Lifestyle

Equestrian Siblings

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It’s not everyday you get a chance to meet young talent, representing the country. And it’s this exact honour that Habibti Magazine had, meeting sisters Safiya Al Mahmood and Aneesa Al Mahmood.

Both sisters are Equestrians competing nationally in Bahrain and we got an exclusive opportunity to meet them at Al Fursan Stables, along with their trainers Megan and Andrea, to find out more about why they love the sport.
Seventeen year old Safiya and younger sister, thirteen year old Aneesa, specialise in Equestrian dressage, a component of horse riding which focuses mostly on the training of a horse.

 

Having got into the sport from a very early age, both sisters have an immense love for not only the sport but also horses.  Not a common sport to get into, both sisters, describe it as an intimate sport.  ‘’You’re not only training yourself, you’re training another being as well and that’s the beauty of the sport.’’
As well as being an intimate sport, it is also a gruelling one. A typical a day of training for both girls involves training 4 to 6 times a week.  Which means heading to the stables straight after a full day at school, training with the horses, followed by helping around the stables, all of which can take up to three hours a day.  After which, the girls will then head home to complete school homework, assignments and revision.

 

Handling such a full schedule can be challenging but the girls seem to be thriving because of it, doing well in school and in the sport.  The sisters explain,
‘’Horse riding is a place to relieve your stresses. It allows you to work on yourself. The sport trains you to focus, concentrate and manage your time. It teaches you discipline and mental sharpness. It’s not only learning about the sport or horses, it teaches you many life skills’’.

 

There are many components to Equestrian horse riding such as jumping, cross-country, endurance and dressage. The sport entails a rider to be paired ideally with one horse but a rider would be expected to train a few horses at any given time.  As every horse is different, with a different personality and characteristics, they need to be trained differently, changing and adapting training styles to each horse.  This task of adapting a different style of teaching different horses, teaches you how to self-critique and also patience.

 

 

The competitive side of the sport shows how an individual sport such as this can also teach and encourage teamwork; entering the arena, as a team and then competing against each other.  It teaches positive competition between team members as well as a competition between your personal best, training yourself, learning your mistakes and training harder.

The girls further explain,  “There’s no end to learning.  You are constantly learning and developing new techniques for your horse, for yourself. It gives you a great insight to yourself’’.

Horse riding is dangerous and not for the faint hearted.  Falling off a horse is common and bruises, scrapes and even fractures are to be expected. But it seems, the joy of horse riding outweighs any pain that they may suffer because of it.

The level of commitment is apparent in both these girls, with no time for socializing with friends and little time for the family, it’s sheer love and dedication for the sport that drives these girls forward with hopes to represent Bahrain internationally one day.

 

And we at Habibti Magazine look forward to witnessing their achievements.

 

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