Fitness Files: Laura Batts
Laura Batts, MS, PAS is the founder of Horse Hippie and Horse Rider Yoga, companies with a focus on the ultimate health of the rider, the horse, and our planet. After years of raising her kids on a horse farm, Laura combined her holistic, equestrian lifestyle with her interest in the environment and obtained a Masters of Environmental Science with a focus on the equine sector. With Laura's Horse Rider Yoga classes, she offers all horse riders a way to improve their riding, fitness, and confidence through meditation and yoga. Continue reading to learn more about Laura and her unique approach to living a fit and healthy life.
NMF: Has fitness always been a major part of your life or was there a catalyst/point in your life when you made it more of a focus and priority?
Laura Batts (LB): Yes, fitness has always been a part of my life. Even as a young girl I remember thinking of how I loved to run. I could feel my body moving and how good I felt. When I began competitively riding I knew I needed that edge and MY fitness, not just my horse's fitness, could be the difference.
As I've aged into middle age, I have felt the changes in my body but I understand that keeping fit is a way to feel better as I grow older.
NMF: What are a few of your go-to healthy snacks/drinks that help keep you on the straight and narrow?
LB: I am a "grazer" (like my horse!) in that I eat small amounts all day long. My favorite daily snack is an organic honey crisp apple with Vermont cheddar cheese slices. I also start each day with a healthy smoothie, usually with an organic banana, peanut butter, almond milk and a bunch of plant based supplements.
NMF: How do you train your mind and stay motivated?
LB: Yoga is how I start my day, every day. It is a habit now and if for some reason I can't do it, I can really feel a difference in my body and my mind. Therefore, it isn't hard to do that part of my daily fitness. It is like coffee to some people, they can't really function without their morning cup!
It helps me to stay motivated when I think of my body as a finely tuned machine. Only top quality products fuel it and daily exercise keeps it performing at its peak. I try to remember that even if I'm not feeling like a run or a workout, I KNOW I will feel better after.
NMF: How do you change your body? What are your fitness favorites?
LB: I listen to my body (and mind) and adapt to what it is telling me. For example, as I started to age I could feel my joints telling me that running every day wasn't going to work anymore. So now I run every other day and do a nice long yoga session after, and on the other days I power walk and do a weights (muscle building) session after.
Another example is my Horse Rider Yoga. I started Horse Rider Yoga because I could sense a difference in my confidence and flexibility when I was riding. I knew my body wasn't as able which made me feel out of sink with my horse. My horse could feel it too and he began to spook. So I adapted. I knew I needed to change my body's ability and I targeted specific areas of my body that I use for riding with specific yoga moves that can improve that area. Now I do my Horse Rider Yoga as a pre-ride warm up to get me focused and aware of my body.
#BeHorsey #BeHappy #BeHippie
For more information on Laura visit the below links:
- Instagram: @horsehippie
- Twitter: @horse_hippie
- Facebook: facebook.com/HorseHippie