Defeating the Odds – Sheron Adam on life changing injuries and training on the Dressage Simulator

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Despite being told that she would never walk again, Sheron Adams is not only back in the Dressage Saddle, she is now helping to rehabilitate others, through her own personal experiences, a Dressage Simulator and some steely determination.

Life changing injuries:

“Like so many other girls, I was always crazy about horses. My passion turned into a career and in 1985 I began training young competition horses. Personal circumstances forced me to relocate to the USA for some years, but upon my return to Munich I could resist no longer and I purchased a horse, which reignited my love for all things equestrian once again.

Sadly, in a cruel twist of fate, my passion became my pain and I was badly injured in a serious riding accident. The diagnosis was paralysis.

Determined to get back in the saddle I refused to accept my fate. What followed were some pretty testing times and an intense recovery programme. I had to learn everything from scratch - including how to walk again.

learning to walk

Rehabilitation on the simulator:

“In time I was back on my feet, but eager to be back in the saddle! I had heard about RDA UK and PATH in the USA, accredited organisations using equine therapy. For me personally though, the risk of horse riding was still too high. I needed a safe environment to practise the sport I loved and gradually build the necessary strength to do it.

Using the simulator helped me to regain strength, target key muscle groups and rebuild my confidence again after my injury (which not only left me with physical trauma, but emotional trauma too). The simulator allowed me to train without the fear of the horse bucking or falling, so I was not left feeling tense and I could simply focus on my training.

Recovery can be a very personal road to go down, and as an adult I felt self conscious of people watching me. Using the simulator was a way of training in private, in the comfort and relaxing environment of my own studio.”

Helping others:

“Now, with my own personal experiences, combined with my knowledge and passion for horses and my own Dressage Simulator, I can train other riders and encourage those going through rehabilitation and recovery.

My clients range from people looking for introductory lessons into riding, to those who have been referred by doctors and physiotherapists for rehab. Some have had joint replacements, some have had more serious back injuries – some are 80 years old and simply want to reap the health rewards of riding without the unpredictability of a real horse!”

Sheron is one of the first trainers in Germany to offer lessons on the Dressage Simulator. From her studio in Munich, Sheron is offering therapeutic riding for rehabilitation, Alexander Technique and introductory sessions for beginners. For more information visit www.reitsimulator-muenchen.de

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