Dressage Rider Excels Despite LimitationsBy Kentucky Equine Research Staff · July 16, 2015
Most riders use their legs to help them stay balanced in the saddle and to cue their horses when a gait change or directional adjustment is needed. Natasha Baker, a British para-dressage equestrian, can’t count on assistance from her legs because of permanent damage to muscles and nerves caused by a virus when she was young.
Despite this challenge, Natasha brought home two gold medals from the London 2012 Paralympics. She rode Cabral to wins in both the individual championship test grade II event and the freestyle test, claiming England’s first para-equestrian medals.
Natasha also won three gold medals at the 2013 European Championships, and team gold and individual silver medals at the 2014 World Equestrian Games.
Now riding and training two horses, she plans to compete in the 2015 European Championships in Deauville, France, this fall. After that, Natasha has her sights set on the next Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro with one or both mounts.