As the holiday approaches, I begin to think about heading to Florida next week. I am so excited to see old friends and meet new faces. The Emerging Dressage Athlete Programs clinic last year was one of the defining moments of my life. I can only imagine the impact it will have on all the participants this year.
For those of you who haven’t participated in the EDAP clinics or applied for an EDAP clinic I would advise you to visit Lendon’s website http://dressage4kids.com/Emerging%20Dressage%20Athlete%20Program.htm
This program, the website states, is to help find, develop and educate young dressage talent in the United States. You have to submit an application and a video. Once enough young riders in your area have submitted applications a clinic is set up. Lendon comes for a weekend clinic which is itself more than enough reward for the application. I suggest getting several other junior and young riders in your area to apply with you! The clinics are unique in that it isn’t just riding, there are lectures and demonstrations. Then the instructors of the clinics across the US get together and select riders for a week long clinic in Wellington, Florida. The Wellington clinic last year included morning physical fitness workouts, riding instruction by industry greats like Robert Dover, Lendon Gray, Katherine Bates-Chandler, Anne Gribbons, Courtney King-Dye and many others. After lunch which is done as a group (giving you time to meet other riders and auditors) there are hours of lectures and demonstrations by amazing speakers like Dr. Susser. She is a sports psychologist that helped me last year in learning visualization techniques that gave me great focus at FOC and NAJYRC . I really used all the information that I gained at speeches by farriers, veterinarians, massage therapists, chiropractors and so many others.
Even the great instruction, riding and fitness wasn’t the highlight though. Getting to meet so many other young riders was truly inspirational. To see that I am not alone in my goals and to have others to discuss questions, concerns, everything and nothing with since has been amazing. I even took vacations with some of the girls I met at EDAP! We spent a truly hilarious ‘bonding night out’ without any parents or trainers. It was only a movie and KFC but it cemented dozens of friendships.
Finally, I received inspiration from the heightened level of commitment from everyone. This was so motivational for me last year. It kept me focused on my goals and what I had sacrifice to succeed in my dreams. It made my dreams so much more of a reality.
Come with me on this dream trip and apply for EDAP! It will change your life. If you are over 21, or a parent, or just a dressage enthusiast and can’t attend but want to help you can go to the same website and donate to Lendon’s amazing project.
Stay tuned for more news from EDAP next week on this blog…….