Tuesday, 3 February 2015

Book Review - 'My Way' Mary King

One of my presents for Christmas was Mary King's new book, 'My Way'.  It was a book I had seen advertised on her Facebook page and was keen to add to my collection!  I haven't finished reading it from cover to cover because some of it is more 'dip' into but I wanted to review it for you.  

When I reviewed Mark Todd's book back in October I mentioned that I would like to read about the day to day things - and this is exactly what Mary does.  The first part of her book is about Management and she talks about how her yard works and what they do on a daily basis from their daily routine to clipping tips and what kit she uses.

I always love reading about how other people organise their yards and their routines so I found this section fascinating!  

The rest of the book is then divided into the 3 phases of Eventing; Dressage, Showjumping and Cross-country.  Each section includes the aim of the phase, the rider, how to prepare at home and more.

In the Dressage section she gives some great advice about training a youngster but also about improving your riding.  After talking about the basic skills of dressage eg: transitions she has included pages about leg-yield, shoulder in, rein back and more.  On each of these pages she has details, with pictures, of what the rider should be doing, what the horse should be doing and common mistakes.  This section I think is good for dipping into when I am ready to try the movements with Basil!

The Showjumping section has lots of pages of exercises to try at home in preparation for a show.  I think they look really good fun to do at home even if you aren't going to a show.  I am hoping to try some of them this year with Basil.  Mary goes on to talk about how to warm up and walk the course with some hints about striding on doubles amongst others!

The Cross-country section also has tips on speed and the warm up.  It then goes on to some really good advice (obviously) about tackling ditches, banks and drops, water, corners etc.  This includes how you should ride but also how to build your horse's confidence.  Finishing with some more great exercises to try at home (with showjumps) and how to look after your horse after a cross-country round, I loved reading this section.

Throughout the book there are some great photos and I love the layout of it with little boxes on the side with hints, tips and details about 'My Way'.  Yet again I am singing the praises of a book.  In reality I guess you can't learn all of this just from a book.  I still think it is really useful to use alongside lessons or training sessions and I think that her advice is really useful and usable!

Have you seen my 'January Fun' video, watching the horses being silly in the field? 

Look out for Day 2 of my 'One Weekend in January' vlog tomorrow. Horse Life and Love
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Until next time!

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