This week I’m chatting with international dressage rider and highly respected trainer, Matt Frost. Matt has represented Great Britain and frequently offers training at a number of regular dressage and flatwork clinics and lectures all over the UK (and beyond). Based in Gloucestershire, Matt and his team also provides first class competition livery helping people get the most out of their horses at AM Dressage . Read on to discover more about Matt’s story to date…
Tell us a little about you and your horses.
My name is Matt Frost. I’m a dressage rider and trainer based on my competition livery yard, AM Dressage in Gloucestershire. I got my first taste of a career with horses when working full time during my A-levels at the Isolde Stud, where I assisted in all aspects of work at the stud. Whilst working there, I received a huge amount of tuition and advice from the stud’s Danish owners Jan Andersen and Birgitte Hartmann. During this time, I also studied for and completed my Equine Dentistry education in America.
In 2009, Adam Kemp and I set up our own competition training facility and livery yard at Wyncolls farm in Gloucestershire which is the base of our business called AM Dressage. Now I am able to compete and train full time either at the yard or at clinics and lectures all over the world.
I’m lucky enough to have really nice group of horses.
Delano is 11 years old, 18hh gelding by Dayano. He has had great results in the few competitions we did last year at small tour level. He’s a bit clumsy, likes to tank off with you, loves cuddles in the stable until he then thinks you are a jolly ball and pushes you across the stable.
Helga is 9 years old 16.1 mare by Chagall. She is a workaholic – every day she tries her hardest. She is a Daddy’s girl and loves any attention going. She likes to keep the girls busy redesigning her bedroom most days!
G Star is 7 years old 17.2hh by Ghandi. G is very sweet natured and cuddly. Most of the time he is very confident and brave, but then when something is scary, or he doesn’t figure out straight away DISASTER!
Dreamy is a 5-year-old 17hh gelding by Dreamboy. He’s a gorgeous horse to have around. Really outgoing and kind. He loves attention and still thinks he’s a stallion sometimes!!
I also have three 3-year-olds, a yearling, and another foal on the way this year……! I’m turning into a collector!!!
How did horses come into your life?
Really simple actually. I went to watch my sister have a riding lesson at the riding school in the village we grew up in. I loved animals and was instantly fascinated with horses from that day on!
How long have you been riding?
Since I was 6 so not long at all….!!
When and where do you ride?
So, I ride 4 – 5 days a week depending on my teaching schedule, alongside the four mentioned earlier I have additional horses in training with me so ride around 8 each day.
I like to vary the training with the horses. We have worked hard to get a wonderful facility here at AM Dressage and have both indoor and outdoor arenas. I also take the horses hacking on the gallops we are able to use next door.
How did you start riding?
At Guy’s farm riding school in Pensford on a pony called Twinkle!
What you and your horses currently working on?
I am constantly working on developing all the horses core strength, so they are strong enough to do the things I am asking of them. Del and Helga are now working at Grand Prix level. G Star is a bit everywhere at the moment as he has been growing over the past year. Some days I start introducing a bit more collection, lateral work, and bigger transitions. Dreamy is growing so I’m not doing a huge amount with him. A bit of hacking and long reining to build up strength,
What do you love about riding?
That it is a constant process of development that never stops!! I love getting out in the fresh air, love being in nature and love being around the horses.
What you would you like to be doing in the future and do you have any goals?
I would love to be on a Team. It has always been an ambition of mine. I would also like to continue enjoying training my horses to the level that they able to go to.
Have you ever had to deal with nerves in riding?
Yes!! I think everyone does. I had a nasty accident that knocked my confidence a while back. It took time to develop my confidence again. At shows I would say I get nerves, but I enjoy them. It’s exciting to be competing and that why I think the nerves are there (in a positive way).
How do you deal with them?
Breathing… not letting them over run your conscious thought. The worst thing is to try to shut them out as they are already in your head!! You eventually learn to live with them and actually appreciate them!!
Your Top Tip
Enjoy yourself !!!!! Life’s too short.
The Final Furlong
Who would be your dream horse to ride?
Who is your equestrian hero?
Carl Hester of course…
If you could have 5 people to dinner who would they be?
At the moment, my family and close friends that I miss so much!!