HQ caught up with Anel Pelser, Riding Instructor, to find out about her services:
HQ: As a freelance instructor, do you specialise in a specific discipline or do you teach across a range of disciplines?
I teach showjumping, dressage, equitation, showing, eventing, EETO, Western Riding and have also done Saddle Seat. I have successfully produced riders in all above disciplines to receive the provincial colours.
HQ: Do you teach beginners as well as more advanced riders? Or do you prefer to teach at a specific level?
I teach from little kids aged 7 all the way through to adults, and from complete beginners to graded riders. My current highest-level riders are in Pony Rider Medium dressage, Junior Elem Med, and Adult Elementary. I have previously produced Pony Rider CA show jumpers, Junior 1.10m, Adult 1.10 and Junior Open Equitation competitors.
HQ: How long have you been teaching? And how long have you been interested in horses?
I was born with an intense interest and love for horses and got my first horse when I was 7 yrs old – a TB off the track, which I had to school up myself. I have been teaching for the past 20 years. After school I completed my Diploma in Equine Science.
HQ: What made you want to teach?
I saw how everyone had the desire to progress and that they were battling with a variety of obstacles, which were holding them back in their progress. The very best part of teaching is seeing how a horse and rider transform. The rider gains a better knowledge and understanding and the horse changes completely in shape. Because of my background I can help with nutritional advice, rehab advice and assist a fearful rider in gaining confidence and enjoying their horse.
HQ: How would you describe your lessons?
I prefer to do private lessons, one on one, but often do combine to make groups of two or three riders as horses and riders have to be used to other riders and horses in the arena at shows. I structure each lesson to the need of that specific horse/rider combo. Horses and people are not the same everyday, and I always start with a lesson plan but it is often necessary to adjust, as the horse might be stiff or the rider struggling with a specific movement. I often request that my riders are a bit early, as I like them to walk their horses for at least 10/15min before lessons to warm up properly on their own. Cooling down is also vital in keeping the horses healthy and happy
HQ: Where do you teach? How far are you prepared to travel?
I teach mostly in Pretoria area, but will travel to Rustenburg etc to do day clinics if there are enough riders to justify the costs.
HQ: Do you have your own horse? Tell us about him/her?
I have a WB Stallion that I bred myself – Franc-Swella’s Beau Rieve (Legacy Bonheur/Beau Veneur/Weltmeyer). I have just upgraded him to Medium. He has the most amazing temperament and I often let my pupils ride him to feel how movements should be ridden. Bibi has taught me soooo much and I will be forever grateful to him for being so forgiving. He came 3rd in the 2020 SA Mini Derby, which was a tremendously proud moment. I also have a second gelding, Franc-Swella’s Da Vinci (Delgado/Escapade/Atilla/Maritza), who is also homebred. He has now gone up to Elementary and is quite a character. He is very playful under saddle and loves being silly.
HQ: Tell us about your own riding career. Do you compete?
I have ridden all my life. I started at 7 years old at Equestrian Int. in Boksburg when it was still owned by John and Sue Dennison. I started jumping with Lester Saunders when I went to High School. As my parents were not very supportive of my riding, I started work riding to pay for my lessons. I stopped competing for a while as I was dedicated to my pupils, and did not have time to ride my own horses. At this time I started with a small stud, attempting to breed myself a superstar. I currently ride Medium with Bibi and Elementary with Da Vinci. I also produce clients’ horses/ponies for them up the grades. I currently ride with Clare Bailes and Niall Quirk.
HQ: Are you teaching at the moment? How did you keep yourself busy during lockdown?
I’m definitely teaching again.
In lockdown I started my day working my own horses and focusing on weak points that we could work on. I have 5 horses that I am currently schooling. I had lessons with Niall just before the lock down and he gave me some very good advice on what to work on. I bake, quite a bit as well so that was nice during lockdown. My son is on his break from overseas and he missed SA food, so I decided to fatten him up over lockdown. I also did cross stitch projects, packed out and sorted my tack room. Then in the afternoons, we, as a family, got down and exercised. We had to get creative, but the garage turned out to be a good source of items to use as weights. While exercise and running the same track around the house for many laps it got me thinking about how our horses must feel going around the same area! I’m trying to remember that in my own training with my horses and pupils now.
To book lessons contact Anel:
ANEL PELSER firstname.lastname@example.org