A Love for Horses
Not too far off the beaten path, one Edmond women is busy supplying a service that is easy to overlook in the high-speed world in which we live.
Lisa Matlock, owner of Edmond Equestrian Center, says some counties in Oklahoma have 2.5 horses to every person. While this has not been the case in Oklahoma County for many years, a well-run boarding facility is in high demand.
“I came out here for an event once and just fell in love with the place. I drove out here one day and the place was for sale,” she said. “Then it was just a matter of getting over a few hurdles to buy the place.”
Matlock has always had a love for horses. When she was seven, she got her first horse. It was at this time that she began 4-H level competition. It didn’t take long to begin winning and eventually, she moved on to competing at the American Quarter Horse Association and the Oklahoma Hunter and Jumper Association. She found success at this level and shaped a lifelong desire to be around horses.
“These competitions were at a young age in life,” said Matlock. “I stopped for a while and had children, but I found that if the love for horses [is] in your blood, you always find your way back into it. That is what happened to me.”
Not all of her time is filled with fun while running an equestrian center. Matlock has to have a natural desire to work and provide for any number of horses she may have in her stalls.
“It’s a lot of hard work and its all [year] long. It never quits,” she said. “You have to want to care for the horses to the point of getting out in the ice and snow to break holes in the water trough so the horses can drink. The cold is probably the worst.”
Matlock offers lessons in riding at the competitive and non-competitive level. Both are available for youth and adults. One of the main reasons for Matlock getting into the equestrian industry was to provide a way for those who have a passion for horses to get closer and better acquainted with them.
“I have been fortunate in that I have been able to have some of the resources to be around horses,” she said. “Now, I can provide a way for those who are less fortunate to be around horses.”
Over the last few years, Matlock has trained several horses for competition in show. One of her horses, Logan, has placed in the top six in the world in two different events. She says that while training a horse, you must look at it like an athlete.
“You need a horse that is balanced in their hips and shoulders,” she said. “Proper muscle tone, balance and bloodline are also extremely important.”
Matlock also stresses the importance of keeping the horse’s diet regular. “For the horse, you have to. It maintains regularity, that is, keeping the horse on a consistent diet with balanced nutrients.”
This time of year, you see horses in pastures with large coats. The reason for this, aside from keeping the horse warm, is to keep the horse’s coat of hair down. This is done on show horses so that the muscle tone will be more easily recognizable. Also, as the horse works, it sweats. The shorter the hair, the quicker the sweat dries, resulting in a horse better suited for show.
Matlock’s facilities consist of 41 acres, a 25,000 square foot barn and an outdoor arena used for teaching performance riding and jumping. For more information about Edmond Equestrian Center, visit www.edmondequestrian.com