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teach eager riders some valuable horseback riding skills. Batton’s clinics were highly successful to the point where she was invited to South Africa to conduct one.
However, with every success- ful clinic, there always seemed to be one pitfall. “What was difficult was that I would teach these clin- ics but then not come back for a year because I would go back to coach at Dartmouth, so by the time I came back, riders would forget some of the skills,” Batton informed me. So, this sparked an idea in Sally. She decided to write a book. Batton’s goal was to sup- ply all types of riders with quality tips and techniques to help them become the best riders they could be.
Sally was no stranger to writ- ing when she decided to create The Athletic Equestrian: Over 40 Exercises for Good Hands, Power Legs, and Superior Seat Awareness. Previously, she had written a book on Polocrosse. Batton also told me that when she decided to write the book on equestrian skills, it took her about
July 2022
  ten years to really write the book. “I’m not the best creative writer,” Batton informed me. “So I called in my friend, Christian Keim, who was the head coach of the UNH Equestrian and now runs her own Cold Moon Farm.” Keim has also received awards for her equestrian journalism and has about one thousand published articles to her credit. “Keim is a great writer, so we got together to write a proposal and submitted it to Trafalgar Square Publishing.”
Batton also enlightened me on how the book’s publication process went. “Together, we did chapter outlines, submitted a chapter to the publishing house in 2019, and lucky enough; we ended up getting the call.” The pride that Batton and Keim felt was palpable and absolutely de- served. It just so happens that that particular publishing house publishes about one book for every hundred submissions they receive. “The horse world is huge,” Batton told me.
And then, in 2020, COVID hit, and the clinics had to shut down, but Batton and Keim didn’t let the pandemic stop them from creating this master- piece of a book. “Chris and I were co-writers, and it was my teaching philosophy we used, and Chris wrote the brunt of it.” In the book, there is “Coach Sal- ly’s Teaching Tips,” and it’s com- piled of everything Batton has taught over the years. Sally also told me that she was in charge of getting the pictures for the book as well. “I went through 3,000 photos and narrowed it down to 250.” The duo ended up submit- ting the book in May 2021, and it was published in February of 2022.
When asked about how sub- mitting the book felt, Batton re- sponded, “It felt great to submit the book, but it felt even better to see it once it was published.” Clearly, for Batton, seeing all the hard work and effort that she and Keim put into this book was a fantastic feeling. “It’s really been an exciting time,” Batton told me happily. “It’s been awesome. The book is selling well according to
the publishers and the numbers, and we’ve got an enthusiastic re- sponse from coaches and riding instructors.” Sally was happy to see that her teaching tools were also helpful to other coaches and instructors. “You know, I wrote this book for riders, but it really is for anyone who wants to ride, whether it’s seasoned riders or amateurs or people just starting out, it is for anyone who is a part of the equestrian world.”
Sally Batton’s accomplish- ments are nothing short of as- tounding. When asked about this whole experience overall, she had this to say. “It’s has been so exciting for me. Seeing all the positive feedback and grateful reaction from riders and coaches has been wonderful. It was hard work going through it, but we persevered, and I just love what I do.”
Sally’s book, The Athletic Equestrian: Over 40 Exercises for Good Hands, Power Legs, and Superior Seat Awareness, is available at www.athleticeques- Sally Batton can be reached for clinics or lessons at

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