April 20 - our annual Summer Horse/Pony Camp issue
Dressage Clinic with Alex du Celliee Muller
Massar Stables, Arlington, Tenn., hosted a dressage clinic with Alex du Celliee Muller on February 18-19, 2017. Alex was one of the riders at the USDF FEI Level Trainers Conference in Wellington, Fla. this year (see MSHR February 2017 issue). She and her horse Rumba were chosen to be a demonstration pair and had an opportunity to work with Lilo Fore at the conference. Massar also hosted a clinic with Alex in January (28-30) just after the Florida conference.
Alex commented about the conference: “The USDF clinic was held in conjunction with the judges’ forum this year, which is a little different than it has been in the past. It was not so much a clinic this year. Lilo did work with me on some aspects of my riding. Then we rode tests for the judges to critique and score.”
Alex du Celliee Muller is the owner and trainer at River City Training Stable, in Benton, Arkansas, just outside of Little Rock.She’s been riding practically her whole life, and grew up showing Dressage and Eventing in California. When she was 14 years old, she leased a dressage schoolmaster and her riding interests moved more towards Dressage. She moved to Arkansas in 2011, where she worked for two years in a public school in eastern Arkansas with Teach for America. She moved to the Little Rock area in 2013 to teach and train horses full time.
Alex is a United States Pony Clubs graduate “A Dressage,” a USPC National Examiner, and a USDF Bronze and Silver Medalist.
Alex has two main horses she’s competing at present. Rumba is a ten-year-old Oldenburg whom she bought at about six months old. She’s trained him and he is now competing at Prix St. Georges level. Her other horse is Hypnos, a five-year-old Dutch Warmblood, whom she imported in October 2015.
She has several other horses at her barn that she is training – all of whom were purchased from the Bastrop (Louisiana) Kill Pen. She says that folks do take a risk buying horses there. You can’t be sure that the horse you saw on facebook will still be there once you get there, and many are too malnourished or too sick to ride. She says they’re not thin, but may be ill or, usually, are stressed. She was successful with the horses she bought. She has a Quarter Horse, who obviously has some pleasure training. She has an Appaloosa/POA, around 15h, who was probably a public trail ride horse. Her absolutely best beginner lesson pony is a 11.3h pony, who recently gave a 90-year-old lady a birthday ride! Alex says, “This pony came that perfect!” She has a Paint horse and a Paint pony. Two of the horses will remain at her barn as lesson ponies and the others will be for sale once she finishes their training.
Most of her present students are adult (around 20) and she has about 7-8 young riders. She teaches both dressage and eventing, and most of the sale horses she events.
She works with her students, both at home and in clinics, helping them better understand their own horses and how to better communicate with them. She helps them find a sense of team work with their horse and, of course, tailors the training and teaching to the specific needs of each horse. “I guess position and biomechanics are my two main foci,” she said, “helping the riders to get their body to work properly and in the correct position to be better able to communicate with their horse.”
Alex still rides in both eventing and dressage. She plans to get Rumba to Intermediaire I by Fall and to do the CDI next winter in Florida.
For more information about Alex and River City Training Stable, visit https://www.rivercitytrainingstable.com/ and on facebook.
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