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Here’s a quick tip to take you into your weekend when you’ll be puttering around the barn and hanging out with your horses:

“A blanket should always be folded neatly and hung up,” say pro grooms Cat Hill and Emma Ford in their bestselling book WORLD-CLASS GROOMING FOR HORSES. “Blankets chucked over the wall or railing are not only not very nice to look at but potentially dangerous. Belly and leg straps hanging down can get tripped over or get caught on a horse; then suddenly, you have a loose blanket attached to a horse! A blanket touching the ground can host mice overnight; as a consequence it gets holes or stains in it.”

In their book, Cat and Emma show us several ways to fold a blanket properly. In this 30-second video, you’ll learn the one likely to be of most use this time of year—best for lightweight coolers and sheets:

 

 

You can order a copy of the book Olympic bronze medalist Phillip Dutton calls “unparalleled” and Grand Prix dressage rider Lisa Wilcox says “demonstrates impeccable horsemanship” from TSB’s online bookstore, where shipping in the US is FREE.

CLICK HERE

Trafalgar Square Books, the leading publisher of equestrian books and DVDs for over 30 years, is a small business based on a farm in rural Vermont.

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Susanne von Dietze, author of BALANCE IN MOVEMENT (now available again!) and RIDER & HORSE BACK TO BACK, is an internationally respected and highly sought-after riding coach and clinician. Her first experiences with CENTERED RIDING were possible because of the book’s worldwide distribution—it has been translated into 16 languages! Here she shares how she was introduced to the book and the effect it had on the trajectory of her career:

“I had a very special childhood, growing up in Germany with my father, an ex-cavalry officer, and my mother, a physiotherapist and athletics teacher. Both were riding instructors, as well. We always had horses and I learned how to ride before I learned how to walk.

“My parents started therapeutic riding in Germany, and both thought the riders seat was of prime importance for good riding. Longe lessons and seat corrections were a daily part of my training.

CENTERED RIDING by Sally Swift has been published in 16 languages.

CENTERED RIDING by Sally Swift has been published in 16 languages.

“My mother collected all the books she could find about the rider’s seat, and I have her First Edition of the German Translation of CENTERED RIDING. The pictures in this book have always been fascinating to me and helped me develop my own understanding and improve my teaching over the years. When I was asked by the German Federation (FN) to write a book about the rider’s seat (which became BALANCE IN MOVEMENT) I reread CENTERED RIDING and again was deeply inspired by Sally Swift.

“It was a very, very special honor for me to be invited to a NARHA (North American Riding for Handicapped Association) event in Boston in what I think it was 1999. There I had a presentation and a practical demonstration, and Sally Swift was giving a lecture, too. I will never forget how she was standing the whole time, supported on her little stick, and kept all of us busy with our full attention on her for over an hour in the aisleway of some stable! When she rested afterward, I was invited to meet her. She knew my book and had seen my presentation, and she congratulated me on what she thought was an important work. Her praise and acceptance of my work was one of the most important critiques in my life.

“Sally Swift has deeply affected me, not only with her fabulous concepts, but with her whole personality. In November 2015 I have the honor to be the Keynote Speaker at the Centered Riding Conference in the Netherlands, and will do my utmost to remember this great lady with all my respect.”

TSB has celebrated the 30th anniversary of publishing our first horse book CENTERED RIDING throughout the month of November. We’re excited to now cap it off with a special HorseandRiderBooks.com Sitewide Sale! CLICK HERE to shop now and get 30% off any of our bestselling books and DVDs (some exclusions may apply) for a limited time!

 

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Discounts will show at checkout. Plus, you’ll get FREE SHIPPING in the US! Don’t miss this terrific opportunity to get incredible equestrian books and DVDs, and support a small business.

Trafalgar Square Books, the leading publisher of equestrian books and DVDs for 30 years, is a small business located on a farm in rural Vermont.

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“It’s awesome to recognize it has been 30 years since Trafalgar Square Books (www.horseandriderbooks.com) published CENTERED RIDING,” says Dr. Beth Glosten, dressage rider, certified Pilates instructor, and author of THE RIDING DOCTOR. Dr. Glosten discovered Sally Swift’s groundbreaking work when she first tried to get back into riding following medical school and the early stages of her career. Here’s a short video where she tells why CENTERED RIDING was important to her:

 

Trafalgar Square Books has been celebrating 30 years of publishing all month, as November marks the 30th anniversary of the publication of our very first horse book: CENTERED RIDING. Share your CENTERED RIDING memories and “aha” moments online and tag them #CenteredRiding30!

Trafalgar Square Books, the leading publisher of horse books and DVDs, is a small business based on a farm in rural Vermont.

