Our clients love the training they receive on equine simulators!
"It is just AMAZING.
After living with multiple sclerosis for more than thirty years I was optimistic that the Equine Simulator, Dante Maximus, would be helpful in mitigating my hip pain.
Imagine my surprise when I gained so much more.
My previous, constant pain is gone. The mobility in my left hand, arm, leg and ankle
has been dramatically improved.
After only eight 30 minute rides on the Simulator, I found myself being able to wash my
own hair with both hands for the first time in ten years!
Now, 5 months later, riding twice a week, my overall physical strength, stamina and ability to walk has dramatically improved.
Initially, it was all I could do to stay on the "horse" as it moved. I can now keep my balance, and coordinate both hands to pick up, hold, and maintain appropriate tension on the reins as Dante Maximus walks, trots or canters.
The three big screens in front of the simulator interact as I ride. They constantly show my exact posture, balance, and how my hands are holding the reins. I can steer the "horse", and adjust the speed accordingly as I experience a virtual ride.
Barbro Ask-Upmark, the instructor and owner of the simulator, stands next to me at all times. She is constantly evaluating and encouraging, helping me to maintain my focus and precision.
It is my hope that more MS patients like myself, can be made aware of this incredible machine.
My life is so much better now; I am exercising, my mobility continues to improve, and I am pain free!"
~Jackie Kerr, PhD
"I was pleasantly surprised how realistic the ride was. The Riding Simulator is an invaluable tool. It helps the rider to learn correct seat and position, timing of the aids, even how and when to make half halts. The ‘horse’ helps by giving the rider the correct feel in self carriage, the responsiveness and the rhythm that is only achieved by the well trained dressage horse.”
~Chairman of the International Dressage Trainers Club, Board Member of the FEI Dressage Committee and Dressage Judges Supervisory Panel
"I found it very helpful to ride the Dressage Simulator. Working through some movements on “Luke” and with Barbro assisting me, I could concentrate on myself and what I was doing, instead of having to train my horse at the same time. That gave me the tools to perform the movement correctly and sort out what I really do while riding certain movements. I can recommend lessons on Luke to anyone that wants to improve their riding and wants to understand how they affect the horse while riding.”
~Ulla Hakanson, six-time Olympic rider for the Swedish team, two-time bronze medalis
"This thing has a personality. It really responds like a real horse!”
~Dr. Linda Lowenstine, Veterinary Professor at UC Davis, CA
"It really lets you focus on the instruction.”
"I have been reluctant to get on a horse again after a riding related back injury. Lessons on the Simulator have restored my confidence and I intend to resume riding again.”
"The 3 things I learned: 1) Reverse the movement of my hands during sitting trot so I give when I used to take, and take when I used to give – then my movement supports my horse’s movement instead of getting in his way. 2) My left leg wasn’t rotated inward as much as my right leg; now I check that my left leg is turned inward from the hip so its rotation matches my right leg and my aids are more even and effective. 3) I thought my horse was hanging on my left rein, but I was the one doing the hanging; now I use half halts and forward seat & leg aids to keep the contact active and honest. Thanks Barbro!!”
~Nan Meek, FEI rider and journalist
"It is beyond astonishing how much difference working with you on the Simulator has made for me. I believe if my horse could talk he would say, ‘Oh wow, I don’t know what happened but this is sooo much better!”
"It allowed me to focus solely on my influence on the horse without concerning myself with his issues. In the first lesson, it was undeniably clear how I have been getting in my horse’s way in regard to our lateral work. I was collapsing my hip, and blocking him with my hand. The following sessions allowed me to retrain my muscles and my conditioned mental response through repetition until it became natural. Instant feedback at its best! Barbro provides just the right amount of instruction and ‘Luke’ provides the correction and validation. A great addition to my training toolbox.”
~Elise Cutini of Monte Sereno