Many of you are familiar with the BSJA Jersey Academy which was established in 2015 to provide structured training opportunities for local riders. Based on the NAF Five Star Horse and Pony Awards offered to BS Members in the UK, the programme offers a series of progressive standards that provide riders with a focus on developing a culture of improvement and offer progressive structured for their training, improved performance in the ring and improved stable management skills. Furthermore, the programme aims also to instil a greater understanding of all areas of horsemanship, respect of the rules, as well as ethics of sportsmanship and recognition of good performance over results.
After consultation with members, coaches and the committee, and in response to feedback from the equestrian survey, we reviewed the structure of the Academy in 2018 and expanded the number of local coaches with the aim of offering more training opportunities throughout the year. Our lead coach remains Paul Crago, a UKCC Accredited Level 3 coach, BS Coach Educator & Assessor and BS Excel Talent Coach; Paul has committed to visit Jersey each month. He also offers the opportunity for BSJA Jersey Academy Members to base horses and ponies with him if visiting the UK for training and competitions and has lorry hook-up and some overnight accommodation available for visitors.
To support the programme and to maintain momentum, we are delighted to advise Alison Rogers and Cilla Perchard remain as part of our programme and are joined by Penny Cruttwell and Kate Warner. Future training sessions will continue to incorporate specific themes, including: Flatwork for jumping incorporating use of poles and grids to improve balance, rhythm, jump of horse; position and technique of rider; confidence of both – Course walking, understanding and riding related distances – Jumping courses – on a surface and on the grass – Tackling jump offs and competitions where you have to choose your own line As a result of feedback, we will incorporate more winter training (weather permitting), after school sessions and lessons on the grass (subject to ground conditions).
All Academy members will receive a training booklet with a structured format to help progressively work through five levels, bronze, silver, gold, platinum and diamond. Members are encouraged to set goals and then monitor, measure and record progress in their booklet which, with the support of the coaches, which will help them to follow and achieve their objectives and targets.