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Sue Tinder is owner and manager of Tolland Falls Equestrian Center in Sedalia, Colorado, and author of THE JUMP COURSE DESIGN MANUAL. In sharing her CENTERED RIDING memory, Sue admitted still owning videocassettes—a retro CENTERED RIDING anniversary moment!

“The CENTERED RIDING videos were the first horse-related videos I ever purchased,” says Sue. “I really found them informative and the imagery Sally Swift suggested entertaining. I found her work to be a whole new way to approach body awareness and the biomechanics of riding. I still have them in my video collection—even though they have to be played on a VCR, not a DVD player!”

CRDVDsTrafalgar Square Books released the videos CENTERED RIDING 1 and CENTERED RIDING 2 in BETA and VHS formats in 1986, and they were some of the first instructional videos created specifically for horse people. Available now on DVD, the videos are still valuable educational tools and wonderful complements to Sally Swift’s two books.

 

Share your own CENTERED RIDING memories and “aha” moments online and tag them #CenteredRiding30! And remember, all CENTERED RIDING books and DVDs are 30% off, the entire month of November.

Trafalgar Square Books, the leading publisher of horse books and DVDs, is a small business based on a farm in rural Vermont.

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In recognition of the 30th Anniversary of CENTERED RIDING’s publication, dressage trainer and judge Kathy Connelly shared these thoughts about author Sally Swift and what she contributed to the horse world:

“Sally Swift was an icon in every way. As a person, she was very kind, joyful, and encouraging to all. It never mattered to Sally what level a rider was—she was equally passionate with every individual. Her work helped and sponsored legions of riders.

“I remember the years Sally was developing Centered Riding. She had such a gift for conceptualizing her ideas, and this enabled her to produce a system that was very clear and perceptible to all. How fortunate we all are to have this vision of partnership with our horses, which will be carried on for the betterment of our horses’ welfare and ensures a chance for more successful relationships with them.

“I cherished very much our friendship…and miss Sally, greatly.”

Be sure to check out the wonderful cover feature CENTERED RIDING: HOW SALLY SWIFT CHANGED THE WORLD in the December issue of EQUUS Magazine, available now wherever quality equestrian magazines are sold!

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Share your own CENTERED RIDING memories and “aha” moments online and tag them #CenteredRiding30! And remember, all CENTERED RIDING books and DVDs are 30% off, the entire month of November.

Trafalgar Square Books, the leading publisher of horse books and DVDs, is a small business based on a farm in rural Vermont.

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Jennifer Forsberg Meyer is Senior Editor at Horse&Rider Magazine and co-author of TSB’s Reining Essentials with Cowgirl Hall of Fame Inductee Sandy Collier. She wrote key articles about CENTERED RIDING and Sally Swift’s teaching in 1998 and 2000, and here shares her “Lightbulb Moment” in honor of TSB’s 30-year celebration:

 

“Oops!” My face reddened as I toppled gently forward, landing awkwardly on my horse’s neck. The mare was at a standstill, fortunately, and I was only following directions to grip with my knees while bending at the waist and attempting to touch my horse’s ears with both hands. As a lifelong rider, I knew I wasn’t supposed to grip with my knees, but until attending this Sally Swift clinic in May of 1998, I’d never understood why not.

A moment earlier, under Swift’s direction, I’d been able to grasp those ears easily while inclining securely forward. “Keep your knees relaxed, keep your lower legs under you, and your calves resting on your horse’s sides,” Sally had said, and it worked.

She reinforced this “grounding” in the saddle throughout the two days of lectures, demonstrations, and mounted and unmounted work. I had traveled from California to Brattleboro, Vermont, to attend the clinic as a journalist and participant. My article, “Getting Centered,” appeared in the December 1998 issue of Horse&Rider. I followed that with a profile of her, “Sally Swift Shows Us The Way,” in 2000.

Sally was 85 at the time of the clinic. Frail and stooped, she moved slowly, leaning heavily on two canes. The instant she opened her mouth, however, she morphed from little old lady to general-in-command—her voice and demeanor were that compelling.

One of many important things she taught us at the clinic was how to find our true center of balance, energy, and body control, deep within our abdomens. The concept is central not only to riding but also to martial arts (such as t’ai chi ch’uan), performing arts (ballet), and other sports (skiing and tennis). The ultimate lifelong learner, Sally had discovered these and other key insights—which were to revolutionize riding instruction—during what ordinary folk would call retirement.

By the clinic’s end, I couldn’t wait to get home and try Sally’s methods on my own gelding. And, just as she’d promised, her techniques meshed seamlessly with my own riding instructor’s approach. They simply gave me insights for getting tab A into slot B. I’d heard the whats of riding all my life. Now, finally, I had a line on how.

 

Share your own CENTERED RIDING memories and “aha” moments online and tag them #CenteredRiding30! And remember, all CENTERED RIDING books and DVDs are 30% off, the entire month of November.

