Liz ‘Sparkle’ as we call her ( a nickname that has stuck due to one of my daughters not being able to say ‘Barclay’, has been teaching the Turriff family for over 9 years.
As a complete amateur to dressage, Liz patiently taught me how to get my handsome boy William, an 18hh thoroughbred X who hardly knew I was on his back…. to work correctly, engage and actually go ‘on the bit’.
What she was able to get me to do on him was magic. I never thought we would be able to do half of the lateral work we accomplished, counter canter, half passes etc
Liz makes lessons exciting and you know you’ve done well when she screams at you with delight !!
All three of my girls Liz taught from a very young age and all went on to do well in different equestrian fields, how lucky were they to get such a great instructor from such a young age.. Poppy my youngest who’s 6 can’t wait to start with Liz Sparkle!
My most recent accomplishment was with my ‘quirky, warmblood hunt horse, Lux. Liz helped get Lux and I ‘in the groove’, he went from a head shaking, heavy in your hand, hunt horse to a forward, light, uphill, forward thinker. In 2013 we won the Working Hunter at The Royal Cornwall show and qualified for HOYS. What a dream come true… Liz helped me on the flat in between the jumping and helped me mentally prepare for the biggest horse show in England and we did well!
Liz is a superb trainer and friend…
Liz Barclay makes us all ‘Sparkley !!!
I have been having regular lessons with Liz Barclay for the last few years with the aim of improving my dressage scores for affiliated eventing. Now not only have my scores consistently improved beyond recognition, and are continuing to do so, but I also have a more supple, balanced and correctly muscled horse, and he loves his lessons too! Liz has an intuitive way of looking at a horse and working out what makes him (and his rider!) tick and seems to know instinctively what will work for that individual to solve a problem or achieve a certain movement or pace. I certainly feel I get my moneys worth as she works us hard, which is essential to get results, but never overdoes it or risks pushing the horse out of his comfort zone. There's no trotting or cantering around endlessly in circles but inventive exercises which keep me and my horse focused. I have achieved movements with my horse that I didn't think were possible, and I now feel excited about dressage, not that it's just the formality before the jumping. Liz has not only provided me with the physical tools and techniques to improve my dressage, but, having competed herself, has given psychological support and insight into competitive riding which has helped me in all three phases.
I have been trained by Liz on numerous horses for the past five years.
She has helped me to produce horses from novice to advanced level and were continuing to work together as I aim for an even higher level of competition.
The training I have received is also essential to my academic life, as I work towards my BHSI and a Bsc in Equine Science.
Liz's insight, knowledge and vast experience have helped me to shape my career, she is as invaluable a teacher as she is a friend and would be an asset to any aspiring equestrian.
I first met Liz a number of years ago after I bought Paddy, a 17.2 IDxTB gelding, as a horse to have fun hacking out and to do a bit of schooling on. Turned out he knew more about dressage than I did and was not a great hacker! A friend suggested I try Liz to see if she could help me improve my dressage skills - she has done far more than that. After realising that I had a horse with "issues", Liz has helped me and Paddy through some seriously tricky times following a riding accident whilst pregnant to having confidence issues after my son (now 4) was born. I have to say that if Liz had not helped us through those times, I would have had to find him another home. Now, I still have a horse with some "quirks", but he is a happier, more rounded and relaxed animal and with Liz's continued training and sometimes direct approach, we are enjoying life. Thanks Liz for your continuing support and help.
I have been training with Liz for approaching 12 months. During that short time she has taken a very enthusiastic, but very green, combination and started to mould us into a focused partnership. Liz can see so much more of us as a combination than what is in front of her for that hour once a week during our lessons. She has an incredible understanding of the bio-mechanics of horse and rider and can tell in an instant how to achieve the improvements you are looking for without ‘quick fixes’ and gadgets. Liz explains things clearly & helps you to understand fully ‘why’ you are doing things. She is endlessly patient, knowledgeable, supportive and best of all has a great sense of humour. She has a wonderful empathy with both horses and people, developing a real understanding of us both as individuals. We see real improvement week on week, both my horse and myself enjoy our lessons and look forward to the next one. I wholeheartedly recommend Liz as a trainer, not only of dressage horses, but of real horsemanship.
