Slightly delayed blog following the RDA Nationals, thankfully, and mostly, because we’ve been so busy!
We have now exhibited at the RDA Nationals for four out of five years, and the advancements made in the rider’s abilities, the level of competition, and the various types of competition was wonderful to witness.
What started off as mainly dressage and some Carriage driving has grown exponentially and includes; Showjumping, Vaulting, Best Turned Out Horse & Rider, and the Countryside Challenge where some horses definitely had minds of their own!
The Costume Freestyle Dressage to Music produced some wonderful and engaging performances, namely, from the adorable little Woody to a brilliant performance by Abbie Waller of Penniwells RDA. And as the matador valiantly tried to protect the beautiful lady, the ‘bull’ didn’t bat an eyelid as a flag was waved in its face.
We’re delighted to be able to say that we had two orders as a direct result of the show, which means we’ll be donating £200 to the RDA and £100 to Max (read on). One such happy customer is Darren, and we look forward to delivering him his chair soon.
Prior to working as a volunteer, I had no idea how important the RDA is, or of all the benefits it provides and not just physically.
Whilst it looks like a great opportunity to simply have fun, recent research from RDA into rider outcomes shows that after just 12 weeks;
“74% demonstrated physical improvement, 77% experienced greater confidence and 75% more enjoyment. 65% showed a greater willingness and ability to communicate, 72% showed improved relationship building skills and 78% demonstrated clear advances in horsemanship.”
One of my favourite videos is on the RDA Riding Everest Facebook page, where Robyn talks about how the RDA have helped her on an emotional, physical and social level. In a place where no one sees disability as a problem, her social anxiety is greatly reduced and in her own words she has become the ‘best version of myself”.
It is my belief that the RDA is relatively unknown and underrated, which is a great shame given the extent to which it helps so many people, but is this about to change?
Max Stainton, a young man with Cerebral Palsy, has experienced first hand how the charity has helped him, and in return, he is about to do something quite spectacular.
Max is attempting to ride to Everest Base Camp … on a horse! If he achieves his goal he will be the first person with CP ever to reach Base Camp!!!!!!!
Max is undertaking a number of challenges around the UK to help him raise funds and we’re hoping to be involved with at least one of those, so do watch out … you never know where you’ll see a Trekinetic!