Trafalgar Square Books, the leading publisher of horse books and DVDs, is a small business based on a farm in rural Vermont.

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Janet Foy is an FEI/USEF dressage judge, popular clinician, and author of the bestselling DRESSAGE FOR THE NOT-SO-PERFECT HORSE and new book DRESSAGE Q&A WITH JANET FOY. She shared this CENTERED RIDING “aha” moment in honor of our 30th Anniversary:

CenteredRidingTree“I still use Sally Swift’s visual of how a rider should sit—like a tall pine tree in the forest. From the waist up, sitting tall and seeking the sun, and from the waist down, stretching deeply to find the water below the surface.”

Share your own CENTERED RIDING  memories and “aha” moments online and tag them #CenteredRiding30! And remember, all CENTERED RIDING books and DVDs are 30% off, the entire month of November.

Trafalgar Square Books, the leading publisher of horse books and DVDs, is a small, privately owned company based on a farm in rural Vermont.

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We’re packed and ready to head to Springfield, Massachusetts, for EA 2015. Join TSB this Thursday-Sunday, November 12-15, at the Eastern States Exposition, for fabulous clinics from top trainers, riders, and equine experts, as well as a terrific pre-holiday shopping experience. Stop by the TSB booth #846-847 in the Better Living Center for our perennial bestsellers like CENTERED RIDING by Sally Swift (which we published 30 years ago!); brand new titles, such as THE ESSENTIAL FERGUS THE HORSE, COWBOY DRESSAGE, and THE MESSAGE FROM THE HORSE; and great show specials like contests, sales, and a limited supply of TSB exclusive Fergus the Horse coffee mugs!

We’re thrilled to be there, along with six of our authors who are featured clinicians:

Dan James, one half of the famous Double Dan Horsemanship training duo and co-author of the forthcoming LONG-REINING WITH DOUBLE DAN HORSEMANSHIP, has clinics Saturday, November 14, at 9:30 am (Mallary South) and 4:15 pm (Coliseum), plus Sunday, November 15, at 11:15 am and 3:45 pm (both in the Coliseum).

 

Phillip Dutton, five-time Olympian with two gold medals and author of MODERN EVENTING WITH PHILLIP DUTTON with Amber Heintzberger, has clinics Saturday at 9:30 am and 1:15 pm, and Sunday at 9:30 am and 1:00 pm (all in the Coliseum), plus an “Ask the Expert” session at 4:00 pm on Saturday on the Seminar Stage in the Better Living Center.

Meet Phillip Dutton in person at the TSB booth #846-847 in the Better Living Center on Sunday at 2:00 pm! He’ll be answering questions and signing books.

 

Bernie Traurig, celebrated jumper rider and horseman, and creator of THE AMERICAN HUNTER/JUMPER FORWARD RIDING SYSTEM DVD SERIES, has a talk Thursday, November 12, at 10:00 am (Equine Fundamentals Forum/Mallary South), and clinics Thursday at 1:15 pm and 5:15 pm, and Friday, November 13, at 9:30 am and 1:00 pm (all in the Coliseum), plus an “Ask the Expert” session at 5:00 pm on Friday on the Seminar Stage in the Better Living Center.

 

Susan Harris, co-creator of ANATOMY IN MOTION: THE VISIBLE HORSE and THE VISIBLE RIDER DVDS, and artist contributor to THE DRESSAGE HORSE OPTIMIZED by Jim Masterson and Coralie Hughes, is presenting Friday at 2:00 pm and 4:30 pm, Saturday at 12:30 pm and 6:00 pm (all in the Young Arena), and Saturday at 3:00 pm (Demo Ring/Mallary North).

 

Dr. Joyce Harman, veterinarian and saddle-fitting expert, and author of THE HORSE’S PAIN-FREE BACK AND SADDLE-FIT BOOK, is presenting Thursday at 2:00 pm (Seminar Stage/Better Living Center) and 5:00 pm (Demo Ring/Mallary North), and on Friday at 1:00 pm (Demo Ring/Mallary North) and 11:00 am and 6:00 pm (both on the Seminar Stage/Better Living Center). On Saturday she speaks at 10:00 am at the Equine Fundamentals Forum (Mallary South).

 

Dr. Allen Schoen, pioneer in integrative veterinary medicine and co-author of THE COMPASSIONATE EQUESTRIAN with Susan Gordon, speaks on Saturday at 1:00 pm (Demo Ring/Mallary North) and on Sunday at 10:00 am (Seminar Stage/Better Living Center).

Meet Dr. Allen Schoen in person at the TSB booth #846-847 in the Better Living Center on Saturday at 2:00 pm and Sunday at 11:00 am! He’ll be answering questions and signing books.

 

We look forward to seeing you at Equine Affaire this weekend!

