Horse Riding isn’t easy; it is a sport and an art all in one. Jessica Mount is a plus sized horse rider and has been riding horses for 30 years. Jessica is an active rider and regularly participates in “dressage riding. Dressage riding is a highly skilled form of riding performed in exhibition and competition, as well as an “art”. According to the International Equestrian Federation, dressage is “the highest expression of horse training” where “horse and rider are expected to perform from memory a series of predetermined movements and is performed solely for the sake of mastery.”
Jessica was introduced to horses at an early age by her mother, and fell in love. The first time she rode a horse she was only six months old, riding on the saddle in front of her mom. When she was six years old she began taking classes and has been riding regularly ever since.
Mount has won four blue ribbons and several second place awards in the past four dressage competitions she has entered. In addition, she has earned the award of amateur rider of the year.
Being a plus-sized rider, Jessica has had many obstacles to overcome, with the most challenging being her balance. The more she trains the better she gets and she keeps herself conditioned for regular competition.
Currently, Jessica is working towards the Federal Equestrian International level, which is an upper level of riding. She is confident that with more training, that her and her horse are fully capable of reaching this level. Jessica trains five times a week, but in the month prior to a competition she trains six times a week. Each session is about an hour long, and she does training sessions fin dressage, trail, and jumping.
In general, Jessica isn’t judged in the arena because of her weight, she has been told that her and her horse are a “well matched pair.”
For Jessica, riding horses has helped in every aspect of her life, and she is a lover of horses through and through. Training with her horse has taught her how to communicate in new ways. Learning to read the non-verbal communication and body language of her horse has also been very valuable with parenting and reading the non-verbal language of her daughter.
On Facebook, Jessica receives many inquiries and responses from other plus-sized people who say they would love to try riding, and to those she says GO FOR IT! Mount is part of a Facebook group called “English Plus-Size Riders Group,” which promotes body positivity. The group now has over 4,000 members from around the world. To follow Jessica on Facebook head to https://www.facebook.com/tehmojojojo.
For a closer look at the images, plus a few extra, take a look at the gallery below