Why I founded the Equestrian Athlete?

Ever since I can remember the seed of an idea to combine nutrition and horses has been in my mind. For a while I thought I might go back to uni and study to become an equine nutritionist. However, the thought of trying to find that much extra time in my life was frankly overwhelming. The other idea that lingered in the back of my mind was to work with riders themselves to improve their nutrition. It wasn't until I met friend and colleague Natalie Gavi (@the.equestrian.dietitian) that I realised the idea could be a reality and possibly even a career.

When I finally committed to launching my own business servicing driven equestrians across Australia, I knew what I wanted to achieve. I wanted to help equestrians develop a positive relationship with food and understand how food can enhance performance so that they can feel good and achieve their performance goals in the bodies that they have today.


Underpinning this mission are three core beliefs:

Equestrians are athletes.

Back in the early days of blogging on The Sand Arena Ballerina, I wrote a post called 'The Other Equestrian Athlete'. In this post I outlined why I thought horse riders are athletes. The premise has stuck with me ever since, but become more sophisticated. Now it is my fervent belief that if you show up with intention and you are working towards something with your horse then you are an athlete. You goal may be to ride an international Grand Prix one day, or maybe it's to be able to ride down the road with confidence. Either way if you are showing up and pushing yourself towards this goal, then you my friend are an athlete.

Equestrians can benefit from sports nutrition strategies.

Sports nutrition strategies cover things such as: hydration, fuelling for training and competition and recovery, and equestrian's just like any other athletes can benefit from utilising these strategies. For instance, did you know that dehydration can impact negatively on mood and concentration. I would argue vehemently that riders require exceptional concentration at the very least.

I am excited to complete the Sports Dietitians Australia Sports Nutrition Course to deepen my knowledge and skills in this area and be able to help equestrian optimise their performance in the saddle.

A positive relationship with food and body creates a solid foundation.

While equestrians (like any other athlete) can benefit from a balanced eating pattern and utilsing sports nutrition strategies, both of these require a solid foundation of a positive relationship with food. In the culture we live in, it has been normalised to see our bodies as a problem which need to be fixed. Food becomes a tool to fix our bodies. This in turn creates friction and can lead to a negative relationship with food. Similarly manipulating what we eat, without first being at peace with food (for example seeing foods as morally neutral/neither good nor bad) can lead to a disordered relationship with food.

I also strongly believe that we all deserve to be at peace with food and our bodies. We deserve to be putting our energy and time into the things that truly matter to us, from jobs, to horses, to relationships and much much more.

So if you are ready to work on your relationship with food and your body, or to enhance your athletic performance contact me to book an appointment.

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