 

Trafalgar Square Books, the leading publisher of horse books and DVDs, is a small, privately owned company based on a farm in rural Vermont.

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Cat Hill grew up in upstate New York on a working farm. Her earliest memory is of the day her parents got her a pony for her birthday. She grew up on that pony, which was followed by a series of Arabian show horses. In college, she started riding show hunters through the Intercollegiate Horse Show Team at the University of Geneseo. After receiving her degree, she followed her love of horses to Ireland to be a working student at Mullingar Equestrian Center, where she became barn manager before returning to the States. Hill has been a working student for a Grand Prix dressage rider, worked the Winter Equestrian Festival for a Grand Prix jumper rider, managed a AA hunter barn, and managed top eventer Mara DePuy’s barn. She now freelances as a groom, as well as teaching lower level riders in dressage, jumping, and eventing. Hill co-authored the bestselling TSB book WORLD-CLASS GROOMING FOR HORSES with Emma Ford, who runs Phillip Dutton’s barn.

“After three years of struggling with my balance and struggling to find myself and being told I would never make it in the horse world,” Hill says, remembering when she first learned of Sally Swift’s methods, “I was just about read to quit when somebody handed me [CENTERED RIDING].”

Hear what else she has to say about CENTERED RIDING as she helps us celebrate our 30th Anniversary in this short video:

 

 

Share your own CENTERED RIDING  memories and “aha” moments online and tag them #CenteredRiding30! And remember, all CENTERED RIDING books and DVDs are 30% off, the entire month of November.

Trafalgar Square Books, the leading publisher of horse books and DVDs, is a small, privately owned company based on a farm in rural Vermont.

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To help TSB celebrate the 30th Anniversary of our first horse book CENTERED RIDING, this month some of our top authors will share their Sally Swift memories and “aha” moments. Here, TSB author Linda Benedik (YOGA FOR EQUESTRIANS; YOGA & RIDING DVDS; LONGEING THE RIDER FOR THE PERFECT SEAT) tells us why CENTERED RIDING was so important to her riding, teaching, and writing:

“Baby birds in the hand. Barbershop pole as rotating spine. Energy directed as water through soft garden hose arms. Dropping a heavy, anchoring chain from the center. Legs so long that riding boots reach the ground. The iconic spruce tree and the growth it inspires.

“Creative images like these from Sally Swift’s CENTERED RIDING are indelibly committed to my memory, as well as the collective conscious of a new generation of riders and teachers. Easy to perceive and precisely descriptive, these visuals give shape to the mounted movements and feelings that riders experience. The concepts and images introduced in CENTERED RIDING illuminate the process of becoming a rider. They also provide effective tools for guiding both students and teachers in mutually positive directions, and demonstrate that ‘feel’ is more achievable and teachable than one may believe. In my (soft) eyes, Sally Swift has been an influential and groundbreaking equestrian educator. By integrating her own personal experiences in bodywork and practices from outside of the riding arena into her methods, she led by example and showed the horse world that, as riders and instructors, we are all bodyworkers.

CENTERED RIDING posed introspective questions, prompting equestrians to develop the mind-body awareness essential to riding. It also provided a direction for that awareness by offering a pathway that led to a powerful grasp of the physical language of equitation. With this deeper self-knowledge, riders could more compassionately communicate with horses. Building foundation skills in any language is necessary before conversing, and through the CENTERED RIDING system, which is clear-cut, well-illustrated, imaginative, and inspiring, Sally gave riders a tangible way to become fluent in this language. Achieving fluency in personal bodywork enabled riders to then more effectively work the body of the horse, prompting horses the world over to join together in communal rejoicing!

“As a career-based teacher of rider body language, CENTERED RIDING taught me that creating an environment conducive to eliciting feel in a rider is accomplishable.  As I reflect back on my long-lasting relationship with this book—an enduring work that continues to benefit horses and riders—I am reminded of how strongly Sally’s principles and images impacted my personal experiences, inspired me as a rider, trainer, and author, and paved the way for my own contributions to the universal equestrian library. To this day, CENTERED RIDING resonates and supports my perception that the rider’s body is a symphony of parts, and not only must a rider master each part—each instrument—but they must also conduct the symphony. While this may sound like a monumental task, CENTERED RIDING offers manageable steps toward developing this dexterity and provides coherent tools for connecting and conversing with horses.

“My gratitude to Sally for these teaching essentials is immeasurable, and I am honored to have the opportunity to express my appreciation during this 30th year anniversary celebration.”

 

Share your own CENTERED RIDING  memories and “aha” moments online and tag them #CenteredRiding30! And remember, all CENTERED RIDING books and DVDs are 30% off, the entire month of November.

 

Trafalgar Square Books, the leading publisher of horse books and DVDs, is a small, privately owned company based on a farm in rural Vermont.

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