The U.S. Eventing Association (USEA) Board of Governors (BOG) recently approved a change to the USEA Eventing Coaches Program (ECP) levels.
In 2021, the ECP, then known as the Instructors Certification Program, changed levels to align with FEI competition levels. Since then, the ECP Committee has learned that having certification levels that included more than one competition level was making it difficult for coaches to achieve eligibility to obtain certification at Level I and II due to the requirement that a coach have at least three students competing at the top level of certification.
Being a successful eventer involves so much more than riding the three phases of dressage, cross-country, and show jumping. Joan Simmons, a founding member of what is now the USEA Eventing Coaches Program (ECP) and a Level III USEA ECP Certified Coach, shared her thoughts about how, more than riding, horsemanship is the foundation of a successful eventing partnership.
Putting 70-plus eventing coaches and instructors in a room and asking them to share their opinions and experiences could be considered the definition of organized chaos. But at the 2022 and 2023 Eventing Coaches Program (ECP) Educational Symposiums, the resulting thoughtful and creative discussion has become a popular educational segment of the symposium, the fruits of which will be helpful to coaches and students alike.
One of my passions is continuing to be a good student, because I think no matter how old I get, there are multiple reasons learning new things inspires me. First and foremost, it helps me be a better rider and trainer, so my horses benefit. Second, it helps me be a better teacher by exposing me to different ways to have a relationship with a horse or a student.
A coach plays a crucial role in the education, safety, and success in competition of event horses and riders. The role of coaches, the techniques they use, and the resources available to them continue to evolve and grow. Jennifer Howlett Rousseau, a Level IV USEA Eventing Coaches Program (ECP) Certified Coach who runs L’Esprit Equestrian, LLC. in Barrington, Illinois, and who serves on the United States Eventing Association (USEA) Board of Governors, shared her thoughts about the importance of proper coaching and the responsibilities that trainers and riders have for creating a successful relationship.
As complex as eventing can be through the various lines and tracks presented to horses and riders in the jumping phases, gridwork can help make things simpler when in the heat of the moment of a competition, clinic, or lesson. Regardless of the level, gridwork teaches horses and riders to establish the rhythm they will need and the feeling they get from successfully riding a line of jumps.
Spending three months in Florida over the winter is all about bringing the basics back to my riding. Most of my horses have lighter work in November and December, so when they go back in training at the start of the new year, I try to make sure that all of my work is about keeping it simple using flatwork, ground poles, cavaletti, and small jumps and focusing on exercises that reinforce the rider and horse connection. In all three phases of eventing, I feel it’s important to have a way of connecting with your horse that is basic and consistent.
With the recent wrap-up of the 2023 Eventing Coaches Program (ECP) Symposium in Ocala, Florida, USEA Podcast Host Nicole Brown chats with ECP Faculty Members Jennifer Howlett Rousseau and Robin Walker about all things related to the ECP. From the USEA Eventing Handbook by the Levels to the benefits of pursuing certification, selecting the best coach for you, recapping this year's Symposium, and more - this week's USEA podcast is the perfect educational tool for coaches and riders alike!
What a fabulous week of coaching for coaches at the 2023 USEA Eventing Coaches Program (ECP) Symposium. Throughout the week, instructors (both ECP certified and non-certified) collaborated with ECP Faculty to discuss relevant and challenging topics and put the USEA Eventing Handbook by the Levels to work through strategizing clear, consistent lesson plans for demonstration riders of all levels across the three phases of the sport.
While the overall focus may have shifted from dressage to show jumping for the second day of the USEA ECP Symposium, the overarching themes from day one were a direct transition to the instruction during the second day of the educational event geared towards eventing coaches of all levels.
Energy abounded during the first day of the USEA Eventing Coaches Program (ECP) Symposium held at Barnstaple Eventing in Ocala, Florida on Tuesday, January 17th. From the event’s kickoff at 8:00 a.m. this morning to the last demonstration ride of the day, participants, ECP faculty, and demonstration riders were full of excitement for what was to come during the three-day educational event geared towards giving eventing coaches from all backgrounds continuing education so they can be the best instructor they can be.