Anne-Sophie Combet-Bubu is a freelance riding instructor at Fidelis Stables. She is 26 years old and has been a rider for over 20 years. She was born for this: “From the moment I knew how to walk, every time I saw a pony, a donkey or a camel, I had to get on it.”
She now teaches her students her passion, while working several ponies and horses. Among them: Edelweiss, a 7 year old black Welsh Cob pony that she broke in and has been working since the beginning.
Having witnessed various accidents related to foot jamming in the stirrup during falls, and being used to riding different horses every day, each with their own character and reactions, Anne-Sophie had been thinking about acquiring safety stirrups for some time.
“I had been thinking for several years that riding with safety stirrups would be a good idea. It was definitely an investment I wanted to make, but what was on the market until now didn't appeal to me. The Ophena stirrups are innovative, so that can be worrisome. What convinced me about them were the reviews.”
“What convinced me about them were the reviews.”
Her mom surprised during Christmas, and in December 2020, Anne-Sophie became the proud owner of a pair of Ophena S magnetic safety stirrups. “The packaging is great, you don't feel like you're buying riding gear. Even though the website is already well done, I thought they looked even better in real life. I really felt that it was made for me, and I could not wait to try them out.”.
A short period of adjustment to the new sensations provided by the Ophena magnetic safety stirrups is sometimes necessary. However, from the very first session, Anne-Sophie was won over by the Ophena S: “I was not at all disturbed at the first session, I was really at ease thanks to their ease of use and their comfort.”.
What does she like best about her stirrups?
- Their safety
- The ease they provide
For Anne-Sophie, safety is the main argument for these stirrups. She has had the opportunity to lose them, but at just the right time: not too early, not too late. “As long as you need them, they are there. But if you have to lose them, they come off at the right time.”
Another important point for her is the ease they bring to her riding. The fact that the stirrup is always in the right place is a big plus. “When you use traditional stirrups with a horse that is a bit wiggly, you can lose them, and in the heat of the moment not be able to put them back on properly. Here, thanks to the magnets, they are always in the right place: not too far forward, not too far back.”
One day she was out riding with her horse, who was standing up a lot, and the Ophena S did its job perfectly: “At one point I really thought I was going to fall, and the stirrup went off just at the right moment. In the end, I stayed in the saddle and was able to put them back on right away.”
Why does Anne-Sophie recommend them as an instructor?
“For their safety, their aesthetics and their modernity. My students often come to me and tell me that my stirrups are too beautiful,” she says, laughing.
“I call them the stirrups of the future.”
She says their use by students learning in equestrian centers would be a good thing. “I would really like to be able to use them for my students, to put them on the saddles in the club. It would reassure us, me and the parents.” Not that Anne-Sophie is particularly fearful at first, but since horseback riding is a dangerous sport, eliminating one of the main causes of accidents with the advanced technology of Ophena's magnetic stirrups would be a great source of relief.