Emma Warren isn’t horsing around


Emma Warren competing with her horse Wally,

Alex Hall , Podcast Editor

At age ten, junior Emma Warren discovered her overwhelming passion for horseback riding. Once introduced to the sport, she instantly fell in love and decided to dedicate her life practicing and improving her skills.

“The kind of riding I do is called jumpers,” Warren said. “At the competitions, we’re scored based on speed and accuracy over all the jumps. You have to go clear under the time without knocking any rails.”

Normally during season, competitions are about every other week, but Warren makes the trip down to Del Mar about 6 times a week to practice.

“During practice, I work on my athleticism,” Warren said. “You have to be strong in every muscle of your body in order to ride a horse. Many people don’t think it’s exercise, but your abs, legs and arms all have to be strong.”

The jumpers and their horses try to move up in divisions, which are separated by 3 inches. The division each jumper is in depends on how high his/her horse jumps and the accuracy of the rider. Starting at 2 feet, Warren has worked her way to making jumps up to 3’6’’.

“Since Emma purchased her horse Wally in September 2014, she has improved immensely and has transformed into an amazing rider,” coach Leah Von Henkle said. “Her hard work and dedication is the reason why she is so successful in this sport.”

Because the sport takes up so much time, dedication is essential to success.

“This sport takes so much passion and commitment,” Warren said. “If you are not invested in the sport, then you’re not going to do well because you have to stay focused. It takes so much of your life and your time, so you have to be willing to dedicate your life to it.”

Although horseback riding forces Warren to make sacrifices, the sport brings her overwhelming amounts of joy.

“You develop a bond with your horse, and when you go out and nail it, it’s the best feeling,” Warren said. “When you and your horse share this unique experience, it brings so much peace and happiness. You just feel so accomplished and satisfied.”