William Micklem's Blog (50)




Dublin show at the Royal Dublin Society in Ballsbridge is the centrepiece and driving force for many in the Irish Equestrian community. It is so dominant in our culture that people just talk about it as ‘the horse show’, despite the fact that there are…


Added by William Micklem on August 8, 2010 at 3:00am — 8 Comments



After the dressage my home bred hero Mandiba leads the World Cup 3* event at Rebecca Farms in Montana....congratulations to Karen O'Connor and all her team....while his full brother High Kingdom, with Zara Phillips aboard, is in 12th place after the dressage in the Advanced division at Aston Le Walls in England and like his brother goes cross country today. Their half brother Tredstep…


Added by William Micklem on July 24, 2010 at 3:30am — 5 Comments

William Micklem offers TEN LITTLE BEAUTIES

So sad to hear that Oki Doki is no longer with us….who needs cheering up? The great thing about age is the ability to enjoy the little equine things that possibly were once hidden by the pursuit of rosettes in earlier days:…


Added by William Micklem on July 23, 2010 at 4:00am — 2 Comments

SENSE & NONSENSE says William Micklem

Happy children and happy summer riding days. Full of friendship and partnership with both their ponies and other riders. How lucky these young riders are as long as they come under the wing of a good coach. A coach who fully understands that what children learn first tends to stay with them, just as with a young horse. So our young riders and young coaches need excellent coaches. They don’t need to be high-level coaches of elite performers,…


Added by William Micklem on July 17, 2010 at 7:30am — 7 Comments

Start Horse Jumping Safely

I never cease to be amazed about the 'S' word. A word that is so very powerful and very important in all areas of training. A word that allows accelerated progress and increased safety. The word of course is SIMPLICITY…..and contrary to what many say it is not that difficult to achieve, at least to a large extent. Just reject the…


Added by William Micklem on July 2, 2010 at 4:00am — 2 Comments

A PROD UCT OF IGNORANCE says William Micklem

Last week I mentioned about the possible use of electric cattle prods on horses in USA rodeo shows. Over the next two days an extraordinary 27 people e-mailed to assure me that this practise no longer took place. I was heartened but not convinced. Then Barnmice received an e-mail from the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association (PRCA) with an official statement entitled PRCA Livestock Welfare Statement – Electric Cattle Prod:

“PRCA rules allow for the use of a livestock prod as…


Added by William Micklem on June 26, 2010 at 4:00pm — 4 Comments

FIND THE TIGER WITHIN US says William Micklem

What do you do when a horse sport different from your own uses cruel methods? Be grateful that your own sport is humane and clean and turn a blind eye or do something about it?

Of course what constitutes cruelty is often debatable. In my opinion the isolation of horses in single cells with minimum activity is cruelty, and I am not alone in having concerns about the mental abuse of horses in bad dressage, while others think racing over…


Added by William Micklem on June 18, 2010 at 3:30am — 14 Comments

LEAPING TO NEW HEIGHTS with William Micklem


Should you jump young horses? How young can they be to jump? Here is my home bred High Kingdom jumping a 1.30m oxer as a 3 yo. It is a glorious sight:…


Added by William Micklem on June 11, 2010 at 4:30am — 3 Comments

William Micklem says IT’S WORTH THE WAIT

There is no doubt that early intervention is the efficient way to tackle learning difficulties and weaknesses. To nip a problem in the bud leads to both accelerated progress and happier students. This applies to both mental and physical challenges and to both humans and horses. Any behaviour or way of going that is undesirable is much more difficult and time consuming to change if it has become habitual.…


Added by William Micklem on June 4, 2010 at 12:30pm — 18 Comments

William Micklem says FREE THE BACK



Jack le…


Added by William Micklem on May 28, 2010 at 4:00am — 5 Comments

GOING ROUND IN CIRCLES with William Micklem

Every exercise comes from a circle, even riding on a straight line. Riding a horse truly straight in a straight line is one of the most difficult but important things we aim to achieve in…


Added by William Micklem on May 21, 2010 at 4:00am — 2 Comments



I have a new challenge and a new partner. A six year old gelding who is not very happy. I use the word ‘challenge’ deliberately, not because I am thinking of going into battle but because it focuses my mind on what I need to do in a positive way. ‘Challenge’ is an effective word in the same way that ‘problem’ is not effective. Obviously it is so much more positive and…


Added by William Micklem on May 14, 2010 at 4:00am — 3 Comments

HAVE NO REGRETS says William Micklem

My apologies for silence over the past few weeks. My father-in-law died as the result of injuries sustained in an air crash and the energy and inspiration has been drained from our family…..but it will come back. We will remember and feed off his memory and huge strengths. He was a great role-model, particularly in the way he led both his…


Added by William Micklem on May 7, 2010 at 4:00am — 5 Comments

A POWERFUL PARTNERSHIP – Life & seizing life

A friend of mine died recently….before his time as they say….

but telling you about him is a joyful and hugely positive task:…


Added by William Micklem on April 2, 2010 at 4:00am — 2 Comments

Best of William Micklem - 13 - NAMING AND SHAMING




Marengo with Napoleon




Added by William Micklem on March 26, 2010 at 4:00am — 8 Comments

William Micklem praises a RACING CERTAINTY



Bert de Nemethy



Added by William Micklem on March 19, 2010 at 5:00am — 1 Comment

Best of William Micklem - 12 - AT LAST A HIGH INTEREST INVESTMENT

I would always support investing in our coaches because the pay off is so great as they influence so many hundreds of riders over their lifetime. I agree with Sebastian Coe, the Olympic 800m and 1,500m medalist and now head of the 2012 London Olympics, that more money should go to

coaching and coaches rather than to individual performers…


Added by William Micklem on March 12, 2010 at 4:00am — 2 Comments

Best of William Micklem - 11 - FEAR AND THE ‘MAGGOT IN THE MIND'

Never underestimate the power of the mind, not only as a power for good but also as a negative power that can subconsciously restrict your activities and achievements. Fear is often connected to a negative attitude. There are two…


Added by William Micklem on March 5, 2010 at 4:00am — 5 Comments

Best of William Micklem - 10 - FEARS CAN BE CONQUERED

Why do we not talk more about fear, when fear is a common emotion in cross country riders? There is probably no sane person who is totally fearless and everyone has his or her limits. Even a Grand Prix racing car driver, who is brave enough to…


Added by William Micklem on February 26, 2010 at 4:00am — No Comments

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