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Balance Beam Dressage


By Tommy Brannon

Balance Beam Dressage owner and trainer Ruby Reithel  has relocated her operation from Oxford, Mississippi to Red Hill Farm on Lenderman Road, south east of Collierville, Tennessee. This looks like it will be a positive move for Ruby as well as the mid-south horse community.  The facility, built in 2010, has 27 stalls, 12 paddocks and an outdoor arena with limestone footing.  Her plans are to build an additional arena and more paddocks on the high ground above the barn. The barn also has indoor wash racks and good cross ventilation.

 Ruby’s previous location in Oxford catered to dressage training, with a holistic, well-rounded approach to horsemanship. That will not change. She said that she likes to have a fun training program and enjoys all breeds, but ponies are her specialty.  She offers what she calls a “pony boot camp.”

Her plans are to hold children’s riding camps this summer at the new facility. Previous camps that she hosted had as many as 25 campers. In addition she will offer riding as part of the curriculum for other general summer camps.
A new working student, barn manager is scheduled to come on board in April so there will be a knowledgeable horse person at the barn 24/7. This will accommodate those horses that need special attention, such as medication and night check. 

Being a working student is how Ruby became a trainer, so she knows how well that system works.  She got into riding from the influence of her late sister April, who introduced her to dressage. She became a student at the late Evie Tumlin’s Cedar Wind Farm in Oxford, and was a member of U.S. Pony Club. She competed on her “humongous” 17.3 hand Warmblood named Ghost in fourth level and Prix St. Georges and at the North American Young Riders Championships.

 At age 15 she joined her sister as a summer working student with Olympian Michael Poulin at his dressage center near Ocala, Florida. While in Florida Ruby acquired two horses and completed her USDF bronze medal. After high school graduation she worked for the Michael Poulin and his wife Sharon full time.

She met dressage trainer Sarah Martin at a clinic in Memphis, Tennessee and followed her to Colorado to become Sarah’s working student.  Sarah taught Ruby to focus not  only on the biomechanics of the horses that she was riding, but also using the horse’s natural instincts to guide the horse into a safer, more trusting partnership. Among all of the horse schooling and learning, Ruby graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology from Ole Miss.

Ruby would like to put all of this knowledge and experience to use developing a program of equine therapy for traumatic stress disorder. She says that she is excited to be close the Southern Reins equine therapy and is an admirer of their program.

In addition to the training at the new facility, Ruby plans to hold several dressage clinics in the near future. She is also available to travel and conduct clinics. 

Balance Beam Dressage at Red Hill Farm is located at 217 Lenderman Road, Byhalia, Mississippi, off Hwy 72. Phone number is: 662-801-2936. Website:        

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