About Us

Cynthia Adams, Trainer and EC Level 1 Instructor

Education and Experience

I first became involved in horses in 1988 and began teaching and training dressage around 1997.

I’ve taken the 2 year Equine Science Program (English Major) as well as the 1 year CEF Western Coaching Program at the Olds College.  I teach both English and Western students, but my passion is Dressage.

In the 2014 / 2015 school year, I was invited to be a substitute teacher for the English Equine Science majors (Coaching & Horsemanship) at Olds College.  I had the pleasure of teaching the dressage portion of the program for 2 semesters while the regular instructor was away.

Some of the many Instructors and clinicians I’ve had the pleasure of learning from include; Ellen Bontje (Olympic Silver Medalist), Cindy Ishoy (Olympic Bronze Medalist), Olympian David Marcus & Lindsey Stroh (Grand Prix Rider).   Without a doubt, the person who has influenced me the most in dressage is Jane Savoie.  I find I refer to her the most in my teaching of my students.  Jane Savoie has coached at three Olympic games.  Been a member of the US Equestrian Team.  And the Reserve Rider for the Bronze medal winning Olympic Dressage team in Barcelona.

In the past, I’ve had the great joy of riding Grand Prix dressage.  I have personally trained client horses up to the Prix St. Georges level and successfully competed from 1st level up to 4th level … winning championships at each level (scores up to 73.684% at Gold Rated Dressage Shows) with horses in training.

I’ve trained many young horses.  Young horses are extremely quick learners and owners are often astonished at how fast they progress.  My main goal is to produce a horse that is relaxed and obedient to the aids in the saddle AND on the ground.

My students range from beginner (Western and English) to advanced.  Several of my students are instructors themselves.    My most advanced dressage student successfully showed at 3rd level and started schooling 4th.   Some of my students are jumper orientated, who take dressage lessons to help improve their flatwork for jumping.

Straightness Training

In 2017, I decided to enroll in Marijke de Jong’s “Straightness Training” Mastery program.  “Straightness Training” addresses the horse’s natural asymmetry and is good for all horses of all disciplines.    By nature all horses are naturally crooked.  Just like people, horses are left or right handed (both in the front legs and the hind legs), they have a stiff side and a hollow side and naturally carry more weight on their front legs (with one front leg carrying more weight than the other).     By addressing the horse’s natural crookedness, we can reduce the risk of injury, improve the horse’s balance (both physically and mentally) and greatly improve the horse’s rideability for all disciplines.

Somatics, Pilates and Centered Riding

For those that struggle to keep their position in the saddle, I have begun to incorporate somatics, pilates and centered riding into my lessons.  The changes in people’s bodies can be amazing.

As we age and have injuries, our bodies don’t function quite they way they did when we were younger.  Each time we have an injury, our body develops an incorrect muscle pattern.  Once the injured area heals, our bodies sometimes “forget” to go back to the correct muscle patterns.  Over time, we may develop many incorrect patterns.  Eventually, activities that were once easy, become a struggle.   If this sounds familiar to you, then somatics may help!  Somatics has  changed my life!!   Through Somatics and Pilates, I have a much better understanding of muscle patterns and have noticed a huge difference in myself as well as my students.

I’ve also come to really appreciate Sally Swift’s Centered Riding, which is helpful for all riding disciplines.   Not only does a centered position allow for better communication between horse and rider, it also encourages correct alignment … which is super important for longevity!   Correct alignment and centering, will reduce the chances of back injuries from the repetitive stress  of riding.

As a rider who has struggled with too many traumatic injuries (including breaking my back as well as tearing some major muscle groups to list just a few), I have suffered a lot of back and sciatic pain … with troubles walking some days.  I have found Somatics super helpful in restoring correct function to my muscles (which has allowed me to continue riding).  Without somatics (and Pilates), I would have had to quit riding in early 2016.   Therefore, I have become a huge fan of Somatics, Pilates and Centered Riding.

