<p>The beauty of the senior equine</p> hero image

The beauty of the senior equine

12:00pm CST, Folsom Louisiana.
Yagya Rider Samantha speaks on her 29-Year-Old Gelding, Majik, and the honor of owning a senior equine.

"While owning and riding an older can present certain challenges it also offers a unique perspective on the relationship we have with our horses."

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Like most of us starting out in our equestrian journey we began to learn the basics of riding, competing and general horsemanship with the help of a steady and trusted older horse. Even as an adult rider my first introduction to the world of dressage was on the back of a then 19yr Irish Sporthorse named Majik. Trained up to fourth level dressage and with decades of experience he quickly took on the role of my patient teacher, helping me navigate a completely new skill set and new way of understanding how a horse can communicate with his rider.
A year and half later Majik officially became my teammate. We competed in dozens of local schooling shows up to first level, earning many year end awards. Along the way Majik not only taught me the specific patterns and movements of dressage, but he also taught me the necessity of really knowing your horse. The most important thing for Majik was that he continued to stay fit and healthy which can definitely be a challenge with older horses. With the help of a terrific team of people including my amazing vet, chiropractor and massage therapist and along with a steady training and conditioning regimen, Majik and I were able to compete for several years.
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"It was imperative that I listen to what he was telling me, whether he was having physical and nutritional issues or when he needed a mental break from the demands of being a competition horse."

Finally, at 29yrs old, several old injuries and the general wear and tear on his body meant that it was time to slow things down. Majik is now semi retired and enjoying his time in a big pasture with other senior horses. We still enjoy riding and taking the occasional lesson together although the intensity of those rides is much lower. He constantly surprises me with his work ethic and willingness to be continue to be my patient teacher. Even though we no longer actively compete he still receives all the maintenance and special considerations that he got when he was an active younger horse. After nearly a decade of imparting his knowledge and wisdom as my teammate it is the least I can do for him.

" As I move forward into a new chapter of riding and competing without my tried and true companion, I know that any success I achieve will be because Majik, with all his kindness, was the first to take me down centerline."