What is the Dressage Arena Marker Announcer or as we like to call it the DAMA?
The DAMA (patent pending) is a Automated Dressage Arena Marker Announcer that will call out each markers position as the rider goes past that marker.
The DAMA has been created with the help of Para-Olympian Sue-Ellen Lovett as a training tool for all Vision Impaired and able bodied riders.
How does it help?
Imagine riding around a Dressage Arena totally blind. That is a scary concept for a lot of us but if you have a visual impairment and a passion for horses then it is something you do because you love it.
Not being able to see and riding around an Arena can be very confusing, frustrating and dangerous unless you have someone to help.
Most of our Vision Impaired riders do this frequently with the assistance of Human Markers.
During training Human Markers stand at each marker position and when the rider goes past they call the position to the rider. The riders can then visualize where they are in the arena by listening to the Human markers calling the positions.
During Competitions the Human Markers are used to guide the riders around the arena. The Human Marker will call the maker position out loud to the rider and the rider will ride towards the Marker being called until the rider reaches that position. Then, the Human marker on the next marker position the rider needs to go to will start calling until the rider reaches that position and so on.
A lot of vision impaired riders struggle to find help during the week when they want to train. They may have 1 or 2 helpers and that is it. These helpers try their best to call out the marker positions accurately during training but it is hard to be everywhere at once.
Sue-Ellen Lovetts wish was to be able to train at anytime and know exactly where she is in the arena. The DAMA can do that for her.
With the DAMA in training mode the rider can ride around the arena and know exactly where they are at all times.
With the DAMA in Competition mode it will call the marker positions to the rider like what is done during competitions and they can ride the program selected.
The DAMA is loaded with all current Dressage Programs that can be selected on the main unit or by remote control.
It is an invaluable training tool for all riders.
To See the DAMA in Action please click on the video below: