Born in Finland, I grew up like any horse-loving girl spending most of my free time at the stables. Already then I had a tremendous interest in becoming a professional equestrian. As soon as I knew how to ride on a novice level I started to assist other riders with helpful advice. Before long I was asked to teach beginners in the local riding school that also sent me to the Finnish Instructor School in Ypaja for an assistant instructor course lead by Kyra Kyrklund.
I competed in both dressage and jumping regionally and nationally in Finland.
When I was nineteen I decided to move to Germany to study riding with Georg Heyser as a working student. This time in Germany convinced me that my future career was going to be with horses.
After few years I relocated Stateside to California. I studied biology in the University for a while. Before long I was back into horses. I ran successful training stables in Southern California, Washington and Maryland. During these years I prepared myself, with the help of several well-known masters, for the USDF Instructor Exams. I am certified up to fourth level with the United States Dressage Federation. Also I competed successfully on several horses in dressage. My students improved and competed as well.
2009 I was selected to be a dressage young horse and FEI horse developer by the American Hanoverian Society. I have ridden several Hanoverian mares in the performance test into elite status.
Kirsi Nevalainen-LaCorte Dressage
Keen on having a happy and comfortable horse to work with, I look for the best solution for each horse. Therefore I insist on having a well communicating team around me when bringing horses up the levels. A good saddle fitter, horseshoer, veterinarian, dentist and the feed-supplier are very essential part of the team. Good footing in the riding arena is also on the list of essentials as well as the staff in the barn where the horses live in.
It is my pleasure to work with riders who understand that there are no shortcuts or gimmicks to learning. There is no substitute to an experience. Although a good way to complement knowledge, one can not learn riding by just reading books about it. A willingness to try to understand the process from the horse's point of view is golden. There are no 'three-day' wonders. Horses need time. They are to be considered individuals just like humans. They may learn different things, different ways at different rate.
My great love is to work with young horses as they are full of life-force and joy. They enjoy every new thing brought to them with a pure curiosity. It is adventurous to see their mind working and experience their thoughts and actions.