. Just as much as Sally, he was the most incredible teacher, but it is thanks to Sally, that I was able to see that in him. She transformed both of our lives, and enriched them immeasurably, and I now count her one of my closest friends. Since then I have had lessons with her on other horses, and it is fascinating to see how every horse responds to the RWYM biomechanics, and the transformation that is possible once you are “speaking their language”.
I cannot recommend Sally highly enough as a RWYM coach. She has an incredible skill at tailoring her teaching to the level that her clients need to hear, and for communicating even complex ideas so that they can be easily understood and acted upon. She has a deep care for the well-being and needs of both the rider and the horse within the lesson, and is an expert “horse-translator” to help improve understanding between horse and rider. I am very proud to count her as my coach and my friend.”
Tamsin Woodard-Smith and Marco
17th December 2012