THE Swan Valley will be the setting for first of three inaugural encouragement shows in equestrian vaulting for WA.
The internationally competitive sport dates back to Roman times and is described as ‘gymnastics and dance on horseback’ by the Equestrian Vaulting Australia.
Vaulters perform compulsory and freestyle moves to music individually, in pairs or in squad on a horse in canter or walking.
Coach Kay Fowler, of Ripplebrook Equestrian Vaulting Academy, said the shows would provide opportunities for recreational and competitive riders of all ages and abilities.
There will be a novelty event for riders aged under six.
“Equestrian vaulting combines gymnastics and dance in harmony on the back of a moving horse,” Ms Fowler said.
“Riders develop the skills of strength, balance, teamwork, self-esteem, horsemanship and friendship.”
Ripplebrook opened in the valley two years ago.
Coaches travel throughout the state with horses to demonstrate the performance sport to horse and pony clubs.
Ms Fowler said the academy began as a way to give WA vaulters opportunities to expand their knowledge and skills.
“Our members enjoy the opportunity to train regularly, attend competitions in WA and nationally, and participate in clinics with Australian and international coaches,” she said.
Academy-trained riders have competed interstate for the past five years in national vaulting championships.
The first encouragement show will be held on Saturday, July 23, with dates for other shows to follow shortly.
Ms Fowler also coaches for Riding for the Disabled Association WA.
She said equestrian vaulting was suitable for people living with a disability or physical injury because the skills required could be adapted.
For more, call Kay on 9296 2631 or visit the academy’s Facebook page.