Nancy Hutson: ‘Don’t Let the Old Gal In’

Yesterday I posted about Janne Rumbough and how at 75 she is still riding, training and competing in dressage at the highest level. Just like Clint Eastwood who, at 88, is still working non stop and not letting the “Old Man” in. Janne is not letting the “Old Gal” in. Today I am posting my interview with Nancy Hutson. Nancy comes to train with my Florida coach Lou Denizard once a month for a week at a time during the winter. Nancy is going to be 70 this year.

1. When did you start riding? I started at 3 doing pony rides at fairs. I was obsessed with horses from the beginning. Also, the horses in front of various stores that you could ride for a nickel were compelling to me.

2.Have you always ridden during your life? I have ridden most of my life. I took breaks at various times because of money and work pressures but, for the most part, I was never able to stop. Luckily, I was always able to find a horse to ride.

3. What disciplines have you ridden? Western until mid-20’s and then I had my first dressage lesson on a 26 year old retired hunter pony. That was addicting and I never looked back.

5.  Do you compete now?  I have shown sporadically and have my silver medal. I show I-1 now.

6.How do you stay fit for riding? By riding one or two horses a day and doing yoga up to three times per week.

7. At age 70 are there any physical problems that you feel have come with age? Staying flexible in the spine is the  most challenging. I have atlas/axis chiropractic, rolfing, massage, and yoga to keep me fit, balanced and maximally flexible. It is important for me to be aware of my body, feel it’s imbalances and correct them. Being out of alignment in my spine, or tight/stuck in certain muscle groups leads, in my mind, to injury. Thus I spend a good deal of time getting help by the above professionals to keep my body going. Interestingly, my horse gets bodywork/massage, chiropractic and Functional Electrical Stimulation (FES) on his back. So he gets the same treatment I do.

8. How do you find your energy level?  Do you take any vitamin, mineral or other supplements? My energy level is better than ever. I have never been fitter or had more well-being in my body. That is because I spend a lot of time doing what it takes to keep it that way. I take CBD oil, glucosamine/chrondroitin sulfate, Vitamin D3/calcium and a multi-vitamin.

9. Do you have any unrealized goals in your riding that you still hope to achieve? I would love to show Grand Prix. I would have to conquer my show nerves to do it. An on-going issue that I have yet to conquer.

10. Are there any adventures or dreams would like to pursue that you have not done so far? My husband and I have done many riding safaris in Africa; galloping and riding for 8 hours a day or more. We have been to Kenya four times, Malawi, Botswana twice, South Africa twice, Namibia (rode across the Namib desert from Windhoek to Swakopmund (400K) in 10 days. All of this was in our 40’s. . We have also ridden in Ecuador, Peru, Mexico, France (a vineyard tour in Bourdeaux!), Costa Rica. These were all booked with Equitours ( I highly recommend them.

11. Is there anything you fear, in general, about getting older? Not being able to ride is my greatest fear. I have just bought a 14 h 3” German Riding Pony in anticipation of needing a smaller horse than my lovely, loyal, 16.2” hh Hanoverian

12.Tell me a bit about your new position with Dressage Foundation.  I have just joined the board of The Dressage Foundation which is a not for profit foundation that gives grants and support to professionals, amateurs, clinics, etc. These are all geared to the support of dressage in this country. They support the and invented The Century Club. This is where the combined age of the horse and rider is 100.

13 What advice would you give to a young rider about riding and about horses.

NEVER, NEVER, NEVER GIVE UP! Stay humble and get the best coach and trainer you can find. There is always much to learn so stay open to advice. Do Not let anyone make you feel small in their training and coaching. Find someone else that can advise you while maintaining your dignity.

Thank you Nancy for taking part in my investigation of how to keep the “Old Gal” out.

Nancy and her Hanoverian gelding known as Divo!

To see the video of Clint Eastwood and the ‘Old Man” song please see my previous post.

Tomorrow I will be answering the questions. I will let you know how I am keeping the “Old Gal” out of my life. I hope you will join me.


13 responses to “Nancy Hutson: ‘Don’t Let the Old Gal In’”

  1. Truth Bombs Avatar

    reall enjoyed reading it anne.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Wild Atlantic Rider Avatar

    I live this! It can be used for any age group – dont let the nerves on, dont let the doubt in! Lovely posts z

    Liked by 1 person

  3. dprastka Avatar

    These are wonderful interviews! Such GREAT advice and I can’t wait to read your post answering your questions. I LOVE the photo of Nancy with her great big smile and her beautiful horse Divo! Great Job! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. anne leueen Avatar

      Thank you Diana. I’m so glad you are enjoying the series.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. iScriblr Avatar

    Inspiringly brilliant!👏👏

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Integrity Training Avatar

    Such great questions in your interview, and great answers with secrets for us all on keeping out the old gal! Thank you Anne, and Thank you Nancy!!! Inspiring!!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen Avatar

      I’m so glad you liked the post
      Tomorrow it will be me answering the questions!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Kathleen Avatar

    Another great blog. Nice to hear something on this topic.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen Avatar

      Thank you for reading and this nice comment


  7. Janne Rumbough Avatar
    Janne Rumbough

    Great. Article ! I really enjoy reading it !! So many people has shared your article On my FB page , amazing 😉 Thank you Janne

    Sent from my iPhone


    Liked by 1 person

    1. anne leueen Avatar

      It has been my pleasure Janne
      It is great to know that people, horse riders and others can be inspired by you and by Nancy.


  8. Moushmi Radhanpara Avatar

    This, just reading this was so inspiring. Not all can do this.

    Liked by 2 people

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