Riders at Hunter Holloway Stables Take Working Out Seriously
We hopped right in on a workout session at Hunter Holloway Stables in Wellington, where trainer Petr Julianov works with the riders. For the eight weeks that junior riders Britta Belline and Hannah Loeffelbein have been showing at the Winter Equestrian Festival, they have added a weekly workout session with Julianov in addition to their riding duties scheduled by Holloway. The two girls say they have learned a lot about fitness and will be continuing a workout program at home.
The hour long session starts with some stretches followed by some squats. The workout included exercise bands for working the outer thigh, kicks for the hips and inner thighs and of course, what workout would be complete without working on the core and abs. The session had a variety of exercises for balance, strength and dexterity such as some friendly soccer, jump squats, medicine balls and kettle balls. The girls agree the sessions have definitely helped them in the tack.
|Hannah Loeffelbein works out with Petr Julianov at Hunter Holloway Stables.|
"I know for sure I couldn't even touch my toes the first week," laughed Loeffelbein, "but now I can go to the middle of my feet."
"Hand-eye coordination and balance has improved for me," added Belline. "Also my ankles were really weak, but now I can actually keep my heels down without my feet rolling underneath me when I'm jumping."
So why isn't riding enough?
|Britta Belline works on her core and hand-eye coordination.|
"It helps the athletes become better balanced, they improve all around and improve their riding," said Julianov. "People can also train on FaceTime from Europe and other places they travel to for sports so working out is easy from anywhere."
Julianov recommends working out an hour at least every other day with 15 minutes of warm up, the workout and 15 minutes of cool down. He works with many show jumping and dressage athletes as well as hockey players and athletes in other sports.
Holloway has private sessions scheduled with Julianov and continues to work on core and shoulder strength for her riding. She started the workouts because of issues with her shoulder, which has improved over the weeks. Holloway tries to work out 4-5 times a week depending on the show schedule.
"Petr (Julianov) is great! He's fun and really helps you achieve your goals. He's good at training everyone at their own level," said Holloway.
Top athletes such as Beezie Madden and Laura Kraut, are serious about their time in the gym as well. Athletes also use trainers to come back from injuries which can be minor or major, all so they can quickly get back in the tack and back to competition.
Belline and Loeffelbein definitely plan to continue some training at home with a friend or on their own because they learned simple exercises they can do with equipment that's easy to purchase such as kettle balls or bands. Especially for those days you just can't make it to the barn, you can get in a quick workout to build strength.
As for me, I totally enjoyed having someone to work out with to have some new exercises to add to my own routine.
What's your workout routine and what helps you the most with your riding? Maybe your barn can organize some group sessions and try the eight week challenge!