Liz and I met when I was 15 years old. I was spending three months oft the summer in Cornwall and was desperate to get back in the saddle. I had been riding at home for a long time. Since I could not afford riding lessons Liz let me help her with the farm and the animals, and in return gave me riding lessons. We started of with sitting lessons. I was allowed to ride and care for Peer, a tall, impressive moving black beauty, bred by Liz herself. Every once in a while I was even allowed to ride her dressage horse Marie. Liz taught me over the summer with a lot of patience, energy and compassion. We would talk things through theoretically, I would watch her train her horses and discuss techniques. I enjoyed this time of intense training and learning about horses and their management so much that I have been returning since. I have been visiting Liz during my holidays, she would teach me, we would travel to shows and I would watch her give riding lessons. Liz has provided me with a fantastic dressage seat. She has not only been teaching me about dressage, but about horses in general and how to keep and treat them with care and awareness. She has shown me how professional horse management should be performed and I remember that every day. I am convinced that this is a big part of why I am successful with my career as an equine veterinarian. Thank you Liz ever so much.
Liz is undoubtedly one the main reasons I became interested in horses.
Being Liz’s god-daughter I was lucky enough to be introduced to horses at her farm, Wringford, at a very young age. When I was old enough, Liz taught me the basics on the neighbour’s pony, who I immediately renamed Sunshine Georgia (nobody knows why I choose that name) and I remember feeling really happy riding up and down the lanes around Wringford.
When my parents decided to move back to the Netherlands when I was eight, I made them promise I could have riding lessons there, otherwise I wouldn’t come with them. Luckily, we spent most off our school holidays returning to Cornwall and staying at Wringford.
Liz continued to teach me and now I was also interested in dressage. I still enjoyed lovely hacks around the farm, but I also loved riding in Liz’s outside arena.
The experience of riding Liz’s Prix St. Georges horse, Marie, was absolutely amazing. I have been lucky enough to be allowed to ride not only Liz’s own horse, but also one of the other horses stabled at Wringford.
On this horse, Mr. Frost, I have had the best of times and I was enormously sad when he passed away.
Being around horses has taught me to take the good with the bad and I definitely owe a large part of that knowledge to Liz!
I have known Liz Barclay for 12 years and over this time she has trained and supported me with my horses, through good times and bad. She has helped me to become a more confident rider, teaching me to recognise horses strengths and weaknesses and schooling them to the best of their natural abilities. With Liz it is all about the horse, using gradual consistent training and her huge knowledge and experience which has been gained from training all types of horses to Grand Prix over the years. I am a better rider and my present horse has benefited from all this experience.
I first had a lesson with Liz when I was producing a young thoroughbred a few years ago. She gave me some very valuable tips and improved my dressage scores - we started being placed at BE100 after our first lesson! I then spent a year working with a very tricky mare who had many problems both physically and emotionally. Liz helped me over a six month period to change her frame and rhythm plus engage her and encourage her to enjoy her work. Her dressage marks improved from a 49 to a 23 over these months at BE100 and she is now working well and will look to move up to Novice in the future. Recently I bought a little warmblood X four year old and again Liz has very kindly driven a further distance to help me with her. She is quite sharp but bright and Liz has been brilliant at helping me understand more of the psychological aspects of schooling a young horse. In the future any horse I work with I will ask Liz for advice and know that I will learn something at every lesson.
About Liz Barclay
Her love for horses together with her dedication made her into the trainer and dressage rider she is, today. She is versatile and inventive and likes a challenge; whether it is a technical training question, a confidence issue or a problem involving the management of the horse or pony.
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