As I was driving through Tonbridge High Street this morning, I remembered some dark days post redundancy when I was visiting the Job Centre to diligently collect JSA support. My daughter was just walking then and I'd take her into the building, feel awful and then drive home to Tunbridge Wells often in tears. Thank goodness the support was there because we got through it and while collecting one of my last payments I spotted a leaflet for NEA (New Enterprise Allowance) which was a supporting financial system for new business ideas. It was this scheme (and there are others) that got me working again, as I set myself up to coach again and from that, DISCO was born.
DISCO DRESSAGE was in fact conceived a much longer time ago,circa 2002. In a car park, in the dark, after a long day at the National BUSA finals, somewhere in the Country (can't remember!) I was sitting with my very talented team mate who had qualified as an individual for the dressage final. She had to ride a dressage to music routine and so we had to think of one fast! She did all the hard work and the riding, I think I may have helped with music choice and enthusiasm. Or maybe companionship and a level of uncertified coaching (I wasn't qualified at this point in my life). Maybe I didn't help at all...she did brilliantly.
As she burst onto the centre line to Billie Jean, the horse she was riding did a big expressive buck. It was quite exciting. Anyway, she didn't fall off, it was perfectly timed and she won the title - National Student Dressage Champ. I was a very proud friend.
Fast forward to November 2019, we were sat in a coffee shop in Sussex with our toddlers and I suggested we try some clinics at her beautiful venue. I thought it was worth a try. It really was! Our pilot event sold out straight away and the feedback was just incredible. That was February 2020 and then....lockdown. Homeschooling...no more DISCO, but I did choreograph plenty of routines in the kitchen with my children in between Zoom maths and screaming into a pillow.
Anyway, life is still up and down, health related Government initiated restrictions have been replaced by economic uncertainty, spiralling costs and mortgage rates that do not allow for other luxuries. I'm developing the DISCO "at home" offering to mitigate against some of these factors and broaden accessibility to the joy of our offering. If environmentally conscious horse owners prefer not to put their horses in diesel-glugging horse boxes they can still be involved. In my view, travelling horses puts a stress and strain on us and them. Sometimes, it's not the best plan. Don't get me wrong, I love a party as much as anyone and it's fun to get out and about to broaden horizons.
DISCO "at home" isn't ready yet, but we do have some parties coming up....Scotland in a few weeks, Sussex in August and again in September, Berkshire in September, Scotland and Sussex in October and then finishing the year with Kent and Sussex in November.
This Summer/Autumn, we are offering a wonderful Frozen routine for our Juniors and for the Seniors we've got our Tina Turner Tribute which was a big success in Northumberland at our launch event there. What a legend she was.
For the Winter, we are moving on to Moana and AC DC. Yet to be choreographed....I'm looking forward to that.
Have a great week,