Shelly Harris has become the first trainer in Wales to achieve the UKCC level 3 specification, a huge accolade for dressage riders. The Carmarthen native's latest achievement means that she is now the first British accredited trainer in Wales and she hopes that her expertise will help to develop the next generation of riders.
Tivy-Side Advertiser reported that Ms Harris travels the length and breadth of the country teaching clients the very basics of dressage right through to the more challenging aspects of the discipline. While she has ridden at Inter I level she is now focusing on developing younger riders to compete in the Grand Prix. She took the decision to bow out of competitions to concentrate on teaching ten years ago and has been excelling ever since.
Speaking to the news provider, Ms Harris said: "Gaining this qualification was a lot of work but I feel it gives people looking to train with me confidence. Keeping you and your ideas fresh, pushing yourself to keep you up to date with different training methods is always important, we must never stagnate.
"Equestrian training can be a misleading industry but this qualification is a benchmark of quality and knowledge."
Ms Harris explained that it does not matter whether someone is competing at area, regional or national level, a depth of knowledge of both the riders and horses is imperative for trainers and competitors alike.
Dressage was pushed into the public following the London 2012 Olympic Games where Team GB excelled in both the individual and team events. Charlotte Dujardin was one of the stars of the Games winning both discipline with thanks to the help in the latter.