This week’s trainer in the spotlight is British Showjumping coach Joanne Burns Firth from Lincolnshire. Joanne’s motto is ‘believe and achieve’. Here we find out a bit more about her...
Hello! My name is Joanne Burns Firth and I am a British Showjumping (BS) UKCC level three coach. I am based at JJ Equestrian Services in Goxhill, North Lincolnshire.
I have competed in British Showjumping since I was eight years old, on ponies and as a young rider. I was a regular competitor at the Royal International Horse Show and the Horse of the Year Show and represented my country on the teams.
Now, as a senior, I take pleasure in breaking and producing quality young horses and coaching riders to achieve their goals and dreams. Coaching is a great passion; I love seeing a horse and rider improve and I get as much pleasure from watching clients win as I do winning myself.
I run the Lincolnshire side of the ‘BS Lincs/Notts Academy’ where we take a holistic approach to showjumping. This means that we work on a rider’s flatwork, as well as their jumping. Together we set goals and have guest speakers talk to us about bitting, saddle fitting, feeding etc. I believe that this is important, as so many things affect a horse and rider’s performance. These academies are fantastic as they provide riders with continuity from accredited coaches, as well as the time to social with fellow competitors in a non-show environment.
I hold regular showjumping clinics at many venues throughout Lincolnshire and Yorkshire, as well as at my own yard. In 2015 I was delighted to be nominated as BS Coach of the Year. I think that one of the most important things for a rider to have is confidence and self-belief. A rider must also be dedicated and hard working; my motto is believe and achieve.