Steady Eddie helps avert winter blues

A riding simulator is proving popular as the sharp winter restricts riding real horses.

As the snow and ice makes hacking treacherous and freezes up arenas, many horse owners and riders are wondering when they will again get back in the saddle. But whether riders are worried about losing fitness and training, or they're worried about piling on the pounds over the festive period, Norfolk's Play Barn Riding Centre in Poringland has the answer.

Steady Eddie is a fully responsive riding simulator, offering riders the chance to continue their training even when snow stops play. Centre manager Nicole Douglass said: 'This is the second winter we've had Steady Eddie. We bought him as we could not afford an indoor school but needed a way to keep up business during the winter. We offer simulator lessons and stable management to groups and individuals and Steady Eddie is proving to be very popular.'

Groups such as the BSJA Junior Academy have already booked the simulator and individuals can have a lesson with the in-house instructor or bring their own instructor.

'Steady Eddie has walk, two trot settings and two canter settings, and mirrors can show you what's happening. It also has a calorie counter which shows how hard you work – it is akin to a lunge lesson really,' said Douglass.

'The simulator is great for teaching kids to trot and canter as it just keeps going.'

The sensitive simulator reacts to every movement of the legs and hands, helping riders to work on their position, aids and transitions.

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To find out more about hiring Steady Eddie, contact Play Barn Riding Centre on 01508 495095.