I'm delighted to launch the first Eqco guest blog. Gee from Wonderhorse Dressage kicks us off with a fantastic post written in her inimitable signature style. Thank you, Georgie and enjoy!
For those of you who don't know already, I'm Gee from Wonderhorse Dressage (shameless plug, sorry Jess!) and I'm super excited to bring you the very first in the series of guest blogs from Eqco!
So all week this week I've been writing about myself, my horse and all the things I love about Eqco. I wrote about how clever Jess is, how dedicated she is to customer service and how her products unquestionably speak for themselves. I also wrote about what products I have from Eqco and those I hope to have in the future. But before I go into all that...
Last week the equestrian world lost one of its most influential figures. I still can't believe I'm writing the words that only last week, after a short battle with illness, we said goodbye to our beloved Tim Stockdale, although I doubt this is news to anyone reading this blog. His loss is so very tragic and has hit the equestrian community like a runaway train, it's affected every one of us so very deeply that I cannot begin to imagine how his family and friends feel right now.
This got me thinking, Tim was so much more than an incredibly talented horseman (as if that wasn't enough), I've seen so many posts and photos this week from all number of riders and trainers alike, it seems so many people had the chance to meet this wonderful man, to talk with him, train with him, take selfies with him! Tim Stockdale had time for everyone and isn't that the most humbling and humanizing trait to have?
It made me think about our horsey heroes, who we look up to and aspire to be like and whilst we have so many riders and trainers at the top to take advice and inspiration from, I can't help but feel that it's so very important to invest time in being yourself. Tim was unequivocally himself. Don't get me wrong, having a horsey hero is wonderful especially when so many are so willing to help us better our riding and bond with our horses, but don't forget 'the little people'. Tim always had time for 'normal' people, to talk about training, to laugh about thrills and spills and to listen to us mad horsey girls talk about our four-legged friends. Isn't that just something very special? So maybe take a little time to make your best friend your horsey hero for a day, or someone at your stables or someone you see working their butt off at a show, because supporting the people around you creates something magical.
My point is this: people in all walks of life are very quick to pull each other down, to criticise and make mean comments, but if someone like Tim Stockdale can take the time to make people feel important and like they can do anything, then so can any one of us! Kindness and support cost nothing but in return creates a feeling that is priceless. So perhaps next time you see someone ride a good centre line or jump a crosspole for the first time, take the time to tell them they're awesome…you have no idea how it will make that person feel, you might just make their day or even their year! We're all capable of making people feel special.
I hope Tim's family see the posts and the love that is being shared on social media and that they are proud of the wonderful man that he was. He really will never be forgotten.
So whilst we're on the subject of supporting others, I really do believe in supporting friends and small businesses and with that in mind, I'd like to talk to you all about two of my favourite Eqco purchases. Let's face it, Tpony's wardrobe is full of Eqco goodies but I just cannot help but have a favourite...or two!
My first product is probably everyone's favourite and the most famous Eqco accessory. Bum warmers! I have had MANY bum warmers from Jess, because Tpony likes to grow so much he's had a new one every year so far (and he's just been measured up this week for his 2018/19 model). Jess offers so many options for bum warmers and I don't just mean colour combos! There are lightweight/ mesh sheets for summer riding and keeping those pesky flies away, these come in hi-viz colours and bindings for safe summer hacking as well as your more standard colours. If hi-viz is your thing then you can also get a neon sheet that's waterproof and can come with an array of bindings and reflective strips with tail flaps as an option too.
Next is my winter must-have, the Doesitall rug. The material is similar to a big name competitor but slightly lighter weight. It's beautifully warm yet breathable and is super for wicking away sweat and preventing overheating. There are so many base colours to choose from and an entire rainbow of pipings, bindings and would you believe it... REAL CRYSTALS are an option for the bling obsessed! Jess also offers a superb embroidery service at a really reasonable price to make your sheets extra special for home or competition. My winter must-have has a new partner in crime... the matching waterproof top sheet! Now this is the infamous bum warmer but in a lightweight waterproof material that can be worn as it is or teamed up with your Doesitall for those really cold and wet days. Of course you can have yours in any colour combination you want, but I'm totally obsessed with the matching pairs of Doesitall and waterproof toppers I've been seeing pop up on Insta the last few weeks. So obsessed in fact I've just ordered Tpony a matching set for Christmas! These bum warmers are so versatile, super smart and insanely hard wearing. They wash and wear so well and never look out of place at the fanciest of shows. They are really easy to take on and off whilst on board as you can attach the straps to your girth straps, or if you have a monoflap saddle Jess cam make them a little longer to attach to your stirrup leathers. As I said before, the sheets are nice and lightweight whilst still being warm, but still heavy enough to sit well during exercise, they don't flap around or slip!
Are you convinced yet? Seriously, they really are THAT good.
Now my other Eqco must-have is perhaps less widely known! Bandage pads! Jess makes these so so well. I love to bandage, I know it's not everyone's cup of tea for various reasons but I think one thing everyone can agree on is that tension needs to be even and there must be room for airflow. This is where the bandage pads come in. The Eqco pads are well padded and maintain their shape nicely but mould to the leg really well too. They provide a larger surface area which helps to keep the tension from bandages even and prevent over tightening. They are lined with a gorgeous bamboo towelling which keeps legs dry and the padding allows superb airflow to prevent overheating. I use these pads in all weathers, even in that hot summer we've just had and have not once finished a session with hot or sweaty legs. As always, Eqco provides the most incredible customer service, there are so many colours to choose from and they can be made in whatever size you need to get the perfect fit for your horse! I love these so much I have a set in grey, pink, turquoise and royal too... oops!
For those of you who've made it this far, thanks so much for reading my guest blog post, I hope it's been interesting and has shown you all just how useful, functional and downright incredible Eqco products are!
Stay tuned for my next update when our new winter bum combo arrives! I'm planning a little vlog to show you just how amazing they are in the flesh. I also have some exciting news to share about some new products in the pipeline to keep us horsey girls organised both at home and at competitions!
Peace out Eqco-ettes ♡