10 Questions with Mariel Aguirre

November 3, 2019
Have you ever wondered what your favourite riders do to wind down? Our interview series will be catching up with individuals in the sport and asking them 10 questions about their life and what they get up to in their free time!

This week we interviewed the very talented Mariel Aguirre and talked about all things relating to routine, health and fitness, and the words she lives by!

Where are you from and how did you get into the sport?
I'm from Mexico and I got into the sport when my family moved to Switzerland when I was 8. There was a pony club next to my house so I would go there after school to ride!

Tell us about the horse or pony that taught you the most
The first horse I bought when I started riding again after university was Filou and he took me from jumping 1.20 to 1.50. He has the biggest heart, he was super brave, and he always took me to the other side so he taught me everything!

What do you consider to be your greatest strength?
I'm a realist and I think that helps me get through the ups and the downs of the sport

What about your greatest weakness?
My self-confidence, definitely. I tend to be my own worst enemy and I think that's definitely my biggest weakness

Photography courtesy of @aralpictures

How do you handle the pressure associated with the sport?
Definitely by being realistic about what the pressure means in that moment. I remind myself of where I'm at and what I'm doing. For example if I'm going into a Grand Prix, I tell myself - this is what this grand prix means and this is what I need to do. I make sure I'm aware of exactly the situation I'm in, when I'm in it. I have two mental trainers that I work with and they've been able to help me deal with everything.

How much of a role do you believe attitude plays when it comes to success?

I think attitude and mental strength is everything. I think that in our sport feeling and talent only gets you so far. At some point we all get to an equal playing field and what puts people above the rest is their attitude and mentality

What do you do to look after yourself?
I do pilates twice a week and I have a personal trainer who I work with twice a week so 4 days out of the week I'm in the gym. I think we need to look after ourselves the way we look after our horses so I try to eat healthy, I sleep 8-9 hours a day, and I make sure to work out.

Tell us a bit about the larger team you work with
I train with Marlon Zanotelli and Angelica Augustsson-Zanotelli. Then there's my show groom Isa Debonnez, and my home groom Marie Steijlen. Finally I have my personal trainer, Lars Jame, my pilates teacher, Martien Janssen, and my two mental coaches, Annette Paterakis and Esther Mueller, who I work with on a very regular basis

Photography courtesy of @aralpictures

What has the sport taught you about life? Are there any key lessons you'd like to share with us?
My friends would know me as an extremely organised person so I try to plan out exactly how my life is going to go and the sport has definitely taught me I can't predict everything and I can only control what is in my power. It's taught me how to let life take the reins and not try to control everything and be patient when it comes to reaching my goals

Favourite quote:
I have three that I live by,
Everything happens for a reason
Pick and choose your battles
Don’t compare your chapter 1 to someone else’s chapter 20

Thank you, Mariel, for taking the time to speak with us!

Interested in featuring in a future post? Get in touch at inquiries@jackdoddfoundation.org

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