Sarah O'Neill Dressage
From the horse's mouth...
Sarah's strengths as an instructor are her patience, her compassion, and her sense of humor. In each lesson, she works with me to set goals and is always kind yet tenacious when I face challenges. She has a great many exercises ready at hand to help a rider develop any skill, and she leavens lesson time with her ability to laugh -- and to make her students laugh! I always leave my lessons with Sarah feeling supported in my learning process and inspired to push myself further.
-- Susanna Ryan
Theo and Meaghan
My horse, Theo, and I have been working with Sarah for over 5 years. Theo is an amazing 26 year old rescued Warmblood that I welcomed into my family 8 years ago. When we met Sarah, I was struggling to move past the training level and was getting frustrated that my instructor wasn't advancing my skills. Theo lacked muscle, impulsion and collection. In a nutshell, neither of us was enjoying the time in the ring together. Over the years, Sarah has strengthened Theo to the point that most people think he is in his mid-teens. When it came to me, Sarah started with the basics, broke my bad habits, and gave me confidence to form a great relationship with my big boy while having fun together. Sarah worked with both Theo and me, individually and as a pair, showing patience, understanding of each of our fears, and persistence to help us work through them. While neither Theo nor I aspire for greatness at the upper levels in the show ring, we have created a strong partnership and enjoy the unique bond it has forged. Sarah may just convince us to start showing again at 1st Level and maybe even 2nd Level. I owe the incredible health and strength of my wonderful horse to the dedication and expertise of Sarah. For me, she has given me back the joy of riding with an understanding of my horse and the tools to apply when our fears get the best of us. I have and continue to recommend her as a knowledgeable, professional dressage coach and trainer.
-- Chris Messina
I have been riding and training with Sarah for 4 years. I came to her with my then 7-year-old Lusitano. He is now 10 and we are doing so well thanks to Sarah. She accomplished so much for his foundation. I remember seeing her ride him for the first time and I just knew she would be perfect for him. She is so skilled, so correct in her training and is very in tune with the horse. She also knows when the horse had had enough and does not push them beyond their physical capabilities. Sarah works hard to give me the knowledge I need to ride my best. She is fun and engaging and I love that she can combine training and riding with her teaching. I started at Intro dressage with Sarah and will be showing at 1st Level this summer and schooling at 2nd. She is also a great coach at shows. I highly recommend Sarah as a trainer and a teacher, my horse loves her and so do I!
-- June O'Brien
Cisco and June
Nevaeh and Tucker
I met Sarah while she was an instructor at Hybid Farm. I would watch her lessons and see her students grow in their riding and was quite excited when my daughter (Nevaeh) got the opportunity to work with her. From the first lesson that started in September, to the final lesson of the program in June, Nevaeh gained more confidence, rode with more passion (if that was even possible) and worked on areas of difficulty with such drive. Sarah gave her the power to use her voice. Nevaeh always came out of her lessons with exciting news about learning something "new" or feeling like she was mastering something difficult with the horse she was riding. Nevaeh grew tremendously as a rider. I am forever grateful to Sarah for her expertise in horses, her thoughtful instruction, and the care she gives to her students. Thank you.
-- Johanna Lewis
From the first time I rode with Sarah and watching her teach other lessons I knew that I was going to learn a lot from her, and indeed I did. She helped me understand different concepts of riding by breaking it down and explaining it in a simpler way. At the end of every lesson I felt like I had progressed in my riding or accomplished a concept. I would go tell my Mom after the lesson how much fun I had and how much I had learned that day or what I was struggling with but getting better at it. When the program had ended I had gained so much more knowledge, growth and confidence from Sarah. I am so grateful that I had the chance to work with her, and learn from her amazing instructions. I also loved how she cared so much to see me succeed in my riding. (It was a great feeling when I did.) Thank you!
-- Nevaeh Lewis