Examples of horses I've trained

WALLPULLICELLA (nickname CELLA) schooling 4th level (April 2014) and Prix St. Georges (Oct 2014)

CELLA doing liberty work (no halter).  Cella was a very distracted and excitable mare that didn’t like her face being touched.  This worked helped her focus and calm down tremendously. (Dec 2013)

CELLA schooling 4th level (April 2014)

LEO – learning long reining to help improve collection and develop half steps (piaffe) as well as very collected Canter.  1st time outside so he was a bit distracted. (April 2016)

LEO learning Passage (Dec 2015)

3 year old gelding with approximately 2 months under saddle.  I am a firm believe in quality ground work.  Please note this colt had extensive ground work done prior to mounting, which allowed the progress under saddle to be quick. (Oct 2013)

BARCELONA:  In-Hand Straightness Training at walk and trot.  First time doing movements in trot  (April 2017)

DOMINIQUE –  long lining to help develop straightness, balance and collection.  Working canter pirouette and half steps/piaffe steps.   Approximately  50 sessions.  Dominique is 9 months pregnant at the time of this video.  Last long reining session before going on maternity leave. (April 2017)

CELLA learning piaffe in hand

Warmbloods

In 2000, I started breeding Warmbloods for the English Disciplines and am happy with some of the beautiful foals that have resulted.

Our breeding program has included some wonderful stallions such as Jazz, Farrington, Freestyle, Chico’s Boy & Quaterback to list a few.

Quantum Salto – 2017 Colt

An example of our breeding program includes Quantum Salto and Quazar Stellar.   Both foals are sired by the stallion Quaterback and out of our mare Dominique III (x Chico’s Boy).

Both Quazar and Quantum represent the type of warmblood we would like to continue breeding … athletic, handsome and versatile.   We expect wonderful things from both boys and can’t wait to see them competing in the future.

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Quazar Stellar – 2016 Colt

 

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Quaterback – sire to ‘Quantum Salto’ and “Quazar Stellar’

Videos of Quantum Salto

Videos of Quazar Stellar and his mom (Dominique III)

Throughout the years, we have had many mares and foals; however, after 11 years we decided that one horse was enough (well sort of, lol).  In 2011, I dropped down to only one horse (my 2011 filly Dominique).  After a 4 year break, I decided to breed Dominique to Quaterback in hopes of getting a filly (and so the addiction continues!!! lol).  Originally, I was only going to breed Dominique until she produced a filly for me.  However, in 2016 she produced a lovely colt (Quazar Stellar).  And another colt (Quantum Salto) in 2017.  Currently, Dominique is back in foal to Quaterback for a 2018 foal.  Through ultrasound, the fetus looks like another colt … its starting to look like the breeding gods want me to keep breeding, lol.    If the vet is correct and the foal turns out to be another boy, he will be available for sale.

Dominique III

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Dominique (Quazar’s dam) was one of our foals from 2011.   As a four year old, Dominique was Reserve Champion Mare at the 2015 CWHBA Breeders show – Alberta Chapter.  She received a premium inspection score.

Dominique is sired by Chico’s Boy … Champion Stallion of the 2002 Holstein licensing.   He has proved to be one of the few multi-talent sires in present day breeding.  Consistently passing excellent gaits, rideability and jumping ability to his progeny.

Chico’s Boy won tests for young riding and young dressage horses, was nominated for the Bundeschampionat for riding horses and did an excellent job in all areas at his 30-day test in Schlieckau. In 2006 he won the 70-day test in Neustadt/Dosse as well with top scores for rideability (8.88) and his ability to jump (9.03).

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Chico’s Boy – Dominique’s Sire

Sierra Springs

Sierra Springs (Dominique’s dam) was one of our foals from 2007 (by the Holsteiner stallion Silberpfeil) .

  • She was Grand Champion Young Horse & 1st Place Futurity winner as a foal (2007 CWHBA Southern Alberta)
  • In 2011, she was awarded a premium at her CWHBA inspection
  • In 2012, she was pictured in the January 2012 edition of Canadian Horse Journal … representing the Canadian Warmblood breed (picture to the right)

Steelbars Monique

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My first ever warmblood!      I purchased Monique in 1999 as a foal.  Monique was my favorite broodmare of all times.  She had a huge heart and always came galloping to the fence when she saw any member of my family.  She was a super mother for us.  She had a lot of sentimental value to me as I rode both her parents and later owned her mother.  Monique produced 5 foals for us and consistently produced foals that won on line at breed shows.  Some of her foals went on to be dressage champions and a few found homes as hunter/jumpers.      Monique is Dominique’s grandmother (Quazar’s Great Grandmother).   At 9 years of age, Monique received a premium score at her CWHBA inspection and was the 2008 Reserve Champion Mare (CWHBA Southern Alberta Show).