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Claire Martin

MSc Veterinary Physiotherapy - BHS ACP - BHS Stage 3

My name is Claire and I own and run Blue Cat Equestrian, based in Cambridgeshire. 


Anyone who knows me, knows I’m not very good at writing about myself! So, I decided to get my clients to do the hard part and I asked them what they would like to know about me. I must say, I wasn’t expecting such a brilliant assortment of questions; some work related and some completely random! Here is the result……

Why did you choose to call your business Blue Cat Equestrian? 

 

Unsurprisingly, this question came up a lot. I wanted something different and catchy that people would remember. Cats (and horses!) are my favourite animals and I love the colour blue, so I came up with Blue Cat Equestrian. 

Have you ridden all your life? 

I learnt to ride at a local riding school when I was 8. I got my first pony, Frankie, when I was 12 and since then I have ridden nearly every day. 

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If you could only eat one food for the rest of your life what would it be? 


This one is easy. Cereal. I could eat it for every meal of the day. 

Why do you offer physiotherapy, riding and coaching? 


I think physiotherapy, riding and coaching all go hand in hand. For example, I often see horses ridden as part of a physiotherapy assessment, however, being a rider and coach means I am able to assess the effect of the rider on the horse. I am also able to coach clients on exercises I have suggested as part of their horse’s physiotherapy programme, such as long lining or ridden pole work exercises. 

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What is your favourite thing to do when you’re not working? 

 

I like keeping fit; I go to a local bootcamp and do obstacle course racing. I also enjoy reading. One of my favourite authors is Jodi Picoult. 

What is your favourite part of your job? 


When I am coaching, I love to see people gain confidence in their riding ability. It is also really rewarding seeing horses improve through a physiotherapy programme I have created. 

Do you mind working outside in the winter? 


I will admit I much prefer the summer and there are times when I wish I was inside, but I always have extra layers and a change of clothes in the car for emergencies!

What are you most proud of in your career? 


This definitely has to be working with Dr Sue Dyson on a piece of research funded by World Horse Welfare. We looked into the effect of rider skill on ridden horse behaviour. There is a post about this on ‘The Knowledge Hub’ if you would like to find out more. 

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If you could have a superpower, what would it be? 


I would like to be able to time travel. I think it would be amazing to go back in time and see how people lived in the past. 

What has been your best equestrian experience? 


There have been two….


In 2011 I spent six months as a working student on an event yard in Maryland, USA. It was the most incredible experience and I am hoping to go back again to visit one day.  


I also worked as a rider at the Animal Heath Trust. I rode horses for lameness investigation and learnt so much in this job. It developed my skills as a rider and also taught me to differentiate between horses with training issues and those with possible underlying pain - This is a really important part of a physiotherapy and/or coaching assessment. 

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What physiotherapy and coaching qualifications do you have? 

-  MSc Veterinary Physiotherapy (2020) 

-  UKCC Level 2 Coach (2019)

What 3 items would you take to a desert island? 


An endless supply of drinking water, a sharp knife and my cat; I think this should keep me covered for a few weeks!

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Do you have any hidden talents? 


I can bake! Chocolate brownies are my secret weapon.

Do you have any nicknames? 

A lot of people call me Purple. So much so that I sometimes don't even respond to Claire.  

(It's because I nearly always wear something purple!). 

Did you design the Blue Cat Equestrian logo yourself?

I did; it is based on my own horse, Winter, wearing our favourite matchy matchy set! She is steel grey and her cross country colours are the Le Mieux Ice Blue set. I drew the logo by hand and then had a small buisness put it into play for me. 

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A big thankyou to my clients for these brilliantly random questions!