Olympic Athlete Gives Up Golden Opportunity So She Can Help Her Horse

Horses are sensitive animals. They rely on their trainers for their well being. On many occasions a horse trainer can either see or sense that there is something wrong with their horse. It may be sublte or it may not. It may not be obvious to everyone, but to them it is. It is an  important part of their relationship. For a horse to function as its best level, it needs to be in good health. If you have ever spent time around horses, you know what I mean. Their eating habits need to me monitored and maintained. They need a complete exercise routine. And grooming is also important.

There are many medical conditions that horses can have. Colic is a digestive problem that can affect a horse. There are many causes of colic and it does need to treatment as soon as possible. Heaves, also knows as RAO, is another common condition to affect a horse. It is a chronic respiratory inflammation that can be caused by an allergic reaction to airborne particles. It is like asthma in humans. RAO is most often seen in horses that are in their stable a lot and exposed to dust and molds from old hay and straw.

Laminitis is an inflammation of certain internal structures of the horses hoof. This is a painful and serious condition. It can cause lameness; It can cause the horse to lie down to try to relieve any pain in its hooves. The affected foot may feel hot to the touch.

There are many causes of Laminitis. Most of them relate to some form of whole-body stress. It could be trauma, colic surgery, hormonal disorders, etc.. Another common cause is eating too much grain. It is a condition that does need to be treated or the horse could become lame for life.

So what are trainers to do when any of these situations occur?

Read the rest of the story here:

Athletes spend at least four years of their lives dedicated to one thing, and one thing only: training for the Olympics. You can only imagine how it feels to finally step foot into an Olympic arena.

Now, imagine getting there — and turning right around to go back home without getting to prove yourself in the Games. For one equestrian, that’s exactly what happened in the recent Grand Prix competition in Rio.

In years past, Dutch dressage rider Adelinde Cornelissen has won an Olympic silver and bronze, plus World and European gold medals. For all of these medals, she’s had her chestnut gelding horse named Parzival to thank.
This year, the pair was all set and ready to go. This is what Adelinde has been training so hard for. “The first days in Rio went according to plan: a relaxed flight, stabling good, training good,” Adelinde wrote on Facebook. “Parzival feels happy and fit.”
But instead of finishing out the Games, Adelinde decided to retire mid-test — in the middle of the arena, with thousands of people watching.
Scroll down to see the incredible and powerful reason why Adelinde and Parzival’s story of ultimate friendship is going viral…

horse training
Adelinde Cornelissen

Olympic dressage rider Adelinde Cornelissen recently told the following story on Facebook:
“My story…
Lots has happened…
The first days in Rio went according to plan: a relaxed flight, stabling good, training good. Parzival feels happy and fit.
Until yesterday morning… I planned to train early on Tuesday morning, so I was at the stable at 6am. Saying good morning to Parzival, I saw the right side of his head was swollen, he had been kicking the walls. I took his temperature: he had a fever of over 40 degrees Celcius, but he still didn’t look sick.
He was eating and drinking and while walking I had a hard time keeping up with him, as always…”

horse training

Ken Braddick /

“Jan Greve came right away and after double checking with the vets here they concluded he was bitten by an insect or spider or some sort of animal, which produces toxics.
To get the toxics out of his system we gave him fluids. From 6.30 to 15.45hrs we kept him on this. It helps the kidneys to clean up the toxics out of the body.
The vets at the clinic took swaps from the nose and checked the blood. The temperature dropped gradually and by 15.30 it was 38.4… We then took x-rays from the jaw and echoed the area. Just making sure. All ok.
At the end of the day the fever was down and I hand-walked Parzival a bit. He looked a lot better and the swelling of his head was at least 1/3 the size of this morning…”

horse training


“Then difficult decisions came… We requested the FEI if we could swap starting places within the team, so Parzi could get a day to recover. Competing on Thursday instead of Wednesday. But the FEI declined.
At that point I didn’t want to compete anymore… Parzival’s health is more important than anything else in this world!
I slept at the stables, checking up on Parzi every hour… I was not going to leave him alone! Of course I didn’t get any sleep…
Main thing, this morning temperature had dropped to 37.5! And the swelling again had come down a bit.”

horse training


“New difficult decisions to make.
I had decided yesterday I was not going to compete, but now the temperature was back to normal, he looked fit, was eating and drinking good, I also didn’t want to let the team down… In the back of my mind knowing we had no reserve combination here… What to do?
Between 7am and 8am we were allowed to ride in the arena.”

Adelinde Cornelissen

“I discussed with Jan Greve and Johan Rockx and decided we were going to walk and trot under saddle for 10 min and see how he was…
And so we did… We went to the arena, rode a few laps and he looked happy and fit. Coming back to the stables the temperature was still down…
Again difficult descisions… What to do? He is fit now, but you know what happened yesterday… Nobody to fill in my place if I would withdraw, letting the team down. Questions questions… What is wise? I discussed with several vets and the team coach.. The FEI vets came and checked up on him around 10am.
All gave green light to compete.. We decided I would give it a try.”

horse training


“The fever was down, which means the toxics are out of his system. There is still a bit of swelling in the jaw, but we cooled it all the time and the swelling gets less…
I agreed to give it a try.
Knowing the story, I took it easy in the warmup and didn’t want to ride full. He was ok, although he didn’t feel very powerful. Normal of course after a day like yesterday.
I walked a lot to save the energy..”

horse training

Adelinde Cornelissen

“When I entered I already felt he was giving his utmost and being the fighter he is, he never gives up… But in order to protect him, I gave up…My buddy, my friend, the horse that has given everything for me his whole life does not deserve this…
So I saluted and left the arena…
Adelinde is so noble for putting her horse’s needs before anything else.

The dedicated bond between a horse trainer and their horse is unbreakable. It requires a strong foundation. And it needs to be reinforced. You can build this foundation using a connection training method called Liberty Training.

If you are not familiar with it, it consists of 8 basic exercises. These exercises allow the trainer to connect with their horse. They will build a solid and strong foundation between them and their horse. You will not achieve your goals without it. A deep, meaningful, and strong bond between the two of you is necessary. And you and your horse will not only be frustrated, but will not work well together without it. All the training of your horse is for the continual benefits and enjoyment from your training.

You can see how strong the bond is between Adelinde Cornelissen and her horse Parzival.

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