Claires' Story

I have ridden since I was three years old.

When I was in my early teens I complained of lower back pain and I never felt straight. By my mid to late twenties it became debilitating and I was referred to a very unhelpful surgeon who suggested I got a desk job. I found this faintly amusing as I couldn't sit down for longer than a few minutes.

By this time I was walking with two sticks and living on a high dose of painkillers. I refused to give in and managed to be referred to a surgeon in Nottingham who had a knowledge of riding. After another MRI scan he confirmed I had a curvature in my spine and two prolapsed discs which were cutting into my nerves and affecting the use of my right leg. He wanted to operate but I refused as eventually the discs would disintegrate and free off my nerves, to a degree.

Several years later, this did happen but in the meantime he told me I had to improve my posture to stand the faintest chance.

Hence my involvement with the Alexander Technique. It took over a year for me to stop using my sticks. Throughout everything I continued to ride as it was my job. I found I was becoming straighter but my right leg was still very weak. They were challenging years but I was determined I would not be beaten. I am now in my late forties and am working towards Grand Prix dressage with my Luisitano stallion.

I work with all levels of riders and horses and teach at home or will travel.