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Dressage Star Mikala Gundersen Wins BEST Rider Award At Gold Coast Fall Fling

Wellington, FL (November 16, 2011) – International dressage trainer and competitor Mikala Gundersen showed off her world-class talent at the Gold Coast Fall Fling, earning great scores aboard Liberando VT as well as riding away as the winner of the BEST Rider Award. Presented by personal trainer Nick Tortora, a Wellington based trainer who focuses on equestrian strength training, the BEST Award stands for Balanced Equestrian Strength Training.

“I had a chance to talk to Mikala after she won the BEST Rider Award and she was very happy about it and said she is really looking forward to have a training session,” Tortora said, adding that the winner of each BEST Rider Award receives a half-hour consultation and a one-hour training session at Tortora’s The Training Experience in Wellington. “During Mikala’s session we will focus on movement and how Mikala’s body moves and then work on strengthening any movements she has that may be weak.”

Gundersen, who competed Liberando VT in the Six-Year-Old test earning a score of 75.6% at the Gold Coast Fall Fling, grew up in Denmark where she spent several years ranked as one of the top ten riders in Denmark. Gundersen, her husband Grand Prix jumper rider Henrik Gundersen, and their two children moved to the United States in 2004 and Gundersen continues to teach, train and show in Wellington.

Wellington is a hot spot for world-class riders and many riders have turned to Tortora and his Balanced Equestrian Strength Training program. Tortora’s clients include riders such as McLain Ward and Caroline Roffman who are using the program to become stronger. “The stronger you are physically, the more of an edge you have over the competition and that also helps you move to the next level,” Tortora said.

Tortora is sponsoring the BEST Rider Award during the 2011/2012 Dressage season and said he looks forward to working with each of the winners. Tortora also helps riders develop their mind-body connection. “As a competitor, the mind-body connection is extremely important. I help riders get in control of their thoughts and that translates into becoming a stronger competitor,” he said. “Our mind is a tool for us and we should be controlling it, not letting it control us. Having a strong mind also translates into having self confidence; if we don’t believe in ourselves it’s hard to get others to believe in us.”

For more information on BEST, or to schedule a Balanced Equestrian Strength Training session with Tortora, call 561-251-2724 or email him at trainwpb@gmail.com. The Training Experience is located at 12153 Sugar Pine Trail in Wellington.


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