Annette Willson

Annette Willson the Author of  “Applied Posture Riding”

DSC 0121 Hi, welcome and thank you for reading my page.

So Who Is Annette Willson?

I was an elite event rider, I am a Qualified Physiotherapist with a Masters Degree and I am a Pilates Teacher. My speciality is pain management and injury rehabilitation. My expertise is in Horse Rider Biomechanics. I ride, I train my own horses and I am a rider coach, as well as an instructor.

I am aged, I am experienced, I am educated but most of all I love my horses and I love training riders to achieve their dreams. I am old enough to be experienced and young enough to pass it on.

I have worked as a Physiotherapist for 35 years; I am still practising in private practice in Clare, SA.

I have been a rider all my life developing my talent through pony club and open competition. I won the individual state championships in eventing in South Australia 5 times in a row on 5 different horses all trained from racing to competition level by me. I competed at the national championships as a junior and as senior for the state of South Australia. I received my “A” certificate in Pony Club at the age of 21. This certificate has only been awarded to 4 riders in South Australia.

I won the state dressage championships 3 times in a row.

Moving into senior open competition required more money and more support. I managed to attend university for 4 years, pass, get a job and continue to compete at a moderate level and gained a spot on the Olympic training squad. I remained on this squad for 3 years until my top horse dropped dead from colic. I struggled with severe back pain having ruptured 2 discs in my lower back and a lack of time and funds. My specialist told me to give up riding, never get on a horse again and live a sedentary life. I didn't of course and went

I visited a  specialist who told me to give up riding, never get on a horse again and live a sedentary life. I didn't of course and went on to ride to a high level, simply by keeping my core strong and being careful.

More injuries bad news followed, I broke my leg, reinjured my back and was quite incapacitated.This was a devastating time for me. Along with injuries I also became a single mother with three boys, the youngest has a disability, requiring a lot of care. I worked my own business and struggled to continue riding.  I bought and trained my own horses but didn’t get back to high-level competition again.

I started training riders and straight away identified a huge gap in rider training. None of them had any balance! Many had pain and were time poor, money poor and support poor. I seemed to have a similar story to everyone else out there. Very few riders do it easy, we only think they do. The comments I got when I was riding (how do you sit so still etc) and a simple light globe moment when at Equitana, inspired me to write my Applied Posture Riding Program.

I was watching Anky give a lesson at Equitana. The horse was fabulous but the rider could not ride this talented horse. No matter what she said the rider could not do it. Her u=instruction was all about the horse and his movement, paces and self-carriage. It didn't matter what she said the rider could not apply the aids correctly because she didn't have the strength or the balance or the skill. 

 Anky went to say she could train any horse, she still did not mention the rider!…I could see many things i could have got up and said that would have made a huge difference to the lesson, I was looking at the rider's posture.I knew then I could train any, every rider.

I knew then I could train any and  I hope every rider.

I have skills a riding instructor does not have; I also have skills as a top rider.

This is a big call. I will continue to train any rider who will listen to me.

My life has settled into work, family, and horses. I have my own Physiotherapy practice, I teach Pilates in my work and I teach it to horse riders. I run Applied Posture Riding workshops and just love it. My children are adults now; I still care for my youngest son. I still ride and compete at a lower level, because it is my passion. I practice my own exercises every day. These exercises keep me fit strong and flexible to ride.

The writing of the book my book “Applied Posture Riding” developed over a few years due to my own experience and due to the demand by riders asking the questions.

It has become very popular around the world particularly for prelim and riders recovering from injury. If you want more information and to purchase this unique program go to the home page.

I certainly hope and encourage top riders to follow and look at how their posture and ageing body affects their riding.

I know I can teach riders to ride well. I hope you are one of them.

My Credentials are as listed

  • Physiotherapist
  • Bachelor Applied Science Physiotherapy
  • Masters Degree Physiotherapy
  • Diploma of Nutrition
  • Rider Biomechanics Specialist
  • Elite Competitor (Retired) and Horse Trainer
  • Specialist Horse Rider Trainer
  • Pilate’s Trainer and Educator

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