Preparation Led to Breakthrough in Top Jumping Ranks
October 2010 - CHESTER SPRINGS, Pa.–
For International Grand Prix rider Callan Solem, preparation has been the key to her success.
Solem has had an incredible year in the show ring, winning top ribbons in grand prix classes at leading horse shows in this country and she attributes it all to careful preparation and horse care.
Whether it is preparing a horse or rider to move up to the next level or prepping a horse for a big class, Solem always makes sure that horses and riders have the best experience possible.
“Your students and horses should always be prepared to be successful,” explained Solem. “I try really hard to anticipate and know what the technical parts of the next level are going to be, so that when the horses or the riders go to step-up they are ready.”
Solem continued, “I make sure that each horse stays confident, and I really want to make everything go well.
“That does not mean I can always guarantee that things will work out perfectly, but I make sure that no matter what happens the horse comes out of the ring with a productive experience.”
Advancing to the next level is not a simple task for the horses and riders under Solem’s care.
The horse and rider must both have a proven record of success before they move forward to the next division.
“The horse and rider need to be consistent at the current level to advance,” she noted.
“Just winning a class does not necessarily mean a rider is ready to move up to the next level.
For example, as jumper riders they need to have a lot of experience with competitive jump-offs to really be prepared to advance.”
Preparing a horse to be successful also means making sure they enjoy their job and that a rider is not “over training.”
Riders should be sure to give their horses as much opportunity to go home and rest as often as possible, even during the thick of the show season.
This time of relaxation will prevent the horse from over training, thus facilitating better results.
“I think it is great for them to come home and get turned out so they can relax and eat grass.” said Solem. “Also, when we go home I do not do a lot in the ring, I spend most of my time in the fields making sure the horses are fit and that they are having fun.
I really love the hills because they become stronger in a shorter amount of time.”
The summer show season is currently wrapping up for Callan Solem Show Stables of Chester Springs, PA.
The hunter/jumper/equitation operation is looking ahead to the indoor circuit, including the Pennsylvania National Horse Show and the Syracuse Invitational Sporthorse Tournament.
Solem will base her barn for the first-time at the Winter Equestrian Festival in Wellington, Fla., this winter.
This follows her long successful run at HITS Ocala, which was capped by winning the leading Grand Prix Rider Award in 2010.
Hunter/jumper rider and trainer Martha Redman will remain home in Chester Springs, training students of all levels in the barn’s indoor facility for local shows.
This spring and summer, Redman’s students have won top honors in hunters, jumpers and equitation at St. Christopher’s, Garden State and Vermont.
Solem is looking forward to an exciting WEF with a new atmosphere and top competition. Among her mounts, she will be showing VDL Torlando in the Grand Prix classes while helping students in the many other divisions offered.
Careful scheduling for the horses and riders will be very important during the 12-week competition, but with diligent preparation and training Callan Solem Show Stables should be regularly in the ribbons.
Name: Callan Solem
Facility: Callan Solem Show Stables, Horseshoe Trail, Chester Springs, Pa.
Specialty: Show jumping.
Training/Education: Carol Thompson, Quiet Winter Farm.
Major accomplishments: Top ribbons in grand prix at major venues.
Rates: On request.
The Horse of Delaware Valley